World Water Day –
March 22, 2021

We are all ready to reduce the consumption of single-use plastics.

Easier said than done, there is a sea of plastic!

On the occasion of World Water Day 2021 – March 22 – the research conducted by Toluna for Culligan International in 11 countries analyses consumption styles in terms of water and sustainability in the year of the pandemic.

In recent years, awareness campaigns on good environmental practices, reinforced by the so-called “Greta effect”, have contributed to increasing the level of information and awareness of citizens on the need to protect our planet and safeguard its resources. A new awareness that has generated in all of us excellent resolutions in terms of sustainability, but still poorly applied in practice.

This is confirmed by the research conducted in February 2021 by Toluna for the Culligan Group, world leader in water treatment systems, on an international panel1. The study aims to investigate behaviours related to drinking water – at home and outside the home – in an unprecedented year marked by the Covid-19 pandemic.

“The survey clearly shows that consumers care about their water and undoubtably are interested in promoting sustainability,” said Culligan International President & CEO Scott Clawson. “Yet the study also shows that more work must be done to help consumers gain a deeper understanding about how to ensure their water is clean and safe, and how they can do more to protect the environment.”

The survey examined respondents’ attitudes and perspectives on water as related to health, environmental impact, and other areas. While many said they were taking steps to reduce their carbon footprint, their actions suggest they still do not realize the impact of some of their practices

Among the European countries, well ahead in the passage to the Mayor’s water, the Netherlands, and the UK, where respectively 83%, 70% say they prefer the consumption of tap water at home. The Americans, on the other hand, are less virtuous with 53%.

Other key global findings from the survey spoke to a variety of habits and perceptions related to water:

  • In all regions surveyed, people admit their current daily water consumption is 12% to 20% lower than the ideal.
  • 72% of people around the world believe bottled water is safer than tap water, despite bottles often being made with potentially harmful phthalates and its contents having twice the amount of microplastics present as compared tap water.
  • 1 in 4 of respondents from North America do not know whether dehydration has a negative impact on their motor skills; globally, fewer than half of respondents know that drinking water actually decreases water retention, which can cause bloating and added water weight.

“Our goal is to help drive a better understanding of the key role water plays in our lives and ensure access to clean, safe water at home, at work and on the go for all,” said Culligan CEO Clawson. “As an industry we all need to play a part, by conducting more ground-breaking studies, understanding consumer behaviour, and ultimately encouraging environmental change through leadership, education and our range of world-class products.”

For anyone who feels the need to further improve the organoleptic qualities, there are also systems on the market for the treatment of water at the point of use able to eliminate the smell of chlorine, to regulate the presence of salts based on tastes and needs, as well as to refrigerate and carbonate the water instantly. A valid alternative to the consumption of water in plastic bottles that can represent a practical solution for Italians ready to take that extra step in favour of concretely green consumption.


1 Analysis of consumer habits in terms of water and sustainability, conducted by Toluna in 11 countries in 2021 for Culligan International on the occasion of World Water Day.