Rethinking water: Growing population, limited supply mean costs destined to rise, experts say (Posted By Mike Mecke)


Published: Saturday, Jan. 28, 2012

Is water too cheap?

Perhaps the most obvious indication that it is, said Michael Webber, a University of Texas professor who heads a research group focused on water and energy, is how freely we use it.

“A hundred years from now, your grandkids would ask you, `You sprayed what on your lawn? That’s crazy,’” Webber said.

Watering lawns will seem as crazy as throwing diamonds on our lawns; we’re throwing the world’s most important resource – clean drinking water – on the ground, Webber said.

The idea that water is too cheap is endorsed by several water planners and policymakers.

“Water right now is underpriced,” said Becky Motal, general manager of the Lower Colorado River Authority.

A growing population requires more water, which the state says can’t come from one source. Addressing the state’s water needs requires a range of solutions, most of which are expensive.

“For most of our recent history, we just treated (water) as if we had an unlimited supply of it. We’re finding to our dismay that that’s not true,” said Andrew Sansom, executive director of the River Systems Institute at Texas State University…………………………….. 

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