Dilemmas

Tackling water shortages          


Tackling water shortages

You are a member of the local city council. In recent years, the amount of drinking water supplied to your city has been insufficient. Discuss the various solutions proposed below and weigh up the associated pros and cons.

As manufacturing industries typically consume substantial amounts of water, a “closed circle” system could be introduced for high-demand factories.

Positive

Pros

In the long-term, costs related to industrial water consumption would fall.

Negative

Cons

A system of this kind requires an initial investment and skilled technical management.

Water saving can be encouraged by installing water meters in homes and offices, obliging people to pay for the quantity of water that they actually use.

Positive

Pros

This approach may lead to people being more responsible about water consumption.

Negative

Cons

Installing meters in all the required locations would demand a significant investment in terms of time and financial resources.

Up to 50 percent of drinking water resources are estimated to be lost during distribution. Investments should therefore be made to improve the water supply system and enhance management procedures in order to reduce water loss.

Positive

Pros

Improvements to the distribution system would pay for themselves over time.

Negative

Cons

This approach would require a significant up-front investment.