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Improving Groundwater Policy Using an Alternative Economic Policy Instrument in Ontario: Aligning Sustainability Governance with Corporate Groundwater Takings Practice

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posted on 2023-05-29, 15:57 authored by Taylor Garnet-Abrams

Groundwater is a finite and depletable natural resource. According to the Canadian government, groundwater is the primary source of water for washing and drinking for 28.5% of Ontarians. Over-pumping of groundwater affects its quality and negatively impacts ground and surface water ecosystems. Ontario’s Water Resources Act (1990) stipulates that corporations involved in water bottling apply for permits to pump groundwater if the firm intends to take more than 50,000 litres of water on any given day. The rate that water bottling companies pay for water prevents Ontario from recovering administrative regulatory costs and does not incentivize conservation or signal value for groundwater. This paper examines Ontario’s groundwater policies, agreements and policy instruments relating to water takings and investigates an Inverted Block Rate Structure (IBRS) as an alternative economic policy instrument. The findings suggest an IBRS can efficiently allocate greater controls over Ontario water resources, encourage conservation, thereby improving groundwater governance. 

History

Language

English

Degree

  • Master of Arts

Program

  • Public Policy and Administration

Granting Institution

Ryerson University

LAC Thesis Type

  • MRP

Thesis Advisor

Dr. Carolyn Johns

Year

2020

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    Public Policy and Administration (Theses)

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