I don’t want to get into the taxation argument because the rhetoric will never end. How the government raises the necessary funding to keep the country running are up to minds far brighter, or at least far more vocal them me. How the country spends its money is much more interesting to me because cuts in spending affect us directly. One of the cuts that the government has found to be the least objectionable is spending on maintaining clean water. Why not… we are so lucky to have clean water. The reality is that our water is not clean for most of us and it is about to get a lot worse.
For many years, we have scowled at China for their complete lack of interest in protecting their environment at the expense of economic development. Our feeling of superiority allows us some measure of satisfaction while we continue to export more and more jobs abroad in the name of corporate earnings.
As our government is slashing the Clean Water Act funding, the Chinese government and private sector are investing to reverse the damage to its water resources and provide clean water to its people
The mainland’s rapidly expanding private water sector, valued at $48 billion, is currently the third largest in the world, according to research firm GWI Global Water, behind the United States at $110 billion and Japan at $59 billion. Analysts estimate the industry will triple to reach at least $150 billion over the next five years.
We can keep our water safe for drinking. However, we are not investing in securing a clean water supply in the future with proper structural investments. We are already seeing the negative effects of a lack of planning. The relief from water shortage concerns that the southwest is enjoying this year is a result of a winter that provided an abundant ice pack, not from planning for the future. What happens in the future when the icepack is small? When municipalities and counties and states start having massive water restrictions, it will affect businesses, agriculture, and yes all of us in our own homes.
Spending cuts are needed. I’m happy I’m not burdened with having to make tough decisions about which budgets get cut. All I do know is that there is nothing more important than the air that we breathe and the water that we drink. Our municipalities are burdened with budgetary issues and it seems that nobody cares what we are drinking in our tap water, or whether there will be enough clean water to meet our future needs, as long as our taxes don’t go up. Maybe if we started producing products at home and creating new jobs, thereby increasing the tax base, we could afford to make the structural changes to provide us with safe and healthy drinking water in the future.
The opinions expressed in this article are those of the author.