|Creeks feeding the Santiam and Willamette will be low in 2040!|
|June 23rd and September 15th at Detroit Lake|
Tomorrow, Friday the 25th, the Salem City Club's talk is "Confronting Drought and Water Scarcity in Oregon."I spent the summer documenting the #drought in #Oregon. View this on your computer for an interactive slider. http://t.co/WG5wgPnImX— Brent Drinkut (@BrentDrinkut) September 23, 2015
It'll probably be more about water management and less about the antecedent causes and exacerbating factors of climate change, but it's still important. As we built out places like the Mill Creek Industrial Park with promises of copious, and cheap water, maybe we need to rethink priorities.
This is a link to an Oregon Business story about the Mill Creek industrial park. From the piece:Did you know Salem has the largest state-certified industrial land on I-5 between Sacramento and Seattle? http://t.co/AsWy7beB7z— Salem Planning (@Salem_Planning) July 17, 2015
Assets include more than land.Are we sure Mill Creek can supply this in addition to supplying drinking water for Salem? There look to be strong reasons to doubt this.
“One reason food processors are interested is that we have an abundant quantity of water,” Arthur says. “Mill Creek can supply more than 1 million gallons per day, and that can expand.”
We will also need to think about how we subsidize and depress markets.
In a response to the Pope's encyclical, Laudato Si', William Nordhaus writes:William Nordhaus: The pope overlooks how market-based solutions such as cap-and-trade can help slow climate change http://t.co/5JnoubuaeK— NY Review of Books (@nybooks) September 21, 2015
Putting a low price on valuable environmental resources is a phenomenon that pervades modern society. Agricultural water is not scarce in California; it is underpriced. Flights are stacked up on runways because takeoffs and landings are underpriced. People wait for hours in traffic jams because road use is unpriced. People die premature deaths from small sulfur particles in the air because air pollution is underpriced. And the most perilous of all environmental problems, climate change, is taking place because virtually every country puts a price of zero on carbon dioxide emissions.On the surface it sounds uncharitable, even unjust, to price things like water. But if you remember Jeffrey Tumlin's witty remarks about the difference between a Soviet bread line and an American market in our approach to parking, many of our problems are caused by under pricing valuable things and making people wait in line, actual or metaphorical. If people at the bottom of a market need support in order to enter that market, appropriate subsidies or supports can be arranged, and then the market can still sort out a more efficient aggregate delivery.
|via Upright Cyclist|
Making water more expensive seems like a hardship, but if we don't start now to build systems and habits of using water more efficiently, in a generation when we really face scarcity, it will be that much harder and the rupture that much greater.
The City Club meets at Mission Mill and doors open at 11:15am, Friday the 25th. (Registration looks closed, so I don't know how strict they are about letting people in.)