Study Reveals Wasteful Consumer Behaviour as the Biggest Barrier to Meeting Demands
Water utility chiefs believe the risk of global water demand outstripping supply is “highly likely” according to a research report released by Oracle Utilities in December 2012.
The report, “Water for All?,” found that wasteful consumer behaviour is seen as the biggest barrier to meeting future demands along with worries over climate change, outlining the need for a significant shift change in the management of water supplies.
The need to address these challenges is prompting innovation in the water sector. Water utilities in both developed and developing nations are deploying technology enabling greater efficiency, such as monitoring and advance telemetry systems, which help moderate demand and resolve issues efficiently.
Conducted by the Economist Intelligence Unit, the report surveyed 244 senior water utility executives across 10 countries – Australia, Brazil, Canada, China, France, India, Russia, Spain, the United Kingdom and the United States.
One of the key findings of the research relates to innovative industry: Prompted by necessity, the water sector is becoming an increasingly prominent innovator, due to the implementation technologies such as smart meters and desalination solutions.
For instance, one fifth of water utilities in developed markets regularly evaluate new technologies, compared to a third of developing countries. However, more water utilities must improve their ability to identify and implement such advances, with over a third unaware of the innovative options available to them.