Tuesday, October 02, 2007
Sustainable Water Resources Management - A Business Perspective
This was a panel discussion involving four participants.
Even though it was billed as a "business perspective," Steve Busch, the head of Busch Distributors and the chairman of the Greater Moscow Alliance, had really the only perspective from a businessman's viewpoint. One of the panelists was wearing a large "No Iraq War" button, which I thought was very inappropriate and detracted from what he had to say.
Steve stated that business requires government to be predictable. Rules and regulations have to be consistently and reliably applied. Government has no business managing competition and risk in a free market. Government's role is to provide reliable municipal services.
Sustainable water management to Busch means that local government is taking steps to have enough water for local citizens who live and work here now and in the future. The Palouse is not the Desert Southwest. We must investigate other sources of water, such as surface water. Growth will happen. There will always be supply and demand. You cannot concentrate on one at the expense of the other.
Mr. No Iraq War implied that "sustainability" meant preserving the aquifers forever, not just for 100 years. Of course, if the aquifers cannot be recharged, the only way to do that is to not only halt all growth on the Palouse, but completely evacuate the area.
Both Steve and Paul Kimmell stated that business comnmunity is underengaged in this process.