a “portfolio approach” that relies on multiple water sources

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The “portfolio approach” appears to be a financial phrase. Using your money to buy different sources of water if economically fitting. Just a guess here.


Fortunately, steps can be taken to avoid urban water crises. In general, a “portfolio approach” that relies on multiple water sources is probably most effective. Cape Town has already begun implementing a number of water-augmentation projects, including tapping groundwater and building water-recycling plants. Many other cities will need to repair existing water infrastructure to cut down on leakage.

-Scientific American

  • JulianStuart

    Senior Member
    English (UK then US)
    It means " a collection of sources" like a collection of papers, a phrase so used in the world of finance.

    1. the contents of such a case, esp. a collection of photographs, etc., that represents a person's work:[countable]The students submitted a portfolio of their drawings.
    2. Business the securities, etc., held by a private investor, financial institution, etc.:[countable]a portfolio of bonds.


    Senior Member
    English - U.S.
    It's the opposite of having "all your eggs in one basket".

    You buy a portfolio of stocks to avoid the risk of buying only one which later becomes worthless. With a portfolio, you still have the others if one goes bad.

    The idea with water is the same. Avoid depending on only one water source that later might go bad.
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