Water scarcity is probably one of the most salient problems in Spain. The combination of climate conditions, which are typical of the Mediterranean basin, together with the increase of rival uses of water during the last decades, have put water scarcity high on the political agenda. However, while there is a wide consensus on the need to tackle the water issue, the strategies to deal with it seem quite diverse, broadly divided between those in favour of a supply approach and those in favour of a demand one. While policies at the national level seem to favour the first of the two approaches, consisting of the construction of large hydraulic infrastructures to transfer water between river basins, there are a few experiences in which this traditional approach has been replaced by a new one in which the rationality of water use is a guiding principle. The two cases analysed in this chapter, the Matarraña and the Mula river basins, constitute two of these experiences. Departing from a common problem -- serious scarcity -- and following very different types of water regime changes, the outcome in both cases is an attempt to improve the conditions for sustainability. This chapter aims not only to tell these two stories but also to explore the factors accounting for regime change in both cases. The chapter is divided into four sections. The first one briefly describes the national regime context in which the two cases must be understood. The second and the third sections offer an analysis of the two cases, including both the story lines and the characterisation of regime change in each of them. The fourth section analyses regime changes at the two cases in comparison with national regime changes. The chapter ends with some concluding remarks.
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- Redistributing Water Uses and Living with Scarcity
- Springer Netherlands
- Chapter 6