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Title: Household water consumption in the Maltese islands : an analytical study
Authors: Grech, Annalise
Keywords: Residential water consumption -- Malta
Economics -- Sociological aspects
Issue Date: 2014
Abstract: Water is a major concern for the Maltese Islands, but there seems to be very little effort towards its sustainable use, particularly in households. This study aims to identify the amounts and main uses of water in Maltese households and the patterns of use. The relationships between consumption patterns and socio-economic and demographic characteristics of households were also identified. The perceived water consumption of households, collected through questionnaires, was also compared to the actual water consumption, gathered from the time-use water diaries. Four hundred and thirty-two individuals filled in a structured questionnaire, while 30 households filled in time-use water diaries for a one week period. The data collected from these methods was then analysed in SPSS using frequency tables and Chi-Square tests. Results indicate that the average consumption for the sampled Maltese households in summer is 239.7 litres per capita per day. The highest end use is showering, followed by dish washing, laundry, tap use, and toilet flushing respectively. Garden watering and car washing make up a small component of water end use. This study also established that household water consumption varies according to the time of day and the day of the week. This difference in consumption patterns is mostly noticeable when comparing weekdays to weekends. Moreover, results gathered for this study show that there is a relationship between a number of socioeconomic and demographic factors and water consumption amounts. These factors were found to be household income, type of house and rainwater tank ownership, family size, district, and level of education. Another important finding is that there is a mismatch between the individuals’ perceived and the actual household water consumption, in that persons perceive to consume more/less than the actual amounts. The quantitative methods used in this study proved advantageous since they provided in-depth and authentic data on household water consumption at end use level. Furthermore, by taking a number of measures and by developing effective policies, household water consumption can be significantly reduced.
Appears in Collections:Dissertations - InsCCSD - 2014

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