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Municipal/regional water supply discussion


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#61 VicHockeyFan

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Posted 01 June 2009 - 08:51 PM

It's too bad water isn't provided entirely by the private sector. Then we would have an abundant supply dependably delivered at an affordable price by someone who couldn't take advantage of their monopoly to treat us like criminals for unauthorized consumption of water. We would also have the option of taking our business elsewhere, instead of having to go to court or appeal to an Ombudsman for justice.


Exactly my thoughts.

Choice, like this.... http://www.energyshop.com/

#62 G-Man

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Posted 02 June 2009 - 06:48 AM

Yeah privatization would open the heavens so that the resevoir was magically always at 100%...

#63 davek

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Posted 02 June 2009 - 07:47 AM

Yeah privatization would open the heavens so that the resevoir was magically always at 100%...


Why rely on sarcasm, when you can turn to reason?

Privatization would open the doors to competition, so suppliers would have to innovate in order to provide optimal service to every sector in the market, instead of threatening consumers for failure to use water in the state-approved fashion. If low reserves were a problem, rather than sending spies around to cite people for their failure to adhere to rationing, private suppliers would develop alternate sources of supply, while other entrepreneurs would provide means for customers to conserve their use of market-priced water. Reservoir levels would remain high.

There is no rationing of milk, or orange juice, or beer, yet government controlled water must be ladled out even though it falls free from the sky.

#64 gumgum

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Posted 02 June 2009 - 07:59 AM

Oh please. There's a finite amount of water on souther Vancouver Island. You can't get blood from a stone.

#65 VicHockeyFan

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Posted 02 June 2009 - 08:06 AM

Oh please. There's a finite amount of water on souther Vancouver Island. You can't get blood from a stone.


No there isn't. We have no local supply of gasoline and hardly any local food supply but we still never have a shortage.

#66 pseudotsuga

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Posted 02 June 2009 - 08:12 AM

Given the nature of water delivery to homes through a network of pipes, how would opening up the market be desirable?
Not sure I'd want my water delivered by truck, or several different companies operating the underground system...although some kind of household rainfall capture system would be cool.

#67 yodsaker

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Posted 02 June 2009 - 09:45 AM

The water from the sky may be free but the delivery systems cost money to build, maintain and operate. I don't really want three different private outfits constantly tearing up roads to get at their pipes or building three different networks.
Public ownership ain't perfect but overall it serves us well notwithstanding the zealot patrols busting people for repairing their sprinklers.

#68 VicHockeyFan

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Posted 02 June 2009 - 10:33 AM

The water from the sky may be free but the delivery systems cost money to build, maintain and operate. I don't really want three different private outfits constantly tearing up roads to get at their pipes or building three different networks.
Public ownership ain't perfect but overall it serves us well notwithstanding the zealot patrols busting people for repairing their sprinklers.


That not the way it works. See my example of how it goes in Ontario with electricity and gas. Same network, different marketers.

http://www.energyshop.com/

#69 davek

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Posted 02 June 2009 - 11:14 AM

Because none of us are water entrepreneurs, we lack the incentives to develop solutions to the challenges of delivering water. Perhaps existing supply lines would be strata titled, and suppliers would compete to provide water on a neighbourhood by neighbourhood basis. That would minimize the tearing up of streets. We should not conclude from our personal inability to foresee solutions that no solutions will arise.

Market pricing would discourage a great deal of the waste that occurs in current usage, and there is enormous potential in desalinization and greywater recycling. We do not suffer rationing and threats from the government because there is a finite supply of water, we suffer because no one in government has the incentives to improve its supply.

#70 VicHockeyFan

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Posted 02 June 2009 - 11:23 AM

We do not suffer rationing and threats from the government because there is a finite supply of water, we suffer because no one in government has the incentives to improve its supply.


...or decrease its use, other than through rationing.

#71 G-Man

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Posted 02 June 2009 - 11:33 AM

You only need a solution when there is a problem. We have very cheap water any additional of a private market is only going to make it more expensive.

