The California Water Commission, in support of Water Resilience Portfolio Action 3.6, will hold public workshops to explore ways that the State can support in-basin, locally-led groundwater trading programs that ensure protections for communities, small- and medium-size farms, and the environment. The public is encouraged to share their ideas and concerns on groundwater trading at one or more of these scheduled workshops:
Thursday, October 28, 2021 – 2:30-5 p.m. Register here
Friday, October 29, 2021 – 9:30 a.m. to noon. Register here
Groundwater trading programs are one of the tools that Groundwater Sustainability Agencies can use to help manage pumping within their basins as they work to comply with the Sustainable Groundwater Management Act. Well-managed groundwater trading is based on sound water accounting, careful groundwater allocations, strong stakeholder engagement, and trading rules that avoid negative impacts. The Commission will gather information and test assumptions at the workshops regarding opportunities and concerns around groundwater trading; potential impacts to ecosystems, farms, and communities; and an appropriate state role in groundwater trading. The Commission hopes to hear from diverse participants about how groundwater trading could impact or benefit them.
“Allowing GSAs the flexibility to create trading programs that work locally and protect vulnerable water users will result in greater water resilience not only in their communities but for the state as a whole,” said Commission Chair Teresa Alvarado.
The Commission will use the information gathered at these workshops to help formulate a policy paper with a set of conclusions around how to shape well-managed groundwater trading programs with appropriate safeguards for vulnerable water users. The Commission’s work will outline next steps the State could take to advance well-managed groundwater trading. The draft paper will be available for public comment before it is finalized in early 2022. For more information on the workshops and the Commission’s work on groundwater trading programs, visit cwc.ca.gov/Programs-and-Topics.
The nine-member California Water Commission uses its public forum to explore water management issues from multiple perspectives and to formulate recommendations to advise the director of the California Department of Water Resources, and as appropriate, the California Natural Resources Agency, the Governor and Legislature on ways to improve water planning and management in response to California’s changing hydrology. For more information regarding the California Water Commission visit cwc.ca.gov.