LETTER:Water meters: an equitable cure for shortages?

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The Independent Online
From Mr Roger Martin

Sir: To suppose that demand for water (or any other physical thing) can go on increasing indefinitely is childish. Sooner or later, demand management for all finite resources is inevitable; and metering/pricing is the obvious method.

It can be made equitable by the simple technique of two-tier metering; whereby every household gets a basic ration cheap, and then pays heavily for additional units. In an electronic age, the billing process can be very flexible - eg, taking account of the number of people in a household or their special needs.

If only the Environment Act had put an obligation on the key regulators (water and energy) to have regard to the environmental impact of their decisions, we would now be having a more sophisticated debate on water resource policy.

Yours faithfully,

Roger Martin

Director, Somerset Wildlife Trust

Bridgwater, Somerset

22 August