Exploring the associations between the perception of water scarcity and support for alternative potable water sources

Semasinghe, Christina, Jatrana, Santosh, and King, Tanya J. (2023) Exploring the associations between the perception of water scarcity and support for alternative potable water sources. PLoS ONE, 18 (3). e0283245.

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Abstract

This study examines the association between the perception of water scarcity and support for alternative water sources in general, and specifically desalination and recycled water. It also examines the mediating role that perception of climate change has on the aforementioned association. A 46-item survey (n = 588) was conducted in the Geelong region of Australia. Logistic regression was used to determine the independent association between perceived water scarcity and socio-demographic factors, with support for alternative water sources, desalination and recycled water. 82% of respondents supported undefined 'alternative water sources'. However, support for specific alternatives was lower (desalination: 65%; recycled water: 40.3%). Perception of water scarcity was significantly associated with increased odds of support for alternative water sources (OR 1.94, 95% CI: 1.25-3.00) and support for recycled water (OR 2.32, 95% CI: 1.68-3.31). There was no significant relationship between perception of water scarcity and support for desalination (OR 0.959 95% CI: 0.677-1.358). Climate change was found to mediate perceived water scarcity and support for alternative sources (OR 1.360, 95% CI: 0.841-2.198). The mediation of the relationship between perceived water scarcity and support for recycled water by climate change was not strong. These results facilitate enhanced community engagement strategies.

Item ID: 78367
Item Type: Article (Research - C1)
ISSN: 1932-6203
Copyright Information: © 2023 Semasinghe et al. This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.
Date Deposited: 11 Oct 2023 01:48
FoR Codes: 37 EARTH SCIENCES > 3707 Hydrology > 370705 Urban hydrology @ 50%
41 ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCES > 4104 Environmental management > 410406 Natural resource management @ 50%
SEO Codes: 28 EXPANDING KNOWLEDGE > 2801 Expanding knowledge > 280111 Expanding knowledge in the environmental sciences @ 100%
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