RAPID/Roadmap/19 (3)

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Regulatory and Permitting Information Desktop Toolkit

Solar Water Access & Water Rights Overview (19)

Water access and water rights are predominantly governed by state law. A developer may require water for such uses as dust suppression for roads, construction activities, drilling operations, extraction of resources, plant cooling operations, etc.


Depending on the situation and demands of a project a developer may seek water from a lease-holder, a municipality, or a permanent water right. Water rights are typically divided into ground water rights and surface water rights.

In the western United States, surface water rights are most often governed by a system of prior appropriation, which allocates rights by priority based on the date of application to a beneficial use; first in time, first in right. While in the eastern United States, surface water rights are governed by a system of riparian rights, which allocates rights based on property ownership adjacent to a body of water.


Water Access & Water Rights Overview Process



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