International tensions around water are rising in many of the world's most volatile regions. The policy recipe pursued by the West, and imposed on governments elsewhere, is to pass control over water to private interests, which simply accelerates the cycle of inequality and deprivation. California, as well as China, South Africa, Mexico and countries on every continent already face a crisis. This book exposes the enormity of the problem, the dangers of the proposed solution and the alternative, which is to recognize access to water as a fundamental human right, not dependent on ability to pay.
Table of Contents
Acknowledgements * Introduction * Treaty Initiative * I The Crises: Red Alert * Endangered Planet * Dying of Thirst * II The Politics: Everything for Sale * Global Water Lords * Emergent Water Cartel * Global Nexus * III The Way Forward: Fightback * The Standpoint * The Way Forward * Notes * Index
Maude Barlow is the national chairperson of the Council of Canadians, and the bestselling author of twelve other books. She is a director of the International Forum on Globalization and co-founder of the Blue Planet Project, a global citizens' movement to protect water. Tony Clarke is the director of the Polaris Institute on corporations for the International Forum of Globalization. He is also the author of 'Silent Coup: Confronting the Big Business Takeover of Canada'. Together, Barlow and Clarke have co-authored three books on the Multilateral Agreement on Investment, and were the Canadian leaders in the successful struggle to scuttle that deal.
'[A] well-researched book [that] provides a sobering, in-depth look at the growing scarcity of fresh water and the increasing privatization and corporate control of this non-renewable resource.' Library Journal 'After reading this non-fiction account of the globe's shrinking water supply, it is hard not to think how privileged we are to enjoy simple morning showers, a glass of water, or one-hour drives to the beach.' Winnipeg Free Press 'To describe a book on water as 'refreshing' may be a clich but the directness and commitment that springs from these pages is both engaging and motivating.' New Agriculturist Online 'In Blue Gold, activists Maude Barlow and Tony Clarke offer an angry and persuasive account of how this (false sense of security) has damaged the environment and how the privatization of once-public resources threatens to exacerbate the problem.' Business Week 'This book points out the need for further research into water management, institutional and policy issues, principles and practices.' Natural Resources Forum 'Blue Gold provides an alternative viewpoint to that presented by many international institutions. The book is a must for campaginers against privatization of water services and makes interesting reading for anyone working in water and sanitation services.' Water Lines