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date: 06 July 2020

Abstract and Keywords

This article explores the converging issues of water, crime and security. It begins with an overview of definitions central to the topic and a description of the development of “environmental security” as encompassing energy security, food security, and water security. It then describes “water security”—and its antipode, “water scarcity”—in both historical and contemporary contexts (with a specific focus on the United States) are described. Next, this article considers four linkages between water, scarcity, security, and crime: (a) pollution and violations of laws pertaining to water quality, (b) violations of laws as aresult ofwater scarcity, (c) migration and crime, and (d) water security and terrorism. This article offers a critical reading of “security” and situates securitizing discourses and movements relating to the environment in a political context. It concludes with some thoughts on the potential of future interdisciplinary research and the role of the nation-state in ensuring equitable access to useable water.

Keywords: crime, pollution, security, water, water scarcity, water security

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