Storage of water
(1)Intentionally left blank —Ed.
(a)The right to store water of a natural stream for later application to beneficial use is recognized as a right of appropriation in order of priority under the Colorado constitution. No water storage facility may be operated in such a manner as to cause material injury to the senior appropriative rights of others. Acquisition of those interests in real property reasonably necessary for the construction, maintenance, or operation of any water storage reservoir, together with inlet, outlet, or spillway structures or other facilities necessary to make such reservoir effective to accomplish the beneficial use or uses of water stored or to be stored therein, may be secured under the laws of eminent domain.
(b)State agencies shall, to the maximum extent practicable, cooperate with persons desiring to acquire real property for water storage structures.
(2)Underground aquifers are not reservoirs within the meaning of this section except to the extent such aquifers are filled by other than natural means with water to which the person filling such aquifer has a conditional or decreed right.
(3)Intentionally left blank —Ed.
(a)Water attributable to a water right for which a previous change of water right has been judicially approved, that has been decreed for storage, and for which the historical consumptive use was previously quantified may be stored in any reservoir that is located on the same ditch or diversion system, including a nontributary aquifer if the requirements of subsection (2) of this section are complied with, as an alternate place of storage if:
(I)The water that is to be stored at the alternate place of storage is diverted from a point of diversion that has already been decreed for that water right;
(II)The owner or operator of the storage water right gives previous notice to the division engineer that identifies the water right, alternate place of storage, decreed point of diversion, and how the storage of the water in the alternate place of storage will be accounted for;
(III)Transit and ditch losses, if applicable, are assessed against the water right from the decreed point of diversion to the alternate place of storage; and
(IV)The division engineer has approved the accounting for the storage of the water in the alternate place of storage.
(b)A person who is entitled to claim injury to a water right has the right to a de novo hearing before the water court to argue that an alternate place of storage injures the person’s water right.
(c)Nothing in this subsection (3) allows the storage of water in an alternate place of storage if that water was imported from another water division.
(d)Other than the place of storage, all of the terms and conditions of the previous change of water right decree continue to apply to the water right.
Section 37-87-101 — Storage of water,
https://leg.colorado.gov/sites/default/files/images/olls/crs2023-title-37.pdf (accessed Oct. 20, 2023).