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Article

Public Perception of Water Consumption and Its Effects on Water Conservation Behavior

1
State Key Laboratory of Soil Erosion and Dryland Farming on the Loess Plateau, Institute of Soil and Water Conservation, Northwest A&F University, Yangling 712100, Shaanxi Province, China
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School of Surveying and Land Information Engineering, Henan Polytechnic University, Jiaozuo 454003, Henan Province, China
3
Wageningen University and Research Centre, Alterra, Soil Science Centre, P.O. Box 47, 6700 AA Wageningen, The Netherlands
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Water 2014, 6(6), 1771-1784; https://doi.org/10.3390/w6061771
Received: 15 April 2014 / Revised: 7 June 2014 / Accepted: 10 June 2014 / Published: 16 June 2014
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Water Consumption and Water End-uses in Buildings)
The usual perception of consumers regarding water consumption is that their bills do not match their actual water consumption. However, this mismatch has been insufficiently studied; particularly for cases related to specific water-use patterns, water conservation practices, and user socio-demographics. In this study, a total of 776 households in 16 villages situated in the rural Wei River Basin are investigated to address the gap in the literature. Questionnaires and 3-day water diaries are used for data collection and comparison. Results show that significant relations exist between perceived water consumption and actual water consumption. Participants have different perceptions of specific water-use patterns. Participants tend to underestimate their outdoor and kitchen water consumption and overestimate their indoor water consumption. Females and elder consumers accurately estimate their water consumption, whereas consumers with high education levels and incomes underestimate their actual water consumption. The groups who can accurately estimate water consumption have better water conservation consciousness and water conservation practices than those who underestimate their water consumption. The huge disparities highlighted by the results suggest that community policies and programs to improve public water conservation consciousness or practices must be implemented to enhance consumer understanding of water consumption. View Full-Text
Keywords: domestic water consumption; water-use behavior; survey research; Wei River Basin domestic water consumption; water-use behavior; survey research; Wei River Basin
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MDPI and ACS Style

Fan, L.; Wang, F.; Liu, G.; Yang, X.; Qin, W. Public Perception of Water Consumption and Its Effects on Water Conservation Behavior. Water 2014, 6, 1771-1784. https://doi.org/10.3390/w6061771

AMA Style

Fan L, Wang F, Liu G, Yang X, Qin W. Public Perception of Water Consumption and Its Effects on Water Conservation Behavior. Water. 2014; 6(6):1771-1784. https://doi.org/10.3390/w6061771

Chicago/Turabian Style

Fan, Liangxin, Fei Wang, Guobin Liu, Xiaomei Yang, and Wei Qin. 2014. "Public Perception of Water Consumption and Its Effects on Water Conservation Behavior" Water 6, no. 6: 1771-1784. https://doi.org/10.3390/w6061771

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