Gold Ridge Resource Conservation District

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The Price of Water: A Comparison of Water Rates, Usage in 30 U.S. Cities

Across the country there is wide variation in use and price for water consumption in major urban areas, with residential rates being lowest in the Great Lakes region, according to a Circle of Blue survey

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A first of its kind survey of residential water use and prices in 30 metropolitan regions in the United States has found that some cities in rain-scarce regions have the lowest residential water rates and the highest level of water use. A family of four using 100 gallons per person each day will pay on average $34.29 a month in Phoenix compared to $65.47 for the same amount in Boston.

The survey, conducted by Circle of Blue over the last several months, also found that average daily residential water use ranged from a low of 41 gallons per person in Boston to a high of 211 gallons per person in Fresno, Calif.

The Circle of Blue survey includes data on water rates and water usage from the 20 largest U.S. cities, according to the 2000 Census, and ten regionally representative cities to gain a broad view of urban water pricing. The survey comes as municipal water departments and their customers across the country contend with the ironic and unintended consequence of the economic recession and water conservation. In most major cities water use is declining while rates charged to residential customers are rising.

Continue reading here.

Check out the data for 2012 here.

Source:  Brett Walton, April 26, 2010, Circle of Blue

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