Given the impasse in climate politics, maybe it is time to reframe the problem and start again. One way of doing this is to focus on how global warming is tied into our habitual abuse of water. In fact, it can be argued that climate change will never be rolled back unless the crucial link between local and global water cycles is restored.
People all over the world are coming to an ecocentric awareness of the integral dynamics of water—in human bodies, in plants, in soils, and as an agent of Earth cooling. Grassroots movements are demanding re-municipalisation, although a socialist solution of public ownership is only half the story, because it remains anthropocentric. Alternative philosophies of water are coming from Indigenous peoples, ecological feminists, even unconventional lawyers and engineers. These visions replace the mindset of water extractivism with water commoning. The Water Paradigm overtakes both corporate water marketing and state-managed technological fixes. Key priorities are self-reliance with water for food sovereignty and re-skilling with hands-on care of bioregional catchments.
Here is a synergistic politics that can be at once post-patriarchal, post-capitalist, postcolonial and ecocentric. How so? A good part of the answer lies in uncovering a set of premises that are basic to all four of these movement struggles.