Technology is easy, but it’s water policy that matters

Brett Walton had a piece last week that suggested an appropriate damper for the US water community’s enthusiasm for the Obama administration’s recent Big Water Push:

The budget request drew praise from water experts, who, even with the small sum, were happy to see more recognition from the country’s leadership. But those same voices note that the most fruitful prospects for refashioning the country’s relationship with water are not technological. They are political: changing the laws, policies, and incentives that guide water use at the local, state, and federal levels. In other words, tinkering with the rules of the game, not just adding new pieces to the board.

“It makes sense to invest in research and technology,” Doug Kenney, director of the Western Water Policy Program at the University of Colorado, told Circle of Blue. “The key is that it needs to be balanced with policy changes. There’s nothing wrong with technology and research. But it’s the easy piece, I’m afraid.”