Insanity reigns in Melbourne as the drought continues and we move to Stage 3 water restrictions. What these restrictions do is dictate how we use water. The most imposing is that we can only water our gardens on two days a week (for us, as an even numbered household that means Tuesday and Saturday). But not just any watering just watering with a hose. And not just any hose but a hose with a trigger attachment. And not just any time that day but between 6am and 8am and between 8pm and 10pm.
So this morning I was up at 6am and out watering plants individually for an hour. And all I could think of was how can we be putting up with this imposition by a government that does not even have the decency to charge us at least the full marginal cost of our water use. You see, water use is supplied at a price clearly below costs. Hence, to combat over-use, draconian policies are enforced.
Now I would be remiss if I did not acknowledge that all this has got us thinking about water conversation. We have contacted people of about various forms of recycling but I suspect the demand for those services are also outstripping supply. So I cannot imagine this happening soon.
What will happen to us when school starts and time pressures prevent all this manual watering? It would be so much better if we could just choose between paying more for water and having a living garden altogether.
And before you object as to whether this is simply because we can pay, this will impact on others too. What is a religious Jewish family supposed to do if they live in an even numbered house and restricted to watering on Saturday’s? What is an elderly person with arthritic pain supposed to do?
Why not do the alternative and tax households for the cost of watering and pour the resulting revenues into forms of water conservation that will be more sustainable? It is going to be far more sustainable, politically and economically, than the current state of affairs. For me, I want to contact a concreter and pave the lot. Won’t that be good for the environment?