Department of Conservation previews SGMA multi-benefit land repurposing program

The view from Calcareous Vineyard in Paso Robles, Calif. on April 28th, 2015.
Kelly M. Grow/ California Department of Water Resources

Upcoming workshops to gather public input on the new program

At the September meeting of the California Water Commission, Kealiʻi Bright, Assistant Director of the Division of Land Resource Protection at the California Department of Conservation (or DOC), gave a presentation on a new program being spun up to repurpose farmland being retired due to SGMA implementation.

Mr. Bright began by acknowledging that the Department of Conservation being at a Water Commission might be unusual because they are not a groundwater agency or any kind of water agency, but they are an agency with a suite of programs that invest in natural and working lands’ land use, they support conservation organizations that do work within natural and working lands, and they have different programs that fund permanent conservation in those lands.

So while we aren’t a water agency with water expertise, what we do have is a pretty a pretty vast and strong network of conservation partners throughout the state,” he said.  “We are really excited to help DWR, the Water Board, and all of you implement what is a little bit further beyond the horizon of groundwater sustainability efforts.”

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