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Global 'spot' Market In Water By 2035?

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http://ftalphaville.ft.com/blog/2011/07/21/629881/willem-buiter-thinks-water-will-be-bigger-than-oil/

I expect to see in the near future a massive expansion of investment in the water sector, including the production of fresh, clean water from other sources (desalination, purification), storage, shipping and transportation of water. I expect to see pipeline networks that will exceed the capacity of those for oil and gas today.

I see fleets of water tankers (single-hulled!) and storage facilities that will dwarf those we currently have for oil, natural gas and LNG. I see new canal systems dug for water transportation, similar in ambition and scale to those currently in progress in China, linking the Yangtze River in the South to the Yellow River in the arid north.

I also hope and expect that these new canal ventures will be designed and implemented with a greater awareness of the environmental and social impact of such mega-projects. India will have to engage in investment on a scale comparable to that seen today in China to produce clean water in the best locations and transport it to where the household, industrial and agricultural users are.

Water as an Asset Class

I expect to see a globally integrated market for fresh water within 25 to 30 years. Once the spot markets for water are integrated, futures markets and other derivative water-based financial instruments — puts, calls, swaps — both exchange-traded and OTC will follow. There will be different grades and types of fresh water, just the way we have light sweet and heavy sour crude oil today. Water as an asset class will, in my view, become eventually the single most important physical-commodity based asset class, dwarfing oil, copper, agricultural commodities and precious metals.

Welcome to the future - where the store of value will be everywhere around us, but not a drop to drink!

Sheesh.

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Water prices in Uruguay.

"They" want to control food and "they" want to control water. After that, you will be charged for the air you breath...oops forgot about carbon taxes - they are doing it already.

Exactly, in seriousness there is already major differences in water quality and cost. ‘They’ are just looking to globalise it, like any other basic need.

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Looks like a bubble in the making - time for the smart money to jump in, grow for a few years and then jump out just before someone says: wait a minute this stuff drops out of the sky for free, and the bubble bursts.

A spot market implies a global market. It's unlikely that transporting water around the world will ever be a better bet than purifying what's available locally.

If you want a weird suggestion for the future... if someone cracks the electrical storage in capacitors problem it could make a lot of sense to ship electricity around the world in tankers, and have it delivered to your front door by truck. Seriously!

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Here in Saudi Water depletion is a big big issue. Its currently offset by desalination which is largely 'free' off the back of large gas fired cogen plants.

But gas is in short supply too...

The smart money would see the Kingdom invest in 5/6 large nucs located on the Gulf and Red Sea. 6x3GW would provide the majority of the Kingdoms electrical power needs and the waste heat could deliver 15-20bn litres of desalinated water each day - 600 litres per capita.

Could be done for less than one years current trade surplus.

Edited by Kurt Barlow

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Looks like a bubble in the making - time for the smart money to jump in, grow for a few years and then jump out just before someone says: wait a minute this stuff drops out of the sky for free, and the bubble bursts.

A spot market implies a global market. It's unlikely that transporting water around the world will ever be a better bet than purifying what's available locally.

If you want a weird suggestion for the future... if someone cracks the electrical storage in capacitors problem it could make a lot of sense to ship electricity around the world in tankers, and have it delivered to your front door by truck. Seriously!

Single hulled oil tankers are to be phased out by 2015. Converting them to water tankers may well provide an alternative to the scrap yard.

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A spot market requires that the goods be transportable. The problem with water is that the energy required to move it about is worth more than the water itself.

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A spot market requires that the goods be transportable. The problem with water is that the energy required to move it about is worth more than the water itself.

Which would require energy costs to come down and/or water costs to go up.

As someone working in the waste/water sectors, there has been much attention in the professional literature about water wars, the need for improved/cheaper technologies etc. Water will be huge this century.

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They'll be selling our water companies to the Chinese next..........

Its insane to think that in the future, people in the UK may be unable to afford water, because Chinese Companies control it.

At what point do the people of this country, wake up and snap?

Edited by Milton

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Which would require energy costs to come down and/or water costs to go up.

