Kansas, Nebraska Reach 1-Year Agreement on River Water Use

Kansas and Nebraska will extend for one year an agreement that allows Nebraska to pump more of its share of the Republican River while ensuring Kansas eventually gets all the water it is due.

The Republican River Compact Administration, which includes Colorado, announced the agreement Thursday. It extends similar agreements reached for the past two growing seasons.

The Topeka Capital-Journal reports Nebraska expects to pump about 35,000 acre-feet more than its share would allow in 2016. In return, Nebraska will pump enough groundwater to Harlan County reservoir this winter and spring to help Kansas through the 2016 growing season.

Officials say the agreement allows both states to use the water when it’s needed, and lets Nebraska replace the extra water when it’s not being used for agriculture.