The registering or licensing of groundwater abstraction is held as a "best practice" in the control of groundwater use and a necessary step towards volumetric management of resources. Yet, groundwater licensing and legalization processes in areas with many scattered users tend to face difficulties and are not often successful. 

Licensing wells means that procedures must also be established for applications to deepen, clean or replace wells to prevent users from referring to these categories to cloak the drilling of new wells. 

A few steps for the facilitation of of well licensing include:

  • Defining exemptions-Thresholds must be carefully crafted to strike a balance between the bureaucratic workload for regulatory agencies and not undermining the quantitative management of the aquifer.
  • Making registration simple- Rather than making a long list of demands, well registration/legalization should be made easy and cheap
  • Balancing incentives- The failure to register a well should entail a loss of benefits and credible threats, while legalizing/registering a well should on the contrary be rewarded