SGMA in the News

Indian Wells Valley Groundwater Authority mulls over sustainability plan outline and timeline

July 27, 2018

From the Ridgecrest Independent:

“Stetson Engineers, the firm acting as water resources manager for the Indian Wells Valley Groundwater Authority, outlined progress and a timeline on a required groundwater sustainability plan during a July 19 meeting.

According to Steve Johnson, Stetson Engineers’ president, elements of the plan go to the Groundwater Authority’s technical advisory committee and its policy advisory committee, which is tasked with looking through it and making recommendations to the water resources manager.

Jeff Helsley, with Stetson, said that in the next six to eight weeks, the Groundwater Authority may have an introductory chapter before the committee, followed by more committees later on. … “

Continue reading at the Ridgecrest Independent by clicking here.

Category: News Article

DWR Extends Basin Boundary Modifications Submission Period to September

July 24, 2018

From the Department of Water Resources:

The Department of Water Resources has extended the Basin Boundary Modifications submission period to September 28, 2018, in response to comments received on the Draft 2018 SGMA Basin Prioritization. The extension will allow additional opportunity for local agencies to consider basin boundary modifications that support and promote sustainable groundwater management.

This extension affects the timeline for finalizing both Basin Boundary Modifications and 2018 SGMA Basin Prioritization. The schedule for Basin Prioritization has been updated accordingly. Please be reminded that until prioritizations are finalized, the 2014 CASGEM Basin Prioritization continues to define SGMA priority basins.

Additional information is available on the Basin Boundary Modifications webpage . All information to support basin boundary modifications must be submitted on the Basin Boundary Modifications Request System. For more information, contact Dane Mathis at dane.mathis@water.ca.gov or (559) 230-3354.

Timeline

  • September 28, 2018: Deadline for Basin Boundary Modifications submissions.
  • November 2018: Expected release of Draft 2018 Basin Boundary Modifications.
  • February 2019: Expected release of Final 2018 Basin Boundary Modifications.
Category: Announcement

Indian Wells Valley Groundwater Authority technical advisory committee processes discussed

July 22, 2018

From the Ridgecrest Independent:

How exactly the IWV Groundwater Authority’s technical advisory committee operates was set clear on Thursday — at least as defined from a legal perspective, according to Keith Lemieux, the Authority’s 2018 legal counsel.

Questions and concerns have been fielded at several Groundwater Authority meetings over the TAC’s function allows, especially whether the committee can vote on items or take action.

Lemieux said he received questions about whether the committee can take action and what tasks it does at its meetings.  “It’s a fair question because unlike the other committee we have in the bylaws, the TAC is a very unusual animal,” Lemieux said.

Continue reading at the Ridgecrest Independent here:  Indian Wells Valley Groundwater Authority technical advisory committee processes discussed

Category: News Article

Indian Wells Valley Groundwater Authority passes pump fee ordinance

July 21, 2018

From the Ridgecrest Independent:

The Indian Wells Valley Groundwater Authority board voted 3-1 to formally adopt an ordinance imposing a monthly volumetric groundwater extraction fee on major pumpers at its Thursday meeting.

Ridgecrest Mayor Peggy Breeden voted no, as directed by the city council on Wednesday. Inyo County’s representative was not present. San Bernardino County representative Bob Page voted by telephone conference.

The fee will impose a fee of $30 per acre-foot pumped on major pumpers in the valley, including the IWV Water District, Searles Valley Minerals, and agricultural interests. The fee aims to fill a $930,000 budget gap in the development of a groundwater sustainability plan required by the Department of Water Resources by Jan. 31, 2020.

Click here to continue reading at the Ridgecrest Independent.

Category: News Article

Santa Cruz Mid-County Groundwater Agency aims to tackle groundwater problems

July 21, 2018

From the Santa Cruz Sentinel:

A diverse group of public officials, agency representatives and citizens are working to tackle one of the most pressing issues dogging the region — the continued depletion of groundwater reserves.

