Permit Requirements For Irrigators

Irrigation System
April 15, 2021


Lewis and Clark Natural Resources District (LCNRD) requires all high-capacity wells that pump more than 50 gpm (including stock and irrigation) to have an approved permit prior to drilling the well. LCNRD also requires a permit to expand irrigation to acres that have not been previously irrigated by ground water. LCNRD implemented these requirements to establish and maintain a reliable database of irrigated acres in the district and to ensure beneficial use of groundwater.


LCNRD Rules and Regulations for Groundwater Management allow producers to continue development and to expand their operation while staying in compliance. There have been 220 new well permits and just over 13,147 new irrigated acres approved by the LCNRD board of directors since initial adoption of the rules and regulations in 2014. 


Is your well properly registered? All wells not properly registered at the Nebraska Dept of Natural Resources (NDNR) are considered illegal wells. An unregistered or illegal well can cause spacing violations in relationship to other wells.  State regulations require new wells be located at least 600 feet from existing or permitted irrigation wells and 1,000 feet from industrial or public supply wells. LCNRD regulations require 300 foot spacing from domestic and stock wells. A well is considered inactive if pump information is not provided. If you purchase property with a well on it, it is recommended you update well owner information with NDNR and make sure the well is registered properly. 


To apply for a well permit or irrigated acre expansion permit or to check on a well registration contact LCNRD at 402-254-6758.


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