Residential Irrigation Restrictions and Water Conservation: A Review of Studies from 1978 to 2022
Author: Stephen Morkel and Mehdi Nemati,
Urban water managers and policymakers have adopted demand management strategies to reduce water use and buffer against short-term water supply shortfalls. This article provides a systematic review of publications from 1978-2022 that examine the effectiveness of residential water use restrictions as the primary demand-side management tool. Our results indicate the significant overall effect of restrictions on reducing water consumption, with an average reduction of 12.3% from the 23 studies reviewed in this article. When evaluating effect strength by restriction type (mandatory versus voluntary), voluntary restrictions have a significantly lower effect than mandatory restrictions on water use. We also find an inverse correlation between the number of irrigation days allowed and the estimated effect strength.
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