Consumer Survey on Water Reuse -Is the “Ick Factor” Fading?

A new consumer survey conducted by GE (Schenectady, NY) indicates that two-thirds of Americans feel positive about water reuse. The survey of 3000 consumers in the U.S., China, and Singapore found that Americans certainly support “toilet to turf.” The survey also reports that Americans also think that industry and government should play a stronger role in making water reuse a priority. The survey found that 44% of people would pay up to 12% more right now to ensure that future generations would be less vulnerable to water shortages. The report notes this as a significant finding, considering that 36 U.S. states face water shortages in the coming year, and by 2025, two-thirds of the world’s population—or 5.3 billion people—will be vulnerable to water shortages.

Following the release of the survey, GE convened a panel of water leaders to discuss the issues surrounding water reuse. Panelists included Jeff Eger, WEF executive director of (Alexandria, Va.); Ben Grumbles, president of the U.S. Water Alliance (Washington, D.C.) and former EPA assistant administrator for Water; Stan Dean, district engineer for the Sacramento (Calif.) Regional County Sanitation District; and Jon Freedman, Global Government Relations Leader for GE Water & Process Technologies. Betsy Otto, director of the Markets and Enterprise Program for the World Resources Institute (Washington, D.C.) moderated the panel. For a more in-depth look at the results of the survey, visit the GE Power & Water’s water and process technologies website

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