One Million Rural Cisterns

Producing and certifying organic essential oils, herbs & spices
2009 SEED Award Winner Green Technologies Brazil

Since 2002, the P1MC’s aim has been to build one million cisterns to collect rain water to provide a sustainable means of overcoming water shortages in semi-arid rural areas. The Brazilian semi-arid region is one of the most populous regions of the world, in which 36 million people have little access to potable water. P1MC´s innovation lies in the combination of collecting rain water and making it available to communities in rural areas through strong family, communal and civil society engagement. Jointly with the rural communities, P1MC has established a training process aiming to involve one million families in the construction of cisterns to collect rain water. 

Eco-Inclusive Impacts

P1MC increases the rainwater storage capacity in rural areas and contributes to stimulating the economy through employment generation and income increase of the community members.
  • Generating employment and income in the communities.
  • Assisting to lighten women’s domestic work and more children attend school.
  • Decreasing the number of people suffering from diseases due to contaminated water.
  • Reducing the loss of water due to evaporation.
  • Increasing the rainwater storage capacity in rural areas which is reducing the groundwater extraction and keeping the water table high.
  • Contributing to stimulate the economy.
  • Generating new employment opportunities and increasing the income of masons, young people, trainers of the families, and craftsmen.



This enterprise is supported through its partnerships with various stakeholders, ranging from national and international organisations, investors, research institutes, suppliers, governmental bodies, NGOs, other social and environmental enterprises and more.

Association One Million Cistern Program to the Semiarid Region (AP1MC) is the central managing unit.

Micro-regional Managing Units (UGM), an NGO, mobilises, registers, selects and trains the rural families in building cisterns and working with the communities to ensure water supply.

The Ministry of Social Development, Food Security and Nutrition (MDS) finances P1MC´s activities with public resources from the Zero Hunger Program.

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