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7 Ariz. J. Envtl. L. & Pol'y 1 (2016-2017)

handle is hein.journals/arijel7 and id is 1 raw text is: 



                                   Meg  Osswald*


              In United States v. New Mexico,  the Supreme Court relied on the
       Organic  Act to limit the federally reserved water rights attached to the
       Gila National Forest  Reservation in New  Mexico.   The Supreme  Court
       construed the Organic Act narrowly, holding that the Act reserved water
       for timber  and watershed  protection purposes  only.  Looking   at the
       Organic  Act  alone  set a  detrimental precedent for  future federally
       reserved water  rights determinations; prompting  future courts to use
       uniform  timber and watershed purposes  to determine the implied water
       rights attached to all national forest reservations.
              This Article challenges the Court's reliance on the Organic Act
       and  argues in favor  of a place-specific analysis to determine implied
       federally reserved water  rights that are  attached  to national forest
       reservations. Specifically, this Article argues that courts should look to
       the place-specific documentation and conditions surrounding each parcel
       of land in addition to acts of Congress with nationwide  scope like the
       Organic  Act.  First, courts should look to the place and time specific
       dedicating instrument used to create the federal land reservation at issue.
       Second,  because each  parcel's dedicating instrument may  not provide
       sufficient indicia of intent, where necessary, courts should look outside the
       instrument used  to make  the reservation to place-specific physical and
       historical circumstances surrounding the reservation. The value that each
       federal land reservation provides has much to do with the unique features
       provided by each unique location, and should be treated accordingly when
       determining federally reserved water rights.

*Meg Osswald is a 2016 graduate of the University of Utah's S.J. Quinney College of Law. She would like
to thank Dean Robert Adler and Professor John Ruple for their help conceptualizing the Article. She would
also like to thank Utah Law's Wallace Stegner Center for Land, Resources, and the Environment for being
an incredible resource for her environmental and natural resource law pursuits during law school and still

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