Tag Archives: groundwater

Eric Garner on the Sustainable Groundwater Management Act: History in the making or another dead end?

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On January 1st, the new Sustainable Groundwater Management Act took effect. The statewide regulation of groundwater is one of the most important and controversial challenges facing the water managers and water users. At the fall conference of the Association of California Water Agencies, Best Best & Krieger’s managing partner Eric Garner gave the Thursday luncheon keynote address. In his speech, […]

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Groundwater adjudication hearing, part 3: Panel discussion on options for moving forward

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Groundwater adjudications, notoriously expensive and time consuming, emerged as an issue during the development and ultimate passage of the Sustainable Groundwater Management Act of 2014, and the Brown Administration has made it a priority to consider possible reforms.  To that end, on November 20, the Senate Committee on Natural Resources and Water held an informational hearing on groundwater adjudications titled, […]

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Groundwater adjudication hearing, part 2: Case Study on the Antelope Valley Adjudication

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The Antelope Valley groundwater adjudication case is the current poster child for how painfully long and expensive groundwater adjudications can be.  The enormous case involves a multitude of public agencies, farmers, cities, the federal government, and landowners, both large and small, some of whom pump water, but most who don’t but still hold groundwater rights that cannot be dismissed or […]

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Groundwater adjudication hearing, part 1: Justice Robie with an overview on how groundwater disputes are resolved in California

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In August of this year, Governor Brown signed the Sustainable Groundwater Management Act, requiring local officials for the first time to create sustainable groundwater management plans.  These management plans potentially could involve pumping restrictions or new pumping fees and as a result, more legal disputes and groundwater adjudications may likely result. Groundwater adjudications have been the solution for groundwater disputes […]

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2014 Water Year in Review, Part 3: Groundwater, Delta smelt, and Sacramento’s response to the drought

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At the November meeting of the Delta Stewardship Council, council members heard from numerous agency and water officials on how the state has responded to the drought conditions. In this final installment, Mary Scruggs from the Department of Water Resources discusses the impact the drought has had on the state’s groundwater resources, Mike Chotkowski with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife […]

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This just in … Updated Report: Groundwater Resources Depleted By Drought

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From the Department of Water Resources: Following one of the driest years on record when groundwater resources have provided an increasing percentage of California’s water supply, the Department of Water Resources (DWR) today released an updated report on groundwater basins that details groundwater level changes, potential water shortages, land subsidence, farmland fallowing and gaps in groundwater monitoring. Drought conditions typically […]

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Groundwater pumping and subsidence in the Central Valley

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It’s been called the largest alteration of the earth’s surface.  In the San Joaquin Valley,  since the 1920s, farmers have relied on groundwater to varying degrees, and over time, overpumping of groundwater basin has caused the land to subside – over 30 feet in some locations.  In this presentation, USGS hydrologist Michelle Sneed discusses subsidence in the San Joaquin Valley, […]

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Groundwater and surface water interactions under water shortage

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The exceptionally dry conditions along with the recent passage of groundwater legislation has focused the state’s attention on its groundwater resources.  In this presentation, Groundwater and Surface Water Interactions Under Water Shortage, Thomas Harter, faculty and cooperative extension specialist with UC Davis, gives an overview of groundwater and how groundwater works, where groundwater is in California, and how groundwater is […]

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Legislators and interest groups respond to Governor Brown’s signing of groundwater legislation


Legislators and interest groups are responding to Governor Brown’s signing of groundwater legislation today. (Click here for the governor’s press release.) Here’s what they had to say, listed in alphabetical order: Note:  I will continue to add to this post as I find other reactions, so do check back later – there will probably be more. From Timothy Quinn at […]

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This just in … Governor signs groundwater legislation

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From the Office of the Governor: Putting California communities on a path to become more resilient to water shortages, Governor Edmund G. Brown Jr. today signed historic legislation to strengthen local management and monitoring of groundwater basins most critical to the state’s water needs. “We have to learn to manage wisely water, energy, land and our investments,” said Governor Brown. […]

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