Companies proclaim water the next oil in a rush to turn resources into profit

“Is now the time to buy water?” enquired the email that showed up in my inbox earlier this week.

Its authors weren’t worrying about my dehydration levels. Rather, they were urging me to think of water in quite a new way: as a commodity to invest in.

Making money from water? Is this what Wall Street wants next?

After spending nearly 30 years of my life writing about business and finance, including several years dedicated to the commodities market, the idea of treating water as a pure commodity – something to bought and sold on the open market by those in quest of a profit rather than trying to deliver it to their fellow citizens as a public service – made me pause.

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