Short answer: YES.
Long answer: Depends on what state you live, and depends on the outcome of new bills coming through the U.S. Congress, as they seem to making up new and stupid ones every day….
From what I have ascertained so far, it is illegal to collect rainwater in the following states:
- Washington State
- New Mexico
- Colorado– although I JUST saw a news story published this week that says this has changed. BUT it appears that city dwellers who rely on municipal water cannot collect rainwater.
I also heard that in 1998 the UN past a resolution that all water on the planet is to be commercial, to be bought or sold like, you know, an XBox or something. GRRR. Now I have not confirmed this, but if anyone has any input, feel free to leave a comment and I’ll check it out. Also, there was a “water war” in Bolivia after the country privatized their water resources, and then a company from the U.S. (Bechtel) won a contract for the resources. Immediately, the company had the collection of rainwater outlawed because they wanted a complete monopoly on the resource. People colecting rainwater cut in to their profits.
Now, some of the water laws, especially for the western states, go way back– back to when the area was owned by Spain. Water is a precious resource over there. BUT, this law is being stretched. The laws state that you can’t divert streams or suck lakes dry for your own use. Sure, I understand that– evil people were crooks and stole the water resources. Bad. OK. But some states are suddenly interpreting this to mean that people can’t collect rain in rain barrels?! That’s dumb. The government does NOT own the rain. It’s ridiculous for the government to PRESUME to be able to CONTROL the rain and it’s diversions, as well. If those old water laws are now being interpreted so as to place more restrictions and heavier burdens on citizens, and line the pockets of Big Business and their Government Buddies, that’s tyranny. That’s all there is to it.
You know, we Americans ARE the government. We abide by the Constitution and the Bill of Rights. Dare I say that we do not have to obey de facto laws and we have the right to redress the government for grievances. These things are really going waaaay too far in this country.