The Queensland and Victorian floods have highlighted what a powerful and unpredictable force water is. We need it to sustain life but ironically it also destroys life and property. How should we manage such a fugitive resource? Are the laws and systems which govern water sharing in times of water scarcity (drought) equally appropriate in times of over-abundance? The present law is market-based but how secure are the entitlements that people trade and does trading serve environmental objectives, economic efficiencies and social needs very well? Such questions are/should be important for legal practitioners representing irrigators, mining interests and or/environmental groups, for example. As debate about the Murray Darling Basin Guide demonstrated, these are 'hot issues'.