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Making the Most of the Water We Have

Making the Most of the Water We Have: the soft path approach to water management
Edited by David B. Brooks, Oliver M. Brandes and Stephen Gurman

About this book
Based on the "soft path" approach to the energy sector, a transition is now under way to a soft path for water. This approach starts by ensuring that ecosystem needs for water are satisfied and then undertakes a radical approach to reducing human uses of water by economic and social incentives, including open decision-making, water markets and equitable pricing, and the application of super-efficient technology, all applied in ways that avoid jeopardizing quality of life.

The soft path for water is therefore a management strategy that frees up water by curbing water waste. This book is the first to present and apply the water soft path approach. It has three aims: to bring to a wider audience the concept and the potential of water soft paths; to demonstrate that soft path analysis is analytical and practical, and not just "eco-dreaming"; and to indicate that soft paths are not only conceptually attractive but that they can be made economically and politically feasible.

The book includes a tool kit for planners and other practitioners.

Review quotes
"It is the first book to present a comprehensive view of the soft path and focuses on water solutions, not just technologies but also analysis methods and governance. The importance of this book is its vision and attempt to persuade readers – stakeholders, educators, the media, NGOs, and water managers – to adhere to the soft path paradigm."—Water International.

"Making the Most of the Water We Have lays out the key ingredients of a water soft path in plain language. It makes its case with some really fine writing, especially in the first four chapters... The real achievement of this book is that it offers details regarding soft path water planning possibilities for rich nations and poor nations alike."—Robert Paehlke, Critical Policy Studies.

About the editors
David B. Brooks was Canada's first Director of Energy Conservation, and later spent 15 years with International Development Research Centre on overseas projects on energy, water and natural resource management. He was one of the founders of Friends of the Earth Canada and now serves as its senior advisor for fresh water. Oliver Brandes is water sustainability project leader and associate director at the POLIS Project on Ecological Governance, University of Victoria, Canada. Stephen Gurman is an environmental consultant and writer, based in Ottawa, Canada.

To preorder this book, please contact us.

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