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Economic Aspects of Water Policy

This article reports what I as an economist think I have learned from the experience of the western states in economizing on water, which may suggest what eastern researchers might learn by directing some of their efforts toward sifting and evaluating the western history. This is one area in which history flowed backwards: the western evolution anticipated that in the East by a hundred years. Learning from the West does not mean copying the West for the West made mistakes as well as scored successes. From the total experience I shall seek to distill what seem to me to be general economic truths bearing on water resources.

AJES 28(2):131-44, April 1969. Republished in Charles J. Meyers and Dan Tarlock (eds.), Water Resource Management: a Law School Case Book, Stanford Law School. Republished in part in Jesse Dukeminier and James Krier (eds.) Property. Boston: Little, Brown, 1981.

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