Over at GreenWatch we now have archived an interactive list of the “worst environmental prophecies of catastrophic doom.” It is a list of eleven of the most interesting and pointed cases of environmental activists raising the red alert, and the unintended fall out from it.
This week we burst the bubble of “water scarcity.”
My esteemed co-worker Eric had it just right, when he lamented against these fears, last month. If liberals and greens get their way water will be just another resource subject to the “tragedy of the commons.”
Alarmists fear poor countries and people will run out of fresh water because Western nations are consuming more water than ever. This false prophecy fails to recognize that lack of infrastructure, not supply, is responsible for inadequate fresh water supplies in the less-developed world. Alarmists also oppose well-drilling, irrigation, and dam-building to tap into existing water supplies. Another technique, desalinization of ocean water, has provided the arid Middle East with potable water for more than 40 years. Water-saving markets and technologies can address this problem: In drought-stricken regions market-driven volume pricing cuts the subsidy of flat rate below-market pricing to heavy users of water.