DOE Policy on Collecting Rainwater
A public service announcement on the legalities of collecting rainwater from rooftops and use of the rainwater.
Setting the record straight on Ecology’s rainwater collection policy
OLYMPIA – Under Washington Department of Ecology (Ecology) policy, a water right isn’t required for the rooftop collection and use of rainwater.
Recent news stories in Central Washington have reported rumors that Ecology would seek to oversee or regulate rainwater collection in conjunction with a Kittitas County proposal to allow cisterns for domestic water supply in Upper Kittitas County. The rumors are unfounded, and in fact Ecology’s policy on rainwater collection has been in place since 2009.
In October 2009, then Ecology Director Jay Manning signed an interpretive statement that a water right is not required to capture rooftop rainwater and use it on-site so long as it doesn’t impair stream flows or existing water rights.
For more information:
To view the full policy and for guidance on rainwater collection in Washington state, go to: