The objective of this research was to investigate the current status of water-collection behaviours and their determinants, which are associated with the burden of collecting water. This research was focused on the remote hinterlands of Nepal, and little is known about the residents’ livelihoods; therefore, particular attention was paid to the household burdens in terms of the time devoted to water-collection activities. A survey was conducted in households from mountainous regions of Nepal whose infrastructure is limited in terms of poor water supply and access to electricity. The results of the survey indicated that one or two members of a household were responsible for collecting water, and approximately 40% of households used multiple sites. Moreover, household members visited their collection location approximately 3–4 times per day. Based on the water-collection behaviours of each household member, an average of 148.6 min were used for water-collection activities each day. The factors associated with the total time devoted to water-collection activities include the number of household members, the sex of the household head, the number of years of education of the household members, and the share of children and women engaged in water collection. The estimation results also indicated that members of households with access to water storage spent less time collecting water. The results yield key information from villagers in remote mountainous regions, and substantial improvement is pivotal for achieving universal water access under sustainable development goals.
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The authors thank the editors and anonymous referees for their constructive comments and suggestions to improve the quality of an earlier version of the manuscript. This research was supported by the Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science, and Technology, Japan, Grant-in-Aid for Scientific Research KAKENHI (Nos. 25257102, 26740057, 17K12854, 19K12446) and the Research Institute for Humanity and Nature, Feasibility Studies “The Water-Energy Nexus in Small-Scale Distributed Systems for Poverty Alleviation”. The authors greatly appreciate the assistance and cooperation of survey respondents, field investigators, survey coordinators, and data entry personnel.
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Komatsu, S., Yamamoto, Y., Ito, Y. et al. Water for life: ceaseless routine efforts for collecting drinking water in remote mountainous villages of Nepal. Environ Dev Sustain 22, 7909–7925 (2020). https://doi.org/10.1007/s10668-019-00552-9
- Water collection
- Remote mountainous villages