CHAPTER 1

THE INTERNATIONAL CONTEXT: THE WATER CRISIS AND DEBATES ABOUT WATER POLICY

In the international context, the Chilean model of water management represents one response to what is increasingly recognized as a global “water crisis.” This crisis has been caused by the confluence of several international trends in water use and water management—trends that are remarkably common and widespread throughout the world despite obvious differences in social, economic, and geographic conditions.

The core trend is the ever-growing demand for water for an increasing range of social, economic, and environmental purposes. These growing and multiplying demands are driven by long-term forces of population and economic growth. Continually increasing demands ...

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