Importance of Adhering to Water Laws and Regulations
Water law can get complicated, as it combines common law and statutory law, as well as overseeing the execution of regulations. The idea behind those laws is to address the rights to use water and prevent the pollution of water.
Water use laws come into effect right from the onset, with the rights of those who own property next to or encompassing surface water bodies. The law dictates terms so that they can use the water, without interfering with the rights of other property owners in the region. An example is preventing them from diverting the flow of a stream to suit only their needs when there are other settlements downstream. These laws also dictate the terms and regulations for the construction of wells, sinking of boreholes, treatment of water by suppliers, and such efforts to access water.
Water laws also cover the aspects of common law, such as trespass, nuisance, and negligence. There are statutes and regulations put in place to ensure that most malicious, harmful, wasteful, and negligent acts do not result in unnecessary loss of water, pollution, limiting access to certain populations, or exploitation of certain populations to access the water. As much as it is a natural resource, one company or person’s actions can make it difficult for others to use the water. A factory, for example, is not allowed to dump waste into the local river or lake when it happens to be the main source of drinking water for the town. Their activities, therefore, fall under the regulation of these laws.
When you set up industry in a given region, it is best to observe their regulations regarding water laws. Such a move ensures you have safe and responsible access to water sources, without breaking any laws or violating any regulations in the process. Being compliant with such laws is understandably challenging and tricky, which is why you need expert counsel.
You need to work with a water right lawyer to ensure that all your activities are in line with the laws. Confirm that you are dealing with the right experts, as water laws are only handled best by such professionals. The general counsel will not suffice in this case. Look for one who offers an extensive list of services based on those laws, such as water rights adjudications and litigation, decree interpretation and enforcement, applications and permits, severance and transfers, water banking, water supply acquisitions, due diligence review of water right and supplies, to name a few.
They need to serve a wide base of clientele, specifically those operating in your industry. It helps for them to be familiar with your operations, to adequately cover your needs. It goes without saying that they need to be experts in the local area regulations, as those directly affect your operations.
They need to be committed to protecting your rights and ensuring you have a good understanding of what you can do as regards to responsible access to water. They should simplify your understanding of those water laws, and see to it that you are fully aware of your rights.
You need to be keen on the relationship between your firm or property and its water supply. Responsible use of water sources is not only to prevent trouble with the law, but it also ensures a sustainable supply for generations to come.