Tag Archives: Drinking water

Film Reflection: Thirst

After watching the documentary Thirst (Snitow, 2004), it becomes clear that the question as to whether or not water should be privatized is not easily answered. There is some evidence that privatization of infrastructure services is good for the consumer (pricing, effectiveness) and thus pressure would be on all providers to ensure the best possible service. However, the question of privatization opens many other complex questions. While there are many valid arguments for and against the privatization of water, there are no easy answers. What is the difference between water and food, which is privatized? Is a form of “water farming” possible or feasible? What differentiates owning water from owning land, or land with water on it? If water is owned, is it possible to legally prohibit use of that water from commercial sale? Is access to safe water a human right? Are there even any human rights, and if so, says who? Is water a part of national security; should it be controlled by the government? Is water sacred, as Klaus Toepfer has suggested, and if so, is this a valid reason not to privatize water?

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