Water Engineer Tells Sharon Kleyne That Charging True Value of Water to Consumers Will Encourage Conservation

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Sharon Kleyne interviews Water Engineer Neil Grigg, PhD about Water Conservation.

One way to encourage water conservation and help the public understand water’s immense value in their lives, might be to charge consumers what water is actually worth. The suggestion was recently proposed by noted Water Engineer Neil Grigg, PhD, during an interview by radio host and water researcher Sharon Kleyne.

Dr. Grigg is a Professor of Civil Engineering at Colorado State University and former Director of the CSU Water Resource Research Institute. Sharon Kleyne is Founder of Bio Logic Aqua Research, a water and health research and product development center. Kleyne hosts the globally syndicated Sharon Kleyne Hour Power of Water® radio show on VoiceAmerica and Apple iTunes.

Sharon Kleyne Interviewed Dr. Grigg on her radio show of August 5, 2013. Grigg is the author of Infrastructure Finance (Wiley, 2010).

Both Kleyne and Grigg expressed concern that one reason the US public makes little effort at water conservation, is lack of understanding. They take water for granted and do not fully value either the importance of water as the basis of all life on Earth or the tremendous group effort required to make clean, pure water instantly available with a simple turn of a tap handle.

In much of the world, according to Dr. Grigg, piped-in water is either unavailable or unreliable, and is not always safe. Water consumers in those areas have no difficulty understanding the value of water or the importance of water conservation. Worldwide, one billion people lack access to sufficient water and 2.6 billion do not have access to safe water. Five million people a year die from diseases related to either not drinking enough water, not practicing proper person hygiene or drinking contaminated water.

Obtaining one glass of fresh drinking water, says Grigg, or water to wash dishes, bathe or flush the toilet, requires a complex water collection, purification and distribution infrastructure employing millions of individuals nationwide. The cooperation of government and private industry is also required, enabled by legislation resulting from long and often bitter negotiations and lawsuits. With global climate change and increasing drought and population growth, water exporting states like Colorado may soon be unable to spare their water.                

Because of water’s irreplaceable importance to health and economic development, both Kleyne and Grigg would like to see water remain relatively inexpensive. Their hope is that consumers will learn on their own not to take water for granted and to practice water conservation so that it will never become necessary to charge water’s full value to consumers.

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Mikaylah Roggasch
Bio Logic Aqua Research-Rogue Media
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