Environment & Energy Report

Corps of Engineers Rule May Reduce Water Disputes, Per Adviser

Dec. 16, 2016, 10:07 PM

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers wants to avert some conflicts over water by clarifying its authority to allow access to water in reservoirs it manages.

In a proposed rule published Dec. 16, the Corps said it would provide some basic definitions and standardized approaches to determining what “surplus water” is available for use, defining what uses are appropriate, avoiding adverse impacts on existing uses and determining how to set “reasonable” fees.

Inconsistencies in the regulations are “windows for litigation,” said Steve Stockton, senior adviser to Dawson & Associates Inc. in Washington, D.C., a consulting and environmental permitting...

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