In the Pacific Northwest, and most of the western U.S., water supply for cities, agricultural irrigation, industrial uses, and ecological needs is outpaced by ever-increasing demands on water resources. Water in the western U.S. typically belongs to the public and use of water requires obtaining a state-issued permit or water right. Meeting future water needs requires detailed planning, a deep understanding of the regulatory framework, and knowledge about the complexities related to surface and groundwater flow systems.

Summit’s water right experts assist our clients with navigating these complex factors to plan for meeting future water demands through strategic management of existing water rights, procurement of new authorizations, or creative solutions for utilizing existing water sources (e.g., aquifer storage and recovery [ASR]). We have extensive technical expertise and experience with regulatory programs that apply to water resources issues throughout the Pacific Northwest.

Areas of expertise include:

  • Water supply master planning support
  • Water right transactions
    • New water use authorizations (e.g., water use permits, storage permits, limited water use licenses, etc.)
    • Modification of existing water rights (e.g., permit amendments, water right transfers, groundwater registration modifications, assignment requests, instream leases, etc.)
    • Extensions of time (e.g., permits or transfers)
    • Allocation of conserved water
    • Claims of beneficial use
  • Water right mapping
  • Audits of existing water rights and due diligence reviews in support of property acquisitions
  • Water right condition compliance
    • Groundwater monitoring plans
    • Static water level measurements
    • Special well construction standards
    • State agency reporting requirements
    • Fish screening
  • Fish persistence target flows
  • Water management and conservation plans
strategic water rights COBU

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