My vision for the future of water is embedded around the notion that every living being that needs access to water to lead a comfortable life has enough to meet their basic needs. This will require us to lead with values rooted in compassion, care, and willingness to adapt for our environment and each-other. Recognizing the implications of our actions, ways to remedy them, understanding the value of water through education, and making the appropriate adjustments needed now will save us in the future. We use water like we have no budget, when in reality our habits are not sustainable in the slightest.
At the core of the issue, water pricing is really low meaning there isn’t the incentive to invest money into safeguarding infrastructure and technology. Interventions at a legislative level could be to cap daily water usage calculated based on their inventory such that it is enough to live comfortably, but prevents wastage. For example, humans could be allocated 200 L/day per person after which payment is required beyond this threshold. This pricing could be based on household income to protect people of all classes. This would collectively protect the basic human right and need for water and allow everyone to contribute what they are able to towards a common goal which is preserving our water supply. This could be applied globally, but with different constraints depending on the water stock of each respective region. Furthermore, strategic municipal intervention and action to protect assets can pay off for decades. This could mean that regional budgeting should be required so that we know how to allocate funds to protect and ensure the longevity of our natural services.
Moreover, agriculture which accounts for the largest portion of water use in the world, needs to have more incentive to regulate their water use as they do not pay the full price for the amount that they use. As such, this is what allows product to be priced so low because it does not reflect the true valuation of the water that went into its production. Preventative intervention would be to allocate a certain amount of water to crops based on size and quantity required, after which they are priced to prevent overuse. Product prices could be increased to reflect the true investment of water. The greater implementation of soil moisture monitoring devices would help regulate when water is needed. There could also be implementation of timed water availability which allows for agriculture water to be used during certain times of the day to prevent loss of efficiency due to weather or climate patterns.