Water Policy in Australia
The Impact of Change and UncertaintyEdited by:
Presents a comprehensive account of the country’s critical water issues and provides expert perspectives from behavioral and institutional economists, engineers, hydrologists, sociologists, and water law specialists.
Few policy areas in recent history have the attention of the Australian public and polity as much as those relating to water. Water Policy in Australia considers the current policy reform agenda from agricultural, environmental, and cultural perspectives. It presents a comprehensive account of the country’s critical water issues and provides expert perspectives from behavioral and institutional economists, engineers, hydrologists, sociologists, and water law specialists. The environment can no longer support Australia’s legacy of institutions, norms, and values relating to the exploitation of water resources. + Full description
Until the 1980s, the engineer was 'king,' and policymakers viewed water as an endless resource for driving economic growth. However, the last twenty years, policymakers have been forced to acknowledge that it is not possible to perpetually supply more water at a low cost. Consequently, the country has begun to focus on water resource management through legislative and institutional change-attempting to allocate water in a more economically efficient and socially and environmentally acceptable manner. Water Policy in Australia provides insight into the challenges of institutional change, as well as valuable lessons on the design of property rights for complex resources.
The editor and contributors look beyond recent reform efforts and address the hydrological, biophysical, economic, and social factors at play in Australia. The book addresses pertinent issues, such as irrigation in the Murray-Darling basin, one of Australia’s largest drainage divisions; the progression from common law riparian rights to share-based entitlements that encourage sustainable water use; and the potential outcomes of the recent National Water Initiative, a wide-ranging strategy to improve water management and simultaneously maintain healthy groundwater and river systems.
The hardback edition was published in 2008 and the paperback edition in May 2011.- Short description