18 CFR § 801.3
Allocations, diversions, withdrawals and release
April 15, 2021

(a) The extremes in availability of water in the basin means that water will not always be available when and where it is needed. One of the responsibilities of the Commission is to act upon requests for allocations, withdrawals, or diversions of water for in-basin or out-of-basin use. Water emergencies may be expected to develop in portions of the basin due to drought conditions or other causes. The Commission will act promptly to effect alleviation of the condition to the extent posible.

(b) The Commission will require evidence that proposed interbasin transfers of water will not jeopardize, impair or limit the efficient development and management of the Susquehanna River Basin's water resources, or any aspects of these resources for in-basin use, or have a significant unfavorable impact on the resources of the basin and the receiving waters of the Chesapeake Bay.

(c) The Commission may, in making decisions on allocations, diversions, withdrawals, and releases, consider the following principles among others:

(1) That allocations, diversions, or withdrawals of water be based on the common law principles of riparian rights which entitles landholders in any watershed to draw upon the natural stream flow in reasonable amounts and be entitled to the stream flow not unreasonably diminished in quality or quantity by upstream use or diversion of water; and on the maintenance of the historic seasional variations of the flows into Chesapeake Bay.

(d) When the need arises for action on requests for allocations, diversions, or withdrawals of water from either surface or ground waters of the basin the Commission shall:

(1) Allocate waters of the basin to and among the signatory States to the Compact as the need appears, and impose related conditions, obligations, and release requirements.

(2) Determine if a proposed allocation, withdrawal or diversion is in conflict with or will significantly affect the comprehensive plan, and assure existing immediate and projected long term local and regional uses are protected.

(3) Impose conditions, obligations and release requirements for dams and/or diversion structures to protect prior local interests, downstream interests, and environmental quality.

(4) In the matter of drought, disasters or catastrophes, natural or manmade, which cause actual and immediate shortage of available and usable water supply, determine and delineate the area of shortage and by unanimous vote declare a state of water supply emergency therein, and impose direct controls on any and all allocations, diversions and uses of water to meet the emergency condition.

(5) In water emergencies coordinate the efforts of Federal, State, local, and other persons and entities in dealing with the emergency.

(6) Determine and delineate, after public hearing, areas within the basin wherein the demands upon supply made by water users have developed or threaten to develop to such a degree as to create a water shortage or impair or conflict with the comprehensive plan.

(7) When areas in need of protection from overdemand of safe yield of the supply have been delineated, declare such areas protected from further depletion, with the consent of the member or members from the affected State or States.

(8) Require that no person divert or withdraw from any protected area water for domestic, municipal, agricultural, or industrial uses in excess of such quantities as the Commission may prescribe by general regulation or pursuant to a permit granted heretofore under the laws of any of the signatory States.

Tried the LawStack mobile app?

Join thousands and try LawStack mobile for FREE today.

  • Carry the law offline, wherever you go.
  • Download CFR, USC, rules, and state law to your mobile device.