Abstract

Managing water demand by reducing water consumption and improving water use efficiency has become essential for ensuring water security. This research aimed to identify the primary determinants of household water consumption in an Australian Indigenous community to develop evidence-based water demand management policies and strategies that might be implemented by the water service provider. A behavior change framework was applied to investigate the opportunity, ability, and motivational determinants affecting household water consumption and conservation in an Australian Indigenous community. The lack of water conservation knowledge and skills of high water users could be barriers to saving water. Low water users have positive attitudes towards water conservation and a higher level of awareness about their own water use. While there is a lack of a belief that water shortages will occur, low water users do have concerns of vulnerability to droughts, and that could be a driver for their sense of obligation to engage in water conservation practices. The research recommended communication messages and tools to address identified barriers to enabling positive changes to water use behaviors, which have wider applications in remote Australian Indigenous communities.

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