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Bank on Controversy: New Bills Introduced To Commodify Water


This week lawmakers introduced the long-awaited “Water Banking” and “Conservation” bills, AB 354 and AB 356 (respectively).

These are GBWN’s top priorities for this session. We are still reviewing the bills. But, at first glance, there’s a lot to be worried about.

Do not be fooled by the warm and fuzzy bill titles. These bills move us closer to the commoditization of our most precious resource by stripping away beneficial use requirements, constraining public participation, fast-tracking interbasin transfers, limiting access to the courts, legitimizing speculation, and more  – all of which will transmogrify our water into an asset/security/fungible currency for profit.

What’s more: Entities can already create water banks in Nevada. A deal for one was just approved last week. These bills are about something much more.

These are bills for Wall Street — not Main Street. 

If these were bills for conservation, we’d see protections for the general welfare of the people and the resource. All we can see here are blank checks to re-write the rules of water management and water use in the state.

We will provide more analysis soon.

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