R653-5. Cloud Seeding  

R653-5-1. Definitions
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Terms used in this rule are defined as follows:

(1) "Act" or "Cloud Seeding Act" means the 1973 CLOUD SEEDING TO INCREASE PRECIPITATION ACT, Title 73, Chapter 15.

(2) "Cloud Seeding" or "Weather Modification" means all acts undertaken to artificially distribute or create nuclei in cloud masses for the purposes of altering precipitation, cloud forms, or other meteorological parameters.

(3) "Cloud Seeding Project" means a planned project to evaluate meteorological conditions, perform cloud seeding, and evaluate results.

(4) "Board" means the Utah Board of Water Resources, which is the policy making body for the Utah Division of Water Resources.

(5) "Director" means the Director of the Utah Division of Water Resources.

(6) "Division" means the Director and staff of the Utah Division of Water Resources.

(7) "License" means a certificate issued by the Utah Division of Water Resources certifying that the holder has met the minimum requirements in cloud seeding technology set forth by the State of Utah, and is qualified to apply for a permit for a cloud seeding project.

(8) "Licensed Contractor" means a person or organization duly licensed for cloud seeding activities in the State of Utah.

(9) "Permit" means a certification of project approval to conduct a specific cloud seeding project within the State under the conditions and within the limitations required and established under the provision of these Rules.

(10) "Sponsor" means the responsible individual or organization that enters into an agreement with a licensed contractor to implement a cloud seeding project.

R653-5-2. General Provisions
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(1) Authority: The State of Utah, through the Division, is the only entity, private or public, that may authorize, sponsor, or develop cloud seeding research, evaluation, or implementation projects to alter precipitation, cloud forms, or meteorological parameters within the State of Utah.

(2) Ownership of Water: All water derived as a result of cloud seeding shall be considered as a part of Utah's basic water supply the same as all natural precipitation water supplies have been heretofore, and all statutory provisions that apply to water from natural precipitation shall also apply to water derived from cloud seeding.

(3) Notice to State Engineer: The Director shall, by written communication, notify the Director of the Utah Division of Water Rights of cloud seeding permits within 45 days of issuance.

(4) Consultation and Assistance: The Division may contract with the Utah Water Research Laboratory, or any other individual or organization, for consultation or assistance in developing cloud seeding projects or in furthering necessary research of cloud seeding or other factors that may be affected by cloud seeding activities.

(5) State and County Cooperation: The Division shall encourage, cooperate, and work with individual counties, multi-county districts for planning and development, and groups of counties in the development of cloud seeding projects and issuance of permits.

(6) Statewide or Area-wide Cloud Seeding Project: The Division reserves the right to develop statewide or area-wide cloud seeding programs where it may contract directly with licensed contractors to increase precipitation. The Division may also work with individual counties, multi-county districts for planning and development, organizations or groups of counties, or private organizations, to develop Statewide or area-wide cloud seeding projects.

(7) Liability:

(a) Trespass - The mere dissemination of materials and substances into the atmosphere or causing precipitation pursuant to an authorized cloud seeding project, shall not give rise to any presumption that use of the atmosphere or lands constitutes trespass or involves an actionable or enjoinable public or private nuisance.

(b) Immunity - Nothing in these Rules shall be construed to impose or accept any liability or responsibility on the part of the State of Utah or any of its agencies, or any State officials or State employees or cloud seeding authorities, for any weather modification activities of any person or licensed contractor as defined in these Rules as provided in Title 63, Chapter 30.

(8) Suspension and Waiver of Rules - The Division may suspend or waive any provision of this rule on a case-by-case basis and by a writen memo signed by the Director. A suspension or waiver may be granted, in whole or in part, upon a showing of good cause relating to conditions of compliance or application procedures; or when, in the discretion of the Director the particular facts or circumstances render suspension or waiver appropriate.

R653-5-3. Utah Board of Water Resources
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(1) Review of License and Permit: The Board may review applications for Licenses and Permits and submit recommendations to the Director for his consideration for action on the applications.

(2) Policy Recommendations: The Board may advise and make recommendations concerning legislation, policies, administration, research, and other matters related to cloud seeding and weather modification activities to the Director and technical staff of the Division.

R653-5-4. Weather Modification Advisory Committee
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(1) Creation of Weather Modification Advisory Committee: An advisory committee may be created by the Director. Members of this committee shall be appointed by the Director, and serve for a period of time as determined by the Director.

(2) Duties of Weather Modification Advisory Committee:

(a) Advise the Director and technical staff of the Division on applications for licenses and permits; and

(b) Advise and make recommendations concerning legislation, policies, administration, research, and other matters related to cloud seeding and weather modification activities to the Director and technical staff of the Division.

R653-5-5. License and Permit Required
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(1) License and Permit Required: It is unlawful for any person or organization, not specifically exempted by laws and this rule, to act or perform services as a weather modifier, without obtaining a license and permit as provided for in the Cloud Seeding Act and this rule.

(2) To Whom License May Be Issued: Licenses to engage in activities for weather modification and control shall be issued to applicants who meet the requirements set out in the Act and Section R653-5-6. If the applicant is an organization, these requirements shall be met by the individual or individuals who are to be in control and in charge of the applicant's weather modification operations.

(3) To Whom Permit May be Issued: A permit may be issued to a licensed contractor as prescribed in Section R653-5-7.

(4) License and Permit Not Required: Individuals and organizations engaging in the following activities are exempt from the license and permit requirements of this rule:

(a) Research performed entirely within laboratory facilities;

(b) Cloud Seeding activities for the suppression of fog;

(c) Fire fighting activities where water or chemical preparations are applied directly to fires, without intent to modify the weather;

(d) Frost and fog protective measures provided through the application of water or heat by orchard heater, or similar devices, or by mixing of the lower layers of the atmosphere by helicopters or other type of aircraft where no chemicals are dispensed into the atmosphere, other than normal combustion by-products and engine exhaust; and

(e) Inadvertent weather modification, namely emissions from industrial stacks.

