19 Jul 2009
Wrong in One Picture
This graphic (via the AWWA) shows that median charges for water are the same in the West as in the Northeast. Now, we all know that the West has water "shortages," and now we see why -- the water is too cheap! (10 ccf is 7,480 gallons.)
NE prices are the same because they -- like prices in the West -- reflect the cost of service, NOT water scarcity. If scarcity prices were included, the price of water in the NE would probably be the same, but prices in the West would be much higher.
Bottom Line: Water shortages in the West are manmade -- that's because we do not raise the price of water (unlike every other commodity) when supplies are running short. Don't blame the drought -- blame politicians and water managers.