As the full effects of summer begin to take shape, the streams, lakes, vegetation and wildlife of Utah will become more parched. For several years now drought has plagued this state. There will be numerous cries from the state Natural Resource division and government leaders to conserve water. Two years ago, Governor Leavitt (now ex-governor) declared a drought emergency according to an article titled "Governor to declare drought emergency" Conditions have actually worsened since then. Web sites have emerged Division of Water Resources Governor's Water Conservation Team to help educate citizens of the state on water conservation.
Allow me to educate readers on the hypocrisy of the government of Utah to encourage water conservation.
The problem begins with the Utah Division of Water Rights and trickles downhill (pun intended) from there. Utah law reads, all waters in Utah are public property. Public property despite the fact that in order to own and use water, rights must be purchased and a title to those rights recorded with the recorders office. Further reading states, a water right is a right to the use of water based upon 1) quantity, 2) source 3) priority date, 4) nature of use, 5) point of diversion and 6) physically putting water to beneficial use. In other words the state reserves the right to take ownership away, unless as previously stated, one can prove physically putting water to beneficial use.
I own enough water rights to supply 128 homes a year with water. But I am literally forced to pour it on the ground to keep my investment or have it taken away without any compensation. Good economics (water rights have appreciated along with real estate in Utah) has forced myself and others to do the same thing, with hopes of capitalizing on our investment.
When you visit the conservation website, there’s a link to report water abuse take a minute to remind the state that forcing citizens to use water when they don’t need to is not conservation.
Should there come a requirement for citizens of the state to give up washing their cars and watering their lawns come by our place, and enjoy our sprinklers. There’s plenty of water to waste for everyone.