A couple of years ago, articles with titles such as this one by Rohini Nilekani in Yale Global were fairly common: "Is Water the Next Oil?". Today, the pseudonymous author of the blog The Learning Diary of an Israeli Water Engineer suggests otherwise ("Worldwide water sector devalued"):
I continue thinking that the expansion of the water sector is an illusion, it is not happening and will never [...]. The water crisis is more a media event, or an eternal United Nations issue for travelling to exotic places, than a real investment opportunity. People who "bought" the concept of water as the golden investment opportunity - lost [their] money.
In previous correspondence with this water engineer/blogger, I had asked him what investment opportunities he saw in the sector. His response, in a nutshell, was that most countries that could afford water infrastructure already had it, and most of those that didn't, didn't have the money to pay for it.
The photo above accompanied the Yale Global article.