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Getting Outside the Water Box: The Need for New Approaches to Water Planning and Policy

Patricia GoberDCDC founding director, Patricia Gober, writes in the January 15, 2013 editorial for the journal Water Resources Management, that North American water systems are inadequately prepared to deal with an uncertain future climate and other uncertainties relevant to long-term sustainability.

The water resources community has been slow to embrace new paradigms for long-term water planning and policy. Too much attention has been focused on reducing, clarifying, and representing climatic uncertainty and too little attention has been directed to building capacity to accommodate uncertainty and change.

Given the limited ability to forecast the future climate, emphasis must shift to the human actors and social dynamics of water systems, including planning processes, work practices, operational rules, public attitudes, and stakeholder engagement.

Continue reading the editorial at Water Resources Management.