Westerners, Seniors Most Likely to Conserve Water

The Water Effect
Maganga Donald is 8 years old and lives within World Vision's Manonga ADP in northern Tanzania. Maganga became sick and thought he would die after drinking dirty water from his family's only source of water. He recovered from his sickness after taking ant

Seattle, WA (March 16, 2015) — People in the western United States and U.S. adults 55 years old and older are among those most likely to practice water conservation in their home, according to a new poll coinciding with World Water Day.

An online survey of more than 2,000 U.S. adults, conducted online by Harris Poll on behalf of World Vision in February, found that 88 percent of people in the western U.S., and 85 percent of seniors (55+) nationwide, regularly attempted to reduce their household’s water consumption.

Americans also were polled on whether they believe it’s possible for most people worldwide to have access to clean water in their lifetime — and they were not optimistic.

More than 748 million people, or one in nine worldwide, lack access to clean drinking water. Only 9 percent of U.S. adults believed it was very likely for most people on earth to receive access to clean water in their lifetime. Overall, the majority (53 percent) thought it was unlikely.

“While Americans might be pessimistic about solving the global water crisis, they have reason to be optimistic,” said Greg Allgood, vice president of water at World Vision. “Globally we’re making dramatic progress toward a world where every person has clean water — a goal that we must achieve — and one I believe we’ll achieve within our lifetimes.”

Allgood cited a recent study by KPMG that found that the world’s leading water providers reached 6.8 million new people with clean water in 2013.

World Vision is the largest nongovernmental provider of clean water in the developing world, reaching one new person with clean water every 30 seconds.

Other findings from the poll included that:

  • Nearly 1 in 5 Americans do not regularly attempt to conserve water in their home.
  • Shutting a faucet off while brushing teeth or washing dishes is the most common method of water conservation.
  • Education and marital status had little impact on the approach to water conservation.
  • Women are more likely than men to believe that the global water crisis can be solved.
  • The wealthiest (those with an annual household income of $100,000 or more) and the most educated (college graduates+) were the most pessimistic about solving the global water crisis.

World Water Day, established by the United Nations General Assembly in 1993, is on March 22.

– END –

About this poll:
This survey was conducted online within the United States by Harris Poll on behalf of World Vision from February 18-20, 2015, among 2,053 adults ages 18 and older. This online survey is not based on a probability sample and therefore no estimate of theoretical sampling error can be calculated. For complete survey methodology, including weighting variables, please contact Christine Connolly Bell at World Vision.

About World Vision:
World Vision is a Christian humanitarian organization conducting relief, development, and advocacy activities in its work with children, families, and their communities in nearly 100 countries to help them reach their full potential by tackling the causes of poverty and injustice. World Vision serves all people regardless of religion, race, ethnicity, or gender. For more information, please visit www.WorldVision.org/media-center/ or on Twitter @WorldVisionUSA.


  • World Water Day poll also found that most Americans are pessimistic about solving global water crisis.