Water Law

Tipton Hydro Bill

U.S. Rep. Scott Tipton (R-Cortez) recently introduced a bill aimed at streamlining the process to approve federal small conduit hydroelectricity projects.

October 24, 2011--Colorado River law: Time for change? (Pueblo Chieftain)

Two starkly different views of the ability of seven states to divide the waters of the Colorado River were given at Colorado College last week. Colorado Supreme Court Justice Gregory Hobbs marveled at how a river basin labeled by some early explorers as uninhabitable 150 years ago now supports 30 million people in seven states.

October 14, 2011--High court deciding if water well law is legal (Denver Post)

Justices sitting on the New Mexico State Supreme Court are deciding whether a decades-old state domestic water well law violates the state constitution. The Santa Fe New Mexican reports five justices heard oral arguments Thursday in two cases challenging the state statute. Their final decision has far-reaching consequences.

October 9, 2011--Tributary or not? Decoding confusing water rules (Durango Herald)

A gas producer doesn’t need a water right to withdraw the nontributary ground water beneath your property; a well permit works just fine. Is a producer taking your private property when it withdraws the nontributary ground water beneath your property without your consent?

September 11, 2011--CSU professors push gray-water recycling at Legislature (Durango Herald)

Households could save up to half their water if they could reuse “gray water” from shower and sink drains, two Colorado State University professors said last week. The duo convinced state legislators to at least consider changes in restrictive state laws governing gray water.

September 10, 2011--Did gas industry win water ruling? (Durango Herald)

A judge has upheld the state’s rules that exempt some gas and oil wells from stricter regulation of their water use, but the ruling contains one notable exception. It’s an exception that just happens to involve most of the gas wells being drilled in Southwest Colorado.

August 28, 2011--Reservoir to be drained to repay Kan. water debt (Durango Herald)

An eastern Colorado reservoir popular with boaters is nearing its end as the state looks to Bonny Reservoir to send about 4 billion gallons of water to Nebraska and Kansas under a 1942 agreement among the three states to share water.

July 27, 2011--Small streams may get greater protection (Durango Herald)

Fishing and environmental groups are hailing the Environmental Protection Agency's new move to enforce clean water laws in small mountain streams. Environment Colorado delivered more than 23,000 letters and postcards in support of the move to EPA regional chief Jim Martin on Tuesday, and Martin happily accepted them.

July 27, 2011--Appeals court's ruling on stormwater runoff provokes political backlash (New York Times)

A federal appeals court ruling that would require Clean Water Act permitting for stormwater runoff on logging roads has sparked a political backlash, leading to congressional action and possible Supreme Court intervention. The San Francisco-based 9th U.S.

Judge Rules in Favor of Landowners

According to a recent Durango Herald article, Judge Gregory Lyman tossed out several gas companies’ applications for water rights in a ruling that could strengthen the hands of landowners in negotiations with drillers. Judge Lyman’s ruling is the latest development in a long struggle concerning water rights and gas drilling that began in 2007.

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