Value of Water Campaign Releases Annual Poll
New Poll Shows Half of Voters Are Not Familiar with the Federal Infrastructure Bill, but 3 of 4 Supported Water Infrastructure Measures Once Informed
Seventh annual Value of Water Index also measured voters’ rising concerns with water, favorability towards elected officials who supported the infrastructure bill, and more
April 26, 2022—Washington, DC— Today, the Value of Water Campaign released the results of its seventh annual national poll—The Value of Water Index. The poll annually tracks voters’ opinions and concerns around water infrastructure, climate, the environment, and other water issues. This year, the poll also asked questions about the recently passed Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, or IIJA. Read the full results of the Value of Water Index here.
When asked how familiar they were with the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law that passed last year, only 11 percent said very familiar and 37 percent said somewhat familiar, for a total of 48 percent having some confidence that they knew the bill. Forty-nine percent said they were not familiar with the bill.
Once given a factual paragraph about the contents of the bill, focusing on its $55 billion for water infrastructure, 75 percent of respondents approved of the bill, with 48 percent strongly approving. Support cut across all ages, races, genders, and political ideologies, with 95 percent of Democrats, 71 percent of Independents, and 56 percent of Republicans supporting the investments in water. Notably, 65 percent of voters said they would view an elected official who supported water infrastructure investments more favorably.
“While the country is divided on so many issues, support of infrastructure and specifically water infrastructure remains a unifying issue,” says Mami Hara, US Water Alliance CEO. “We are thrilled with the investment in last year's Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, but clearly voters need to hear more about the contents of the bill and what it will do for their communities. This is a wonderful opportunity for elected officials and water providers to come together and tell the story of how transformative water investment can be for a community.”
The poll found that voters’ trust in their local water infrastructure has diminished, dropping from 86 percent of voters saying the water infrastructure in their local community is very good or somewhat good in 2016 to 74 percent in 2022. There was a drop in confidence in the nation’s water infrastructure, with 59 percent of voters ranking it as very good or somewhat good in 2016 and only 41 percent saying that today. Simultaneously, the number of voters saying the nation’s water infrastructure was in bad shape increased over the same period, from 34 percent in 2016 to 41 percent in 2022.
The poll was conducted by the bipartisan polling team of FM3 research and New Bridge Strategy from March 27 until April 7, 2022. The poll results include telephone and online interviews with 1,034 nationwide voters and has a 3.1 percent margin of error. To read a fact sheet on the Value of Water Index, click here.
The Value of Water Campaign educates and inspires the nation about how water is essential, invaluable, and in need of investment. Spearheaded by top leaders in the water industry, the Value of Water Campaign is building public and political will for investment in America's water infrastructure. Learn more by visiting the Value of Water Campaign website.
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