I like our current system if there were a problem this discussion would have some use but if there is only the problem as raised by RJag then that can be resolved through a government body such as the Ombudsman, end of story.

#72 Bernard

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Posted 02 June 2009 - 12:50 PM

In various locations around the world where water has gone from public to private provision there has been an increase in supply. This has come about because the companies have investing in the delivery system and dramatically lowered the loss of water in the system before it made it to the public.

A private company can make the investment because they see the long term financial benefit. The public sector is stuck within a paradigm that does encourage capital upgrades soon enough. The public sector also does nothing to encourage efficiency in their system.

Delivery of water to homes is a defacto monopoly, so any private provision of this sort of service would be subject to a high degree of scrutiny. A private company would end up being more transparent and open to the public than the current system.

Meanwhile, the CRD wants us to less water, how about raising the rates until we use less? How about a graduated system, 1000 litres a year a almost nothing, 10 000 at the current rate and then boost it up dramatically from there. Ideally I would like to see a 100% cost recovery for water sewage based on usage. None of this should be paid for through property taxes.

#73 G-Man

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Posted 02 June 2009 - 12:52 PM

^ Water is paid by usage. Not by property tax.

#74 Bernard

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Posted 02 June 2009 - 12:53 PM

^ Water is paid by usage. Not by property tax.


but sewage is not. I see it as all part of the same thing.

#75 G-Man

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Posted 02 June 2009 - 12:59 PM

Actually have a metre on your toilet would be great.

It would encourage the sale of those hilarious signs:

"If its yellow let it mellow.
If its brown flush it down.
"

#76 rjag

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Posted 02 June 2009 - 01:14 PM

but sewage is not. I see it as all part of the same thing.


Actually, you're wrong there. Our facilities in Keating have sewer meters and we pay about $750 every 4 months per building for this, it varies based on the number of people working in each building.

#77 davek

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Posted 02 June 2009 - 01:19 PM

You only need a solution when there is a problem.


State-mandated rationing indicates there is a supply problem. We want more water, and the existence of a government monopoly interferes with the efforts of the private sector to provide it.

We have very cheap water...


Even when used at the state-approved time, in the state-approved way, it is likely not as cheap as it would be when supplied in the absence of a government monopoly. And if you are caught using it otherwise, the cost can rise sharply, particularly if you try to resist.

... if there is only the problem as raised by RJag then that can be resolved through a government body such as the Ombudsman, end of story.


Even if there was only the problem raised by rjag, I think most people would prefer a system where expressing their dissatisfaction is no more bothersome than taking their business to a competitor over a system where the process begins with initiating lengthy administrative procedures.

#78 VicHockeyFan

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Posted 02 June 2009 - 01:27 PM

The water from the sky may be free but the delivery systems cost money to build, maintain and operate. I don't really want three different private outfits constantly tearing up roads to get at their pipes or building three different networks.
Public ownership ain't perfect but overall it serves us well notwithstanding the zealot patrols busting people for repairing their sprinklers.


That not the way it works. See my example of how it goes in Ontario with electricity and gas. Same network, different marketers.

http://www.energyshop.com/

That not the way it works. See my example of how it goes in Ontario with electricity and gas. Same network, different marketers.

http://www.energyshop.com/

Public ownership ain't perfect but overall it serves us well notwithstanding the zealot patrols busting people for repairing their sprinklers


What? You kiddin' me? The public utility systme we have now makes us fall behind on maintenance, as we let political decisions dictate replacement rates, because politicians can't raise taxes significantly.

#79 G-Man

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Posted 02 June 2009 - 02:42 PM

We don't have a supply problem, if anything we have a consumption problem.

People in western society are very wasteful when comes to water. If anything we should be putting more restrictions on water use to lower consumption even more.

#80 yodsaker

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Posted 02 June 2009 - 03:23 PM

Where I lived in France the water was privatized and the water company were awful. Unresponsive, surly and certainly not cheap. Monopoly behaviour with no one to complain to.

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