Collecting rainwater considered illegal in Utah and other states

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An obscure piece of information regarding rainwater collection is making the rounds online, continues to anger many across the United States.

A blog posting on reports that many Western U.S. states, including Utah, have long outlawed individuals from collecting rainwater on their own properties. This is because, according to officials, “that rain belongs to someone else.”

Earlier this year, blogger Mike Adams wrote that there are laws restricting property owners from “diverting” water that falls on their own homes and land. Many owners have reportedly been fined in many states. But Adams writes that only recently, as droughts and renewed interest in water conservation methods have become more common, have individuals and business owners started butting heads with law enforcement over the practice of collecting rainwater for personal use.

Adams points viewers to a YouTube video, highlighting the story of Salt Lake City business owner, Mark Miller. He is the owner of Mark Miller Toyota.

Adams writes: “After constructing a large rainwater collection system at his new dealership to use for washing new cars, Miller found out that the project was actually an ‘unlawful diversion of rainwater.’ Even though it makes logical conservation sense to collect rainwater for this type of use since rain is scarce in Utah, it’s still considered a violation of water rights which apparently belong exclusively to Utah’s various government bodies.”

“Utah’s the second driest state in the nation. Our laws probably ought to catch up with that,” explained Miller in response to the state’s rainwater collection ban.

Adams reports that Salt Lake City officials worked out a compromise with Miller and are now permitting him to use “their” rainwater. But he goes on to argue that the fact that individuals like Miller don’t actually own the rainwater that falls on their property is a true indicator of what little freedom we actually have here in the U.S.

And apparently Utah isn’t the only state with rainwater collection bans. Colorado and Washington also have rainwater restrictions.

What do you think of these rules?

3 thoughts on “Collecting rainwater considered illegal in Utah and other states”

  1. Utah has lost its mind, collecting rainwater illegal. I will catch as much rainwater as I damn well please. And no city official is going to tell me otherwise!

  2. I’ll feel it’s just another example of government overreach. If rain falls on your property, it’s a God-given resource for you to use. Whether that be washing your car, watering your plants or washing your clothes it’s none of the government’s business what you do with rainwater that you collect.


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