EEA surveys options for lower water demand

Cutting household water use "will require metering, price hikes, water-saving devices"

The key to reducing European household water demand lies in raising prices, more metering and comprehensive installation of water-saving technologies, according to a study published today by the European Environment Agency (EEA). Many households could substantially cut their consumption if they were simply given more information, the agency suggests.

The study also looks at what types of measures lead to reduced water consumption by industry and agriculture, although in less detail. It is the second in a series on sustainable water use in Europe.

According to the EEA, immediate savings in household demand of about 10-25% can be gained from the introduction of household water metering, while use of water-saving devices in bathrooms can cut demand by about 50%. Investment in leakage reduction of the water distribution system is also crucial, although expensive, says the study.

The report also suggests that many industrial firms could halve consumption through improved processes, and by 90% if closed circuits were introduced. Farmers could also reduce water use, for example by modernising irrigation systems, it says.

Follow Up:
EEA, tel: +45 33 36 71 00, and the report.

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