Water must be at centre of economic planning

THE country’s water predicament is a symptom of a much deeper crisis that goes well beyond the effects of the El Nino phenomenon and can be attended to only through a fundamental shift in economic governance.

The crisis is now spilling over to livelihoods, food production and health, affecting entire communities and pushing hundreds of thousands of citizens deeper into poverty. While appeals to save water through wiser use at the household level may be important, they risk missing what is really wrong with water governance in SA.

Many large corporations have eagerly bought into the “war on leaks” campaign. At a recent meeting on water stewardship in Sandton, managers presented the results of projects they have introduced to tackle leaks and spillages in poor communities, where the state of water infrastructure is abysmal and wastage more common.

What these companies failed to disclose, however, is the amount of water embedded in their own production processes and value chains, which is often the elephant in the room during water governance debates.

 

Read the full article here: http://www.bdlive.co.za/opinion/2015/11/30/natural-resources-must-be-at-centre-of-economic-planning

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