Sunday, 29 July 2012

Oregon criminalizes permaculture; claims state ownership over all rainwater - ponds and swales restricted - jail time for violators

There's nothing more refreshing than standing in a cool, summertime rain shower.  Or bathing in the warm sunlight on a crisp spring day.  Or inhaling the cool autumn air, fresh with the scent of turning leaves and pine needles. These things -- rainwater, sunlight, air -- have long been assumed to be not only free, but un-claimable. You can't claim to own the sunlight that falls on my front yard, for example. A corporation can't claim intellectual property ownership over the air that you breathe and demand you pay a royalty for inhaling.

But these days, Jackson County, Oregon says it owns YOUR rainwater, and the county has sentenced a man to 30 days in jail and fined him over $1500, for the supposed "crime" of collecting rainwater on his own property.

The man's name is Gary Harrington, and he owns over 170 acres of land in Jackson County. On that land, he has three ponds, and those ponds collect rainwater that falls on his land. Common sense would say Gary has every right to have ponds with water on his 170 acres of land, but common sense has been all but abandoned in the state of Oregon. (Read Further: Source)