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Drivers affecting household residents’ water and related energy consumption in residential buildings

Adnan Enshassi (Department of Civil Engineering, Islamic University of Gaza, Gaza, Palestine)
Salam Elzebdeh (Department of Civil Engineering, Islamic University of Gaza, Gaza, Palestine)
Sherif Mohamed (Griffith School of Engineering, Griffith University, Nathan, Australia)

International Journal of Building Pathology and Adaptation

ISSN: 2398-4708

Article publication date: 8 May 2017

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Abstract

Purpose

The Gaza Strip in Palestine is suffering from a shortage of water and energy. To manage the current situation and address future issues, practical approaches need to be adopted to enhance water and energy efficiency. The purpose of this paper is to elicit professionals’ perceptions of the drivers affecting water and related energy consumption in residential buildings in the Gaza Strip.

Design/methodology/approach

In total, 19 drivers were identified from previous research and modified according to the results of a pilot study. These drivers were ranked under a Relative Importance Index (RII). A questionnaire survey was then administered and non-random purposive sampling used. The population of this study comprised stakeholders, including the United Nation Refugee Work Agency, Gaza Strip Governorates Municipalities, and the Coastal Municipalities Water Utility.

Findings

The results of all drivers (i.e. RII=71.43 per cent, mean=3.57) indicated that the respondents agreed about which drivers were affecting water and energy consumption. The sign Test-value was a positive 4.55 and the p-value was 0.000 (i.e. smaller than the level of significance a=0.050). The means of these drivers differed significantly and were greater than the hypothesised value of 3. Accordingly, it was concluded that the drivers investigated significantly affected household residents’ consumption of water and energy in residential buildings. The study revealed that climate changes, knowledge of how to conserve water and energy and household size were the most important drivers affecting household residents’ consumption of water and related energy in residential buildings.

Practical implications

The study will assist the parties concerned about water and energy use to be aware and understand the drivers affecting water and related energy the consumption in order to provide household residents with the necessary knowledge to ensure conservation and sustainability. Although this study related to a narrow geographical area in Palestine, the findings could be useful to similar locations in the Middle East and Africa.

Originality/value

This research demonstrates the drivers affecting water and related energy the consumption in residential buildings in the Gaza Strip which is considered the first study in Palestine and in the region. The study provides a useful platform for the development of appropriate water and energy strategies in Palestine and other similar geographical locations in the Middle East.

Keywords

Acknowledgements

The authors are very grateful to the anonymous reviewers and editor for their valuable comments which have let to the improvement of the manuscript.

Citation

Enshassi, A., Elzebdeh, S. and Mohamed, S. (2017), "Drivers affecting household residents’ water and related energy consumption in residential buildings", International Journal of Building Pathology and Adaptation, Vol. 35 No. 2, pp. 159-175. https://doi.org/10.1108/IJBPA-01-2017-0002

Publisher

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Emerald Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2017, Emerald Publishing Limited