Water Resources Allocation and Agriculture: Transitioning from Open to Regulated Access
The book brings together a range of leading scholars and practitioners to compile an international account of water allocation policies supporting a transition to sustainable water use in regions where agriculture is the dominant water use. In Section 1, the collection canvasses five key cross-cutting issues shaping the challenge of sustainable water allocation policy, such as legal and economic perspectives, the role of politics, the setting of environmental flows, and the importance of indigenous rights. Section 2 presents 13 national, state and transboundary case studies of water allocation policy, covering cases from Europe, the Americas, Central Asia, the Middle East and the Pacific region. These case studies highlight novel and innovative elements of water allocation regimes, which respond to the cross-cutting issues addressed in Section 1, as well as local challenges and social and environmental imperatives. The book provides a comprehensive account of water allocation in a range of international settings and provides a reference point for practitioners and scholars worldwide wishing to draw on the latest advances on how to design and implement sustainable water allocation systems.
ISBN: 9781789062779 (print)
ISBN: 9781789062786 (eBook)
ISBN: 9781789062793 (ePUB)
Chapter 2: The politics of groundwater allocation and the transition from open access
William Blomquist, Christina Babbitt, 2022. "The politics of groundwater allocation and the transition from open access", Water Resources Allocation and Agriculture: Transitioning from Open to Regulated Access, Josselin Rouillard, Christina Babbitt, Edward Challies, Jean-Daniel Rinaudo
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Groundwater allocation is a key institutional instrument for restoring sustainability in overdrawn aquifers, especially those that have been used on an open-access basis in the past. Many suggestions for improving groundwater management - pumping reductions, fees on overuse, transferability of pumping rights or shares - are based on the establishment of groundwater allocations. Therefore, how groundwater allocations can be created and maintained is a critical foundational issue in sustainable water resource management. In this chapter, we review the institutional and policy issues associated with establishing groundwater allocations: how they differ from and relate to allocations of surface water; the various values to be taken into account when developing allocations; and why the allocation of groundwater is an inescapably political process. We also review examples of groundwater allocation efforts and identify some patterns among those examples. Combining the review and the examples, we present and explain a set of considerations regarding the process of establishing groundwater allocations. Our considerations are intended to be useful to practitioners as well as researchers interested in this subject, and therefore potentially beneficial in practical ways in the advancement of water sustainability.