Study shows clean drinking water more important to Americans than clean air

Most Americans believe significant investments in water infrastructure are needed to avoid future water crises.

Jun 28th, 2017
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STAMFORD, CT, JUNE 28, 2017 -- Access to clean drinking water and the nation's water infrastructure are major concerns for Americans across the country, according to "Perspectives on America's Water," a new study. A total of 6,699 American adults shared their views on water-related topics in this comprehensive online study conducted on behalf of Nestlé Waters North America by the global market research firm PSB in May 2017. The study, the first of its kind to gather both the opinions of the U.S. general population and those of experts in the field, found that water is viewed as the most important natural resource in Americans' daily lives, more so even than clean air (87 percent compared to 81 percent).

The study found that two in three Americans (66 percent) believe their own community's clean drinking water is at risk, while 59 percent say a major overhaul of U.S. water infrastructure is needed to avoid that possibility. Among survey respondents, there is almost universal agreement (96 percent) that if the United States does not proactively invest in the country's water infrastructure system now, it will end up costing more in the long run.

"The takeaways from this study are clear to us: Americans care deeply about the state of their drinking water, and they believe investments in infrastructure and innovation are needed now," said Nelson Switzer, Chief Sustainability Officer at Nestlé Waters North America.

In order to complete the survey, PSB, on behalf of Nestlé Waters North America, conducted an online questionnaire among 6,699 American adults in May 2017. The audiences included general population americans (mapped to the U.S. Census on key demographics); an oversample of general population respondents in Arizona, California, Colorado, Florida, Maine, Massachusetts, Michigan, Missouri, New York, Oregon, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Virginia, Washington, and West Virginia; Opinion Elites, Health/Environmentally-Conscious Consumers; Government Officials, Academics, NGO Employees, Utility Company Business Decision Makers, and Engineers.

Read the full study and learn more here.

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