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by Mac Nichols, engineer and Mannkal Advisory Council member

Regarding this article on water reform, here are some crucial points to consider:

1. Water supply is provided by people for people, and, as such is best controlled by the profit and loss system. Those companies bringing out the best water are well patronised and make profits. Those who do not are not as well patronised or fail altogether.

2. Many state controlled water utilities are excellent. But the fact is, at all times everywhere, both the profit and the loss systems provide an ongoing stimulus for all normal human endeavours to succeed.

3. Between 1996 and 2010 Perth’s population has increased by roughly a third. Presumably our water consumption has increased the same amount or higher.

4. We have not built any new dams during the same time frame. Instead we are paying for desalination and other and water costs are escalating. Blind Freddie can see that we need to increase dam capacity.

5. As Adam succinctly puts his case below; stop political chicanery, allow the customer to select which entity or company can supply water which provides the foundation for COMPETITION and thus the motive for profit and loss, and lets start building dams again.

This is precisely the system that we as a people have stumbled upon that works for the economic development other natural resources and has worked in the past. Our elected politicians and their supporting bureaucracy are the impediment, not the water or a nebulous climate change or wasteful consumers.

And it is worth considering the words of world authority on population matters Julian L. Simon in his book The Ultimate Resource II:

Incredible as it may seem at first, the term “finite” is not only inappropriate but is downright misleading when applied to natural resources, from both the practical and philosophical points of view.  As with many important arguments, the finiteness issue is “just semantic.”  Yet the semantics of resource scarcity muddle public discussion and bring about wrongheaded policy decisions.

One can find his work here.