Groundwater is but one component of the hydrological cycle. It interacts with and is dependent on how the other components of the hydrological cycle are managed. The rationale for sharing or allocating groundwater is guided by the principle of equitable and reasonable utilization. There is no universal theory of justice to which we can appeal, to help us operationalise this principle to the satisfaction of all water uses and users. Often the losers in allocation decisions are marginal communities or disempowered individuals or groups, and the natural environment. This results in the emergence of a variety of social and environmental injustices, especially if the burden falls continuously on the same group or ecosystem. Social - Environmental justice is a useful lens in the arsenal of researchers, policy makers and natural resource managers that can be used to highlight the importance of a systems approach when dealing with common pool resources such as groundwater.
|Title of host publication||Integrated Groundwater Management. Concepts, Approaches and Challenges|
|Editors||A J Jakeman, O Barreteau, R J Hunt, J-D Rinaudo, A Ross|
|Place of Publication||Online|
|Publication status||Published - 2016|