According to The Aspen Times, state engineers in the Arkansas River Basin are beginning to crack down on more than 10,000 ponds without legal water rights, which they say are harming senior water rights holders. The Colorado Division of Water Resources rolled out a new pond-management plan last month. The plan is designed to help relieve pressure in the over-appropriated basin by reducing evaporative water loss and restoring water to senior rights holders. Because these undecreed ponds don’t have an official water right, they are taking water out of priority, which amounts to stealing water from senior users. In order to be allowed to keep water in a pond, pond owners must replace the water loss to the system, usually through what is known as an augmentation plan.
Read more on this story from The Aspen Times.