“There’s not a lot of water available for recharge and there’s not going to be one project that is going to get us to the finish line,” said Darcy Pruitt of the Santa Cruz Mid-County Groundwater Agency, a group mandated by state law to develop a sustainability plan for local aquifers. “It’s and, not or.”

Click here to continue reading at the Santa Cruz Sentinel.

Category: News Article

ASU scientists use satellites to measure vital underground water resources

July 20, 2018

From Arizona State University:

The availability of water from underground aquifers is vital to the basic needs of more than 1.5 billion people worldwide, including those of us who live in the western United States. In recent decades, however, the overpumping of groundwater, combined with drought, has caused some aquifers to permanently lose essential storage capacity.

With the hope of providing water resource managers with better tools to help keep aquifers healthy, a team of scientists from Arizona State University and the Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) are using the latest space technology to look underneath Earth’s surface to measure this precious natural resource.

They’ve focused their efforts on one of the world’s largest aquifer systems, located in California’s Central Valley, measuring both its groundwater volume and its storage capacity. The results of their most recent findings in this groundbreaking study have been recently published in Water Resources Research.

Click here to continue reading from Arizona State University.

Category: News Article

Indian Wells Valley Water District to unveil hydrological conceptual model on Friday

July 20, 2018

From the Ridgecrest Independent:

The Indian Wells Valley Water District will present a Hydrological Conceptual Model of the Indian Wells Valley at 9 a.m. on Friday at Ridgecrest City Hall.

The model was developed by the Danish company Ramboll. It uses geophysical data collected by SkyTEM during its aerial survey as well as information from several hundred geophysical well logs, driller’s logs and information from previous seismic studies.

The IWV Water District, Mojave Pistachios, Searles Valley Minerals, Coso Operating Company, and Meadowbrook Dairy are involved in the project.

Click here to continue reading at the Ridgecrest Independent.

Category: News Article

Indian Wells Valley: Pump fee adoption on the table at next Groundwater Authority meeting

July 19, 2018

From the Ridgecrest Independent:

“Major pumpers in the Indian Wells Valley groundwater basin will likely face an extraction fee following Thursday’s IWV Groundwater Authority board meeting, set for 10 a.m. at Ridgecrest City Hall, 100 W.California Ave.

The board will consider and vote on formally adopting the groundwater authority extraction fee, which assesses a monthly volumetric fee of $30 per acre-foot pumped. The fee aims to fill a $930,000 budget gap in the development of a groundwater sustainability plan required by the Department of Water Resources by Jan. 31, 2020. … “

Continue reading at the Ridgecrest Independent by clicking here.


Owens Valley Groundwater Authority meetings get interesting

July 18, 2018

From the Sierra Wave:

Owens Valley Groundwater Authority meetings are a little like watching a chess match. Not really adrenaline inducing, but there’s a lot going on between moves.

Last Thursday’s meeting is a good example.

The question before the 11-member board dealt with the re-prioritization of the Owens Valley basin from medium to high—a new wrinkle from the Department of Water Resources to slam a 42-point whammy on basins that export water.

Continue reading this article by clicking here.

Category: News Article

Thirsty vineyard, Big Ag test landmark aquifer law

July 17, 2018

From E&E News:

When Roberta Jaffe and her husband planted their small vineyard, one factor trumped all others: groundwater.

Knowing that this isolated valley in south-central California relies on a depleted aquifer, the couple “dry farmed” their Condor’s Hope Ranch, using 5 percent or less of the water required by a conventional vineyard.

“For us, it is very much about farming in a way that is harmonious with the environment,” Jaffe said. “This is what we see as what this environment can handle.”

So Jaffe was alarmed when Harvard University’s endowment fund installed an 850-acre conventional vineyard just down the road in 2014 — and drilled 14 wells.

Continue reading at E&E News by clicking here.

Category: News Article