Markets, policy, and the allocation of water resources among sectors: Constraints and opportunities

Posted January 2006

By Theordore M. Horbulyk

Presented in the Spring 2005 edition of the Canadian Water Resources Journal, this paper examines the potential for economic instruments to improve the allocation of water resources across sectors in the economy, and identifies the policy issues and policy research that will be prerequisites to achieving this potential. The topic is defined broadly enough to consider current practices and innovative proposals for definition of property rights—that is, for the types of entitlements and activities to which these economic instruments may relate. Consideration is given to issues of jurisdiction within and across levels of government, especially where effective deployment of specific economic instruments might introduce new elements of public revenue and expenditure along with new requirements to exercise regulatory authority and enforcement efforts.

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