Understanding Water-Use Regulations: Medical and Recreational Marijuana

Marijuana-related water use is subject to the same water-use regulations as any other irrigated crop. Under the Oregon Water Code of 1909, all water belongs to the public. With a few exceptions, cities, irrigators, businesses, and other water users must obtain a water right from the Water Resources Department to use water from any source – whether it is underground, or from lakes or streams. Generally speaking, landowners with water flowing past, through, or under their property do not automatically have the right to use that water without authorization from the Department.


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