Energy, Environmental, and Natural Resource Systems Law Program
Reports & Publications

GROUNDWATER LAWS AND REGULATIONS: A PRELIMINARY SURVEY OF THIRTEEN U.S. STATES 2nd Edition

Project Directors and Editors:
Professor Gabriel Eckstein, Texas A&M University School of Law
Professor Amy Hardberger, St. Mary’s University School of Law

Authors: Alexander Bennett, Contessa Gay, Ashley Graves, Thomas Long, Erin Milliken, Margaret Reed, Laura Smith, Lauren Thomas


EENRSLP-Report-Cover-March-2020This report presents the results of an ongoing study investigating the state groundwater laws and regulations across the United States.  Professor Gabriel Eckstein at Texas A&M University School of Law and Professor Amy Hardberger at Saint Mary’s University Law School developed a matrix to ascertain chief components and characteristics of the groundwater legal regime of each state.  Student researchers then used the matrix to respond to a standardized set of questions about the groundwater laws and regulations of each state. The states included in this first report include: Alabama, Arkansas, Colorado, Florida, Illinois, Indiana, Louisiana, Missouri, Mississippi, Oregon, Tennessee, Texas, and Washington.

In August 2017, a preliminary version of this report was released to generate feedback about the methodology, accuracy of information, organization, and usefulness of the project and its findings.  Building on the numerous comments and suggestions received, this final version offers much more expanded and comprehensive surveys of the groundwater laws and regulations for the states contained in this volume.  Additional state survey are now being researched and assembled, and subsequent compilations will be released on this page as they are completed.

The objective of the project is develop substantial comparisons of groundwater governance principles, strategies, issues, and challenges across the United States.  Those comparisons will be undertaken once the individual surveys are finalized.  Collectively, the surveys and analyses should aid states and federal government to explore new mechanisms and approaches for the sound management of groundwater resources, as well as serve as a useful resources for property owners, water rights holders, water managers, the private sector, and the public in general.


The first edition of this compilation is available at here

US-groundwater-report-tmbAuthors of the first edition included: Rachael Louise Cain, Marcus Goll, Tyler Hood, Colton Lauer, Matthew McDonough, Brett Miller, Shea Pearson, Scott Rodriguez, Travis Riley