As someone working in the waste/water sectors, there has been much attention in the professional literature about water wars, the need for improved/cheaper technologies etc. Water will be huge this century.

Nuclear Cogen - Electricity plus gazillions of gallons produced using the waste heat in flash distallation systems. Could even be applied to the new fleet of nukes (should they ever happen) in the UK, at least those in the South East.

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Looks like a bubble in the making - time for the smart money to jump in, grow for a few years and then jump out just before someone says: wait a minute this stuff drops out of the sky for free, and the bubble bursts.

I see a butt tax coming - making it a criminal offence to store unlicensed water which belongs, of course, to the PLC that operates your water supply. Probably a French PLC at the moment, but maybe a private equity outfit soon.

Even now, you can't abstract water from the stream at the bottom of your garden (unless you're an HPC'er in which case you don't have a garden since you STR'd in October 2007). :)

Yep - a butt tax.

edit - wrong emoticon :rolleyes:

Edited by johnny5thumbs

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I see a butt tax coming - making it a criminal offence to store unlicensed water which belongs, of course, to the PLC that operates your water supply.

I have a vague recollection in of some fellow getting sued by a local authority (or similar) for capturing water that fell on his land, but cannot find it.

Here is a case in Utah, where apparently you do not own the rain that falls on your roof, but it isn't the one I was thinking of.

Here's another:

Colorado Water Law requires that precipitation fall to the ground, run off and into the river of the watershed where it fell. Because rights to water are legally allocated in this state, an individual may not capture and use water to which he/she does not have a right. We must remember also that rain barrels don’t help much in a drought because a drought by its very nature supplies little in the way of snow or rain.

and here is a book on Bechtel's attempt to control Bolivia's water supply all driven by demands of the World Bank that Bolivia privatise its water supply or the loans would not be rolled over.

It gets worse. There have been calls to add lithium to public water supplies (see here and here.) Apparently:

One person's right to drink lithium free-water is no greater than another's to drink lithium-enhanced water.

[snip]

I look forward to the day when I can sacrifice whatever specious "liberty" claim I might have in consuming "natural" tap water in order to save the lives of my neighbours and fellow human beings.

Add to that Monsanto suing people for plants growing on their own land and winning, and I think it is pretty clear that complete capture has more or less already come about.

Edited by Tiger Woods?

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Looks like a bubble in the making

I prefer my water without bubbles.

006477.jpg?ts=634137055712

But as they say, water only ever goes up.

Oh wait...

(Curse you gravity.)

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Colorado Water Law requires that precipitation fall to the ground, run off and into the river of the watershed where it fell. Because rights to water are legally allocated in this state, an individual may not capture and use water to which he/she does not have a right.

Which immediately raise the question of who does own the rain falling on your roof. If it belongs to the water company, can i issue them with a cease and desist order? If it was not for their rain, I could save money by building a house without a roof, thus they impose a cost on me. If it is not yet their water, when does it become their water? When it touches the ground, my ground? Perhaps I do not want their water on my ground and can charge them rent.

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Colorado Water Law requires that precipitation fall to the ground, run off and into the river of the watershed where it fell. Because rights to water are legally allocated in this state, an individual may not capture and use water to which he/she does not have a right.

Which immediately raise the question of who does own the rain falling on your roof. If it belongs to the water company, can i issue them with a cease and desist order? If it was not for their rain, I could save money by building a house without a roof, thus they impose a cost on me. If it is not yet their water, when does it become their water? When it touches the ground, my ground? Perhaps I do not want their water on my ground and can charge them rent.

You'd never win, but it raises some interesting points. If you walk in the rain, are you technically committing theft if you stick your tongue out and catch a raindrop?

On a (slightly) saner note, as water rates have been sky-rocketing year after year, I've been wondering about rigging up a rain water capture system > filter > pumping into a separate storage tank for servicing WC's, maybe bath, washing machine etc. The water will still end up in the water PLC's system in the end, but would deprive them of some revenue if it caught on.

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And after water, the final asset class which is being funded by the climate change industry will be Air! ;)

You got to it first :)

The film "Total Recall" had it spot on.

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