Fresh water is essential to both the ever-expanding human population and the ever-threatened natural landscapes that surround us. And yet, society seems to continually ignore the need for a common-sense approach to—and appreciation of—our freshwater resources and our consumption of this remarkable, life-giving substance that now exceeds its future availability.
This ground-breaking and approachable work, by two of Canada’s most authoritative experts on water issues, redefines our relationship with fresh water and outlines the steps we as a society will have to take if we wish to ensure the sustainability of our water supply for future generations.
About the authors
Robert William Sandford is the EPCOR Chair of the Canadian Partnership Initiative in support of the United Nations "Water for Life" Decade and also sits on the Advisory Committee for the prestigious Rosenberg International Forum on Water Policy. He is a director of the Western Watersheds Climate Research Collaborative, an associate of the Centre for Hydrology at the University of Saskatchewan and a fellow of the Biogeoscience Institute at the University of Calgary. As well, he sits on the advisory board of Living Lakes Canada and is co-chair of the Forum for Leadership on Water and a member of the Advisory Panel for the RBC Blue Water Project. In 2011 he was invited to be an advisor on water issues by the InterAction Council, a global public policy think tank composed of more than 20 former national leaders, including Jean Chrétien, Bill Clinton and Vicente Fox.
Robert is the author of some 20 books on the history, heritage and landscape of the Canadian Rockies, including Water, Weather and the Mountain West (RMB, 2007), The Weekender Effect: Hyperdevelopment in Mountain Towns (RMB, 2008), Restoring the Flow: Confronting the World's Water Woes (RMB, 2009), Ethical Water: Learning to Value What Matters Most (RMB, 2011), Cold Matters: The State and Fate of Canada’s Fresh Water (RMB, 2012), Saving Lake Winnipeg (RMB, 2013), Flood Forecast: Climate Risk and Resiliency in Canada (RMB, 2014), and Storm Warning: Water and Climate Security in a Changing World (RMB, 2015). He is also the co-author of The Columbia River Treaty: A Primer (RMB, 2015) and The Climate Nexus: Water, Food, Energy and Biodiversity (RMB, 2015). Robert lives in Canmore, Alberta.
Merrell-Ann S. Phare is a member of the Forum for Leadership on Water (FLOW), which published “Changing the Flow: A Blueprint for Federal Action on Freshwater.” She is also a legal advisor to the Assembly of First Nations regarding water matters. Merrell-Ann serves on numerous advisory committees and consultation bodies on behalf of the Centre for Indigenous Environmental Resources (CIER), including the Expert Advisory Committee to the National Round Table on Environment and Economy (NRTEE), the Regulatory Advisory Committee of the Canadian Environmental Assessment Agency and recently finished two three-year terms on the Joint Public Advisory Committee (JPAC) of the NAFTA Commission for Environmental Cooperation. She was a member of the 2005 Lake Winnipeg Implementation Committee and the 2003 Manitoba Task Force on Emissions Trading and the Manitoba Economy. She has been a member of Canada’s delegation to the United Nations’ Commission on Sustainable Development, and represented the Assembly of First Nations on Canada’s delegation to the first meeting of the parties to the Kyoto Protocol. She is also a member of RBC’s Blue Water Advisory Panel, which advises the Royal Bank on water matters and, in particular, distribution of its $50-million Blue Water Fund.
I am grateful that Sandford and Phare are fighting for a better Canada on our behalf. The very fact that Ethical Water takes a principled stance is downright refreshing. Reading it with an open mind will probably make you a better person, and there’s no higher test of the value of a book.—Kyrke Gaudreau, Alternatives Journal
Within the deep blue covers of Ethical Water flow a clear image of why the current Western World's view on how to manage water is profoundly unsustainable, all capped with a sensible, concise prescription for a vital solution.—Lynn Martel, Rocky Mountain Outlook
Ethical Water: Learning to Value What Matters MostCanadians assume that we will always have plentiful water. But the authors of Ethical Water explain that we need a new approach to water if we are to preserve our way of life. Well thought out and well documented, this text proposes a new Partnership Ethic that takes into account both people and nature, encompassing First Nations values, ecosystem requirements and future sustainability. The author argues that a market-driven approach will not achieve the long-term results needed; strong political leadership will be required at all levels. The Northwest Territories Water Strategy illustrates how this can be done as does the European Union Water Framework Directive. In Canada we are not yet in a crisis situation, but this book proposes that we need to act now.
Source: The Association of Book Publishers of BC. BC Books for BC Schools. 2012-2013.