Finding a Water Ethic through Religion, Aesthetics, Conflicts & the Law


Water is important to humans for household uses, manufacturing, agriculture, ecological preservation, recreation, and many other interests. Legislators developing water policies often cannot reconcile conflicting water interests because they do not understand their regions’ water ethics. Ethics philosophers and legal analysts have performed extensive studies on environmental ethics and human values. These same experts, however, have neglected to separate water ethics from environmental ethics. In this article, I do not speculate on what the ideal water ethic should be. Instead, I use religion, aesthetics, water conflicts, and the law to exhibit that no single water ethic exists. Each continent, country, and region has its own water interests and water ethics. Governments and lobbyists should understand a region’s water ethic before writing policies or lobbying for policy changes. By understanding water ethics, these entities can more effectively allocate water resources.


Water Law

Date of this Version

June 2006