Have you licensed your groundwater yet?
As most of you likely already know, the BC Government brought into force theWater Sustainability Actin February 2016.Part of the new requirements include registeringgroundwaterto retain first-in-time first-in-right (FITFIR) access, as well as licensing and paying for groundwater use (current and future needs).Registration fees are waived if completedin the first year (ending February 28, 2017), but licensing fees forgroundwateruse still apply.
What is the difference between well registration and groundwater licensing?
Registering your well creates a record of your water use and helps to ensure that your use is considered by the decision makers dealing with other licence applications. Licensing clarifies how much water you can legally use and increases the security of your access to that water. Licensing establishes rights to groundwater based on the same priority scheme that currently exists for surface water, and will help to reduce conflicts between water users in times of scarcity.
Do I need to register my well if I have applied for a groundwater licence?
No, if you are applying for a groundwater licence you do not need to register your well. Your well will automatically be registered during the licensing process. How is this different from my current water licence? Many ranchers have existing surface water licences (for streams, lakes, rivers, etc.). However, it is a new requirement that people must also licence their use of water from groundwater sources (drilled wells, aquifers, artesian flow, etc.). Anyone using a groundwater source for anything other than domestic use must apply for a licence.
We have prepared some information (such as those questions above) for our members with Q&A about the groundwaterregistrationand licensing process, somehelpful tips about the minimum requirements for completing the licensing application, and collecting the appropriate documents before you start.Click link below.
Helpful Hints when Applying for an Existing Groundwater (well) Licence
If you are a BCCA member and haven't already, you will soon received the anove information in the mail.
If you have any questions on the licensing process, please contactFrontCounterBCtoll free at1.877.855.3222, or visit your local FrontCounter BC office.