Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Dealing with the global water crisis - leaving it to a market or getting pricing right?

This interview with Maud Barlow based on her new book is worth a listen. Her book, Blue Covenant: The Global Water Crisis and the coming battle for the right to water is published by Black Inc Books. In this interview she makes the case for getting water pricing right within a framework of water being a universal human right. She is, however, critical of Australia's market-based approach.

Here are some comments on Maud Barlow's book:

'An Inconvenient Truth of water.

“Imagine a world in twenty years, in which no substantive progress has been made to provide basic wastewater service in the Third World, or to force industry and industrial agriculture production to stop polluting water systems, or to curb the mass movement of water by pipeline, tanker and other diversion, which will have created huge new swaths of desert."

“Desalination plants will ring the world’s oceans, many of them run by nuclear power; corporate nanotechnology will clean up sewage water and sell it to private utilities who will sell it back to us at a huge profit; the rich will drink only bottled water found in the few remote parts of the world left or sucked from the clouds by machines, while the poor die in increasing numbers. This is not science fiction. This is where the world is headed unless we change course.”