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Collecting rainwater

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Re: Collecting rainwater

Post  camprn on 7/15/2013, 8:55 pm

http://beforeitsnews.com/conspiracy-theories/2013/04/collecting-rainwater-now-illegal-in-many-states-in-usa-2450024.html

Rooster, can you collect rainwater now?

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Re: Collecting rainwater

Post  RoOsTeR on 7/15/2013, 9:02 pm

No we can't camp. Collecting rain water here in Colorado is still illegal for the most part. It's probably even more scrutinized with our ongoing drought.

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Re: Collecting rainwater

Post  donnainzone5 on 7/15/2013, 9:07 pm

In my own situation, I see no harm in using roof runoff from rain and snow melt. If not used, it would just permeate the ground and disappear. Of course, the Government would probably prefer that I capture and surrender it to them.


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Re: Collecting rainwater

Post  camprn on 7/15/2013, 9:12 pm

donnainzone10 wrote:In my own situation, I see no harm in using roof runoff from rain and snow melt.  If not used, it would just permeate the ground and disappear.  Of course, the Government would probably prefer that I capture and surrender it to them.  

Donna what are the water collection rules and laws for your area? Are you collecting rainwater now? Where is the majority of your water sourced from?
Rainwater is the recharge mechanism for aquifers, so water doesn't just disappear.

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Re: Collecting rainwater

Post  camprn on 7/15/2013, 9:32 pm

This was the link I meant to post earlier.
http://www.ncsl.org/issues-research/env-res/rainwater-harvesting.aspx

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Re: Collecting rainwater

Post  donnainzone5 on 7/15/2013, 11:10 pm

Camp,

I briefly skimmed the Oregon section of the link you posted, and it appears that my "harvesting" rainwater and snowmelt from my roof is legal.  In addition, rain barrels are for sale almost everywhere.


Last edited by donnainzone10 on 7/15/2013, 11:31 pm; edited 1 time in total (Reason for editing : typo)

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Re: Collecting rainwater

Post  landarch on 7/15/2013, 11:24 pm

I lived in Colorado for about 7 years and became familiar with aspects of water law.  When land is subdivided into 35 acre lots by land survey plat, each lot was entitled to drill three wells...this may have stemmed from the need to have water for a house, barn, and crops.  Later, if desired, if the 35 acred lot is furrther divided, you would end up with three subsequent lots, 10 ac minim, each with a right to each of the three wells.

As a landowner, one didn't necessarily own any water that fell on your land or roof...someone else owns that water.  It would be illegal to pump water from a pond, dam a creek, collect roof water in cisterns, etc.  Big players in water rights were agricultural ditch companies and the Denver Water Board.

In the last decade or so, Kansas sued Colorado and won a battle over the amount of water flowing across the state line in the Arkansas River.

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Re: Collecting rainwater

Post  jazzycat on 7/16/2013, 12:17 am

Personally, I think it's ridiculous and offensive that the government can *claim* ownership of rain that falls from the sky and lands on your property.  They end up selling a lot of that water to private industry anyway, which in turn, bottles it and sells it back to us for a 6000% markup.  Sometimes that water is shipped thousands of miles away, so if they're really worried about aquifers, why are they allowing that?

And in America, especially in certain areas, the amount of water that's used on lawns is more than many countries use for drinking water - collectively - so again, it's ridiculous that the government could claim ownership of the rain.  If they're so concerned, why aren't they limiting water use for lawns?  

We're extremely wasteful in this country, and collecting rainwater for personal use is certainly more sustainable than the way we're doing things now.  Just my 2 cents.

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Re: Collecting rainwater

Post  landarch on 7/16/2013, 12:38 am

it's not necessarily the government that owns surface water rights in several states...private individuals actually purchase water rights like a commodity, or the surface water rights came with original land entitlements.

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Re: Collecting rainwater

Post  camprn on 7/16/2013, 7:01 am

I apologize to the members of the forum for posting the first link yesterday. It is from a blog written from a paranoid mind fixated on conspiracy theory, is clearly large on vitriolic hyperbole and very short on facts and history.

I posted a second link, about water collection rules of the states for water harvesting. That was the link I meant to post originally.

Again, my apologies. Embarassed

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Re: Collecting rainwater

Post  RoOsTeR on 7/16/2013, 7:58 am

From a homeowner and landowner standpoint, living in Colorado Very Happy  here is the AVERAGE precipitation details for the area I live in:





Legal or not, it's not like moisture is dumping from the skies above in my area. I do know folks who collect rain water...in barrels. More times than not those barrels are dry. I've never really thought it worth my time or effort.

Landarch, in years past I worked several jobs under Denver Water. Great folks to work for, and I am thankful for the experiences I encountered working for them. I got to see and do things that most folks will never see, or know about. I also made great money Very Happy 
I did some work before and after 9/11. Those experiences were totally different.
One of the last projects I was on was a hydroelectric plant. It was awesome!






Also, there are certain concessions made for those with wells and collecting rain water.

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Re: Collecting rainwater

Post  Turan on 7/16/2013, 12:31 pm

We the people are the government and a great experience in that is dealing with water rights.  It is an interesting experience getting together with all other users of a ditch to talk about how to divide up the water expected for the coming summer.  It gets more difficult when you have ranches and dairies that depend on that water for their crops as well as homeowners on subdivided ranch land trying to divide that now long gone ranch's water rights.  It helps to bring a plate of cookies.

We are similarly arid as ROoster and extremely dependent on snow/rain fall up stream of us.  One reason we irrigate early in the spring is to pull water off the high rivers (thus lessening flooding in St Louis) and have that water cycle back through the aquifer to then be available to water our down stream neighbors fields in August.  In general this is the attitude towards rainwater collecting here, you are just slowing its movement down stream.  It once was how most houses got their own water, a cistern in the basement floor attached to the roof gutters.  The extension service has updated plans for home use rainwater systems.

People here still remember the Homesteader days from stories of their grandparents.  Stories of people fighting with shovels on irrigation ditches.  Stories of the new guy moving into the ranch upstream and using all the water driving his down stream neighbors out.  And in some cases ending up swing from a tree.  I won't say the system we have worked out is always smooth or fair but at least the stories of shovel murders is in the past tense.

We have not had yet the suburban sprawl pressure that I understand is the background behind Colorado's laws on rain water collecting.

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Re: Collecting rainwater

Post  camprn on 7/16/2013, 2:12 pm

Turan, thank you for your thoughtful, knowledgeable reply. I hope it rains on your parade soon! Wink 

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Re: Collecting rainwater

Post  No_Such_Reality on 7/16/2013, 4:49 pm

@Turan wrote:
We have not had yet the suburban sprawl pressure that I understand is the background behind Colorado's laws on rain water collecting.

Great post Turan, the only item I'd note is that the laws actually are almost a hundred years old or older. It really goes back to the water wars and as noted the upstream guy literally strangling his downstream neighbors.

Water is going to become a bigger fight issue going forward particularly in the US West.

And while the water rights seem strange, never, ever find any minerals of value on your land. Someone else owns them and has right of way to strip the land to get them.

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States and rainwater harvesting

Post  walshevak on 6/14/2014, 8:15 pm

I just saw this and though I'd put it up in case anybody is interested in what the various states are doing about rainwater harvesting.

http://www.ncsl.org/research/environment-and-natural-resources/rainwater-harvesting.aspx

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Re: Collecting rainwater

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