With the gravity of describing a state secret, the counter clerk at Carl’s Pharmacy on Main Street in Aspen leaned over and whispered to the customer who was buying a bottle of water. “You know, water is the next oil,” she said. The irony wasn’t lost on the customer, a Chevron senior executive, who described his experience to me. (He’s here as a sponsor of the energy series at the Aspen Ideas Festival.) Considering the obvious and not-so-obvious connections between water and energy, the clerk was right on the money, not to mention that the bottle of Fiji water cost $2.45.
J. Carl Ganter is co-founder and director of Circle of Blue, the internationally recognized center for original frontline reporting, research, and analysis on resource issues with a focus on the intersection between water, food, and energy.