An Understanding Of The Notion Of Water Rights

1024 Words Jun 4th, 2015 5 Pages
An understanding of the notion of “water rights” in the eastern part of the United States is supported by two key questions (a) What can I do? (b) What can someone else do?
Riparian ‘s have certain rights - (1) right to continued natural flow of water in largely same quality and quantity; (2) right to make “reasonable use” of water, subject to the equal rights of other riparian’s on the same water body. Thus, a possessory right subject to the usafructory rights of other riparian’s. This paper argues that while it might have been okay to have a general doctrine of "reasonableness", that this might be too broad given greater demands/uses in riparian states, plus changing climatic conditions.

The alteration of regional hydrology by climate change, might in turn result in resource degradation and the allocation of surface water availability amongst competing water users, which may gradually come into disagreement.

Legal Background:

Riparian law rights evolved substantially from common law principles, and it’s the law that governs both surface and groundwater’s withdrawal and use in the eastern United States. Unlike a cohesive statute based laws, common law is subject to modification as new cases are decided. While this right differs from state to state with shared fundamental principles, shades of nuances exist between the laws.

The doctrine was well articulated in Beacham v. Lake Zunich Property Owners Association, where the court stated that the owner of a portion of…

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