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Property and the Law in Energy and Natural Resources$
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Aileen McHarg, Barry Barton, Adrian Bradbrook, and Lee Godden

Print publication date: 2010

Print ISBN-13: 9780199579853

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: May 2010

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199579853.001.0001

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Ownership Models for Water Services: Implications for Regulation

Ownership Models for Water Services: Implications for Regulation

(p.257) 14 Ownership Models for Water Services: Implications for Regulation
Property and the Law in Energy and Natural Resources

Sarah Hendry

Oxford University Press

This chapter is concerned with the provision of water services — drinking water and sanitation — the latter of which may or may not involve waterborne disposal through a sewerage system. It examines the different ownership models operating in England and Scotland, along with structures for their regulation and control. It also draws on examples from other jurisdictions, particularly South Africa and Australia. In both South Africa and Australia there is a mixture of public and private sector involvement; in both there is provision by local government, with consequences for ring-fenced funding, economic audit and business planning; in both there is already disaggregation of bulk and individual supply, and moves to commercialize or corporatize public supply. The chapter assesses the role of regulation and of governance, as well as structures of ownership, and draws conclusions as to the importance of ownership of this industry, compared to the role of effective regulation and good governance.

Keywords:   water services, water resources, property ownership, water policy

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