(5) Effective Period of License: Each license shall be issued for a period of one year. A licensee may renew an expired license in the manner prescribed by this rule.

(6) Effective Period of Permit: Each permit shall be issued for a period as required by a proposed cloud seeding project, but not exceeding one year.

R653-5-6. Procedures for Acquisition and Renewal of License
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(1) Application For License: In order to qualify for a cloud seeding license an applicant must:

(a) Submit a properly completed application to the Division; and

(b) Submit to the Division evidence of: i) the possession by the applicant of a baccalaureate or higher degree in meteorology or related physical science or engineering and at least five years experience in the field of meteorology, or ii) other training and experience as may be acceptable to the Division as indicative of sufficient competence in the field of meteorology to engage in cloud seeding activities.

(2) Renewal of License: A licensee may qualify for a renewal of a license by submitting an application for renewal. If an organization has hired replacement personnel, the organization shall attach to its application for renewal a statement setting forth the names and qualifications of qualified personnel.

R653-5-7. Procedures for Acquisition of Permit
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(1) Application for Permit: To qualify for a cloud seeding permit a licensee must:

(a) Submit a properly completed application to the Division;

(b) Submit proof of financial responsibility in order to give reasonable assurance of protection to the public in the event it should be established that damages were caused to third parties as a result of negligence in carrying out a cloud seeding project;

(c) Submit a copy of the contract or proposed contract between the sponsor and licensed contractor relating to the project;

(d) Submit the plan of operation for the project, including a map showing locations of all equipment to be used as well as equipment descriptions;

(e) Receive preliminary approval of the project from the Director before proceeding with notices of intent described in R653-5-7(7) and (8) of this rule.

(f) File with the Division a notice of intention for publication which sets forth the following:

(i) the name and address of the applicant;

(ii) statement that a cloud seeding license has been issued by the Division;

(iii) the nature and the objective of the intended operation, and the person or organization on whose behalf it is to be conducted;

(iv) the specific area in which, and the approximate date and time during which the operation will be conducted;

(v) the specific area which is intended to be affected by the operation;

(vi) the materials and methods to be used in conducting the operation; and

(vii) a statement that persons interested in the permit application should contact the Division.

(g) File with the Division, within 15 days from the last date of the publication of notice, proof that the applicant caused the notice of intention to be published at least once a week for three consecutive weeks in a newspaper having a general circulation within each county in which the operation is to be conducted and in which the affected area is located. Publication of notice shall not commence until the applicant has received approval of the form and substance of the notice of intention from the Director.

(2) Description of a Permit: A licensee shall comply with all the requirements set out in his permit. A permit shall include the following:

(a) The effective period of the permit, which shall not exceed one year;

(b) The location of the operation;

(c) The methods which may be employed; and

(d) Other necessary terms, requirements, and conditions.

(3) Authority to Amend a Permit: The Division may amend the terms of a permit after issuance if it determines that it is in the public interest.

R653-5-8. Revocation and Suspension of Licenses and Permits
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(1) Automatic Suspension of a Permit: Any cloud seeding permit issued under the terms of this rule shall be suspended automatically if the licensee's cloud seeding license should expire, or in the case of an organization being the licensee, if the person listed on the application for the permit as being in control of, and in charge of, operations for the licensee should become incapacitated, leave the employment of the licensee, or for any other reason be unable to continue to be in control of, and in charge of, the operation in question; and a replacement approved by the Director, has not been obtained.

(2) Reinstatement of Permit: A permit which is suspended, may be, at the discretion of the Director, reinstated following renewal of the expired license, or submission of an amended personnel statement nominating a person whose qualifications for controlling and being in charge of the operation are acceptable to the Director.

(3) Director's Authority to Suspend or Revoke Licenses and Permits: The Director may suspend or revoke any existing license or permit for the following reasons:

(a) If the licensee no longer possesses the qualifications necessary for the issuance of a license or permit;

(b) If the licensee has violated any of the provisions of the Cloud Seeding Act;

(c) If the licensee has violated any of the provisions of this rule; or

(d) If the licensee has violated any provisions of the license or permit.

R653-5-9. Record Keeping and Reports
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(1) Information to be Recorded: Any individual or organization conducting weather modification operations in Utah shall keep and maintain a record of each operation conducted. For the purposes of this Section, the daily log required by Title 15, Chapter IX, Sub-Chapter A, Part 908, Section 908.8 (a), Code of Federal Regulations, November 1, 1972, as amended, and the supplemental information required by Sections 908.8 (b), (c), and (d) will be considered adequate, provided that each applicant for a weather modification permit submit with the application a list containing the name and post office address of each individual who will participate or assist in the operation, and promptly report any changes or additions to this list to the Division.

(2) Reports:

(a) Each individual and organization conducting weather modification operations in Utah shall submit copies of the daily log and supplemental information for each month, to the Division by the last day of each succeeding month.

(b) Information copies of all other reports required by Title 15, Chapter IX, Sub-Chapter A, Part 908, Sections 908.5, 908.6, and 908.7, Code of Federal Regulations, shall be submitted to the Division as soon as practicable, but in no case later than the deadlines set by the Federal Regulation.

(c) Copies of all reports, publications, pamphlets, and evaluations made by either the licensed contractor or sponsor regarding a cloud seeding project must be submitted to the Division at the time these are made public.

(d) In relation to any evaluations made for cloud seeding effectiveness, both the method of evaluation and the data used shall be submitted to the Division.