what is the reason of decreasing in water consumption?

The city of Santo Domingo Diversifies Its Water Consumption

A recent study concluded that people living near large water supplies had a significantly smaller consumption of bottled water than residents of areas without such water sources. The study was done in the context of several other studies into the effects of water conservation. The conclusion is obvious: conservation of water is a serious issue for many people, even when it comes to households with water-conserving appliances. How can this be?

Firstly, some experts suggest that the real reason

for the decrease in water consumption per household is the Bonus program implemented by the Belgian government. The Bonus program offered financial incentives to households who contribute to the control of water demand. The study showed that (i) participation in the Bonus program was more effective and efficient than the control water demand program, (ii) the decreased water consumption per household was also more significant in rural areas supplied by publicly-owned water reservoirs, and (iii) water consumption decreased more in areas where water is publicly owned than in areas supplied by dams. These facts confirm the argument presented at the end of the last chapter of this report. The study also confirms the fact that most people living in urban areas cannot afford the luxury of public water supplies.

What does this all mean for households concerned about water consumption?

In short, it means that the Bonus program has significantly reduced the quantities of bottled water sold in Belgium, while at the same time increasing the quantities of water consumed directly from a publicly owned water reservoir. The study indicates that the quantity of bottled water sold by households is now rising faster than the amounts provided by reservoirs. It also indicates that the volume of households paying for bottled water is increasing faster than those buying it from the public supply. If this trend continues, there will be a decrease in the amount of affordable water available to all citizens living in Belgium.

What should the Belgian government do about this increasing trend?

The first step they must take is to fully investigate the causes of the phenomenon and come up with a coordinated strategy to control the increase in the volumes of bottled water sold. This would involve an evaluation of the water consumption behavior of households in terms of their purchasing behavior. One of the factors cited above could be the reduction of the ” Bonus” water policy introduced in 2021. The second most important factor cited in the study is that some of the households participating in the Bonus program have been known to increase their water consumption more than the average house to avoid joining the ” Bonus” program.

A better approach than creating more costly “bountiful” water reserves

is to create more affordable policies for household participants that join the ” Bonus” program to avoid bottled water prices. This could be done through a price change on household bottled water consumption measured monthly. This measure would increase household purchasing power without adversely affecting the broader economic incentives promoted by the government. A third option could be the creation of a reservoir management plan using existing reservoir capacities and existing economic incentives and which offers a reasonable rate of compensation to households that use up to a certain level of their allotted reservoir capacity.

Although bottled water has become more popular recently

the question of the future of the city of Santo Domingo is not yet answered. Although most of the taps are already stocked with tap water, a serious lack of adequate storage reservoirs is a key obstacle to the sustainable development of the city of Santo Domingo. The Belgian government should initiate a study aiming to assess the current problem and to recommend concrete measures to overcome this issue, thus contributing to the sustainable development of Santo Domingo and giving confidence to the growing number of users of this clean and healthy liquid.

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