SEC. 51-3-1. Declaration of policy on conservation of water resources.
It is hereby declared that the general welfare of the people of the State of Mississippi requires that the water resources of the state be put to beneficial use to the fullest extent of which they are capable, that the waste or unreasonable use, or unreasonable method of use, of water be prevented, that the conservation of such water be exercised with the view to the reasonable and beneficial use thereof in the interest of the people, and that the public and private funds for the promotion and expansion of the beneficial use of water resources shall be invested to the end that the best interests and welfare of the people are served.
It is the policy of the Legislature that conjunctive use of groundwater and surface water shall be encouraged for the reasonable and beneficial use of all water resources of the state. The policies, regulations and public laws of the State of Mississippi shall be interpreted and administered so that, to the fullest extent possible, the ground and surface water resources within the state shall be integrated in their use, storage, allocation and management.
All water, whether occurring on the surface of the ground or underneath the surface of the ground, is hereby declared to be among the basic resources of this state to therefore belong to the people of this state and is subject to regulation in accordance with the provisions of this chapter. The control and development and use of water for all beneficial purposes shall be in the state, which, in the exercise of its police powers, shall take such measures to effectively and efficiently manage, protect and utilize the water resources of Mississippi.
SOURCES: Codes, 1942, Sec. 5956-01; Laws, 1956, ch. 167, 1; 1962, ch. 218; 1985, ch. 459, Sec. 1, eff from and after passage (approved April 1, 1985).