The first round of our EVERY DROP MADISON poll has closed, thank you to everyone who participated! Results are below, and we will be posting additional poll questions soon.
Your input will help guide Madison Water Utility as it plans for the next phase of water conservation and sustainability in Madison. The EVERY DROP MADISON initiative seeks community input on new conservation incentives and programs that will bring a new era of water stewardship and source water protection to our city.
Recognizing that conservation is water supply, Madison Water Utility and its customers are committed to using water efficiently. After surpassing a 2008 goal (one year early!) to reduce residential per-capita water use by twenty percent by 2020, MWU is updating its Water Conservation and Sustainability Plan to further improve efficiency.
To inform this process, Madison Water Utility wants to engage with our customers to better understand which incentives would be most effective in increasing water use efficiency still further. MWU is working with the WaterNow Alliance, in partnership with the online polling platform POLCO, to maximize public engagement. Madison Water Utility is a 2019 recipient of a WaterNow Project Accelerator grant.
Round 1 Poll Results
Our initial 5-question poll was launched on August 27, 2019 and remained open for six weeks. Key takeaways are summarized below, or read the full conservation poll report from WaterNow Alliance.
Respondents mostly knew where their water comes from.
Respondents are more motivated to conserve for "moral" reasons than to save money. However, several respondents also stated that the current rate structure doesn't do enough to reward water conservation.
Regarding water sustainability, top priorities were investing in water quality and the replacement of aging infrastructure.
Inside the home, most respondents only wash full loads of clothing and dishes. Approximately half had installed a low-flow showerhead. Fewer than one-third had taken advantage of our toilet rebate program or used our online conservation tool.
Outdoors, about half of respondents only water during the coolest times of the day and use mulch in their garden beds. In the comments, several respondents added that they don't water their lawns at all, or that they have invested in native plantings that are well-adapted to our climate and don't require additional water once they're established.