July 6, 2009

Out With The Old, In With The New

I am doing the happy dance in my chair at this very moment. Well, more like the happy rain dance! You see, for the first time in hundreds of years, it is now legal for some residents of Colorado to harvest the rain and snow that falls from the skies! Yes, boys and girls, LEGAL! What's that you say? Why was catching moisture from the skies illegal in the first place? That's actually a very long, very convoluted pile of poop that I don't quite understand so I cannot fully explain. In a nutshell, the state of Colorado proclaims that every drop of water that falls from the skies and runs through creeks and streams belongs to someone. Unless you are that someone who was granted water rights to your property, you are not allowed to use that water. A bit far-fetched, wouldn't you say? Coming from Louisiana, where rain is abundant and free for the catching, the whole thing really boggles my mind.

Thanks to the efforts of conservationists, coupled with the drought and diminishing ground water levels, lawmakers are starting to wake up. You might have noticed that I previously stated the new law will allow some residents to legally harvest rainwater. Apparently, it will now be legal for those folks with private wells to collect rainwater. No doubt folks who live smack dab in the city and use municipal water have been harvesting illegally for years and will continue to do so. But for those of with property in the country who have our own wells (that means US!), we can now set up our rain barrels in clear view for all the world to see. Makes you feel like dancing, doesn't it?

You can read a recent NY Times article that explains the whole thing better than I can here.

2 comments:

basicliving@backtobasicliving.com said...

This completely boggles my mind. Completely. Boggles. My. Mind. I haven't read that article yet, but I will shortly. I am fairly convinced I still won't understand the reasoning behind prohibiting it in the first place, though.

But I'm happy you may now legally capture the rain. And use rain barrels! Yay! I am so in love with my rain barrel - and my outside sink attached to the plumbing for it. Rain barrels rock!

Happy harvesting ;-)

Lilla said...

Penny, don't even try to understand it. The laws are quite complicated and very outdated, but there are probably some wacky laws on the books in every state...just not enforced.

Your rain barrel set-up is great. This month's Mother Earth News had an article with pictures about setting up an outdoor gardening station with prep and wash areas and I thought of you. I would like to have something like that one day at The Ranch!