A study of water as a commodity. Water is becoming more scarce and costly in relation to other resources; consequently, problems of the efficient allocation of present water supplies and the development of new ones are becoming more important to regional and national welfare and growth. These problems are examined in the light of two major case studies: the New York City "water crisis" and the proposals for supplying water to Southern California. It is suggested that the correct application of economic principles to the distribution of present water supplies, especially pricing in proper relation to cost, will so extend these supplies through the reduction of waste that many of the grandiose schemes for increasing supplies can be put off for the future.
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