Incorporating Home Water Reports to Minimize Home Water Use During Droughts

URL: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0095069621000851

This open access study used a large-scale framed field experiment to evaluate the short- and long-run effects of Home Water Reports on water usage during drought conditions.

  • The study randomly assigned participants into a a control group and one of three treatment groups. Even when layered on top of a 25% drought conservation mandate that at times banned outdoor water use, the Home Water Reports quickly reduced water use by a further 4-5% compared with the control group. Treatment households reduced both indoor and outdoor water use. This effect size of using the reports is similar to that of using reports during non-drought periods.
  • The study found no significant difference in water use between the three treatment groups. Neither the content of the water recommendations nor a personalized message advertising a durable goods incentive altered the response to the reports. The authors conclude that this suggests that "households respond either to the social comparisons portion of the treatment or the receipt of the report."
  • The additional water conservation habits persisted for four months post-treatment, then could no longer be statistically detected. One reason may be that soon after treatment ended, the drought was declared over and conservation policies were removed or relaxed.
Topics: Environment:, Water efficiency, Climate change adaptation
Location: US-California
Resource Type: strategies and interventions
Publisher: Elsevier
Date Last Updated: 2023-03-14 14:10:16

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