groundwater

Los Osos Groundwater Basin 2015 Annual Report

San Luis Obispo county officials will hold a public hearing on the topic of groundwater basin management after a recent vote provoked allegations of Brown Act violations.

Paso Robles Groundwater Management Plan

The Sustainable Groundwater Management Act (SGMA) - passed into law in 2014 - for the first time requires organized management of the state's underground reservoirs of fresh water. It provides a framework for creating new governing agencies to do so,  and requires those agencies to create, maintain and enforce sustainable management plans.

Greta Mart/KCBX

Water advocacy leaders in California are calling for the state government to permanently invest in water infrastructure--noting that over 300 California communities are affected by unsafe drinking water. 

Mark Adams, Facebook

The San Luis Obispo County Board of Supervisors voted unanimously Tuesday to extend an urgency ordinance aimed at protecting oak woodlands. 

Nipomo Community Services District (NCSD)

The Nipomo Community Services District (NCSD) Board passed a Stage IV Water Shortage resolution back on July 27, bringing new conservation goals into focus.

San Luis Obispo County

Testing of groundwater and soil samples is underway at the San Luis Obispo Airport, as an independent testing company works to find the source of chemical contamination showing up in the well water of neighboring homes.

San Luis Obispo County

The controversy surrounding oak woodland clear cutting by Justin Vineyards on its properties in North County San Luis Obispo is now making its way to the San Luis Obispo County Board of Supervisors.

Google Maps

A plan to expand an area approved for oil industry injection wells near Pismo Beach is now in the hands of the federal Environmental Protection Agency. 

Several Central Coast groundwater basins are on a California Department of Water Resources (DWR) draft list of water supplies that are tagged as being in critical overdraft. 

USDA

Scientists at UC Santa Barbara are beginning work on a project that could reduce the amount of groundwater and power that is used by farmers in the state, after receiving a grant from the California Energy Commission (CEC) of $2.3 million.

Nipomo Community Services District (NCSD)

Customers of the Nipomo Community Services District (NCSD) will be paying more for water in the coming months as the District hooks up to an additional water source.

Michael LeBrun is the District's General Manager and says rates will jump by about 30 percent in July when the water starts flowing.

The new pipeline will bring water in from Santa Maria to help diversify Nipomo's options. Currently, the area's sole source is groundwater.

LeBrun says the project has been in the works for decades and is gaining in local support amidst the current drought.

Flickr member ben klocek

A new bill up for consideration in Sacramento is aimed at protecting groundwater from oil and gas drilling operations.

Central Coast Assembly Member Das Williams (D-Carpinteria) introduced AB-356 on Tuesday. It would require monitoring near Class II injection wells.

Currently, there are nearly 42,000 oil field injection wells operating in the state, according to the California Department of Conservation. These wells are designed to increase oil recovery and "safely dispose of the salt and fresh water produced with oil and natural gas" the department states.

Jordan Bell

Experts at Cal Poly are starting work on a project to help disadvantaged communities in California access safe drinking water.

The ongoing drought has left communities particularly those in California's Central Valley with two major problems: a lack of water, and the water they do have contains concentrated contaminates like nitrates.

Water is the main focus at Cal Poly's Irrigation Training and Research Center (ITRC) for Dr. Stuart Styles. He says because of the drought a lot of farmer's turned to groundwater, drying up surrounding wells.

Jason Lopez

A milestone event in the Village of Cambria's ongoing water saga is scheduled to take place Tuesday afternoon when the emergency water project begins pumping into the local aquifer, as designed.

The system works by drawing up groundwater that is not potable because of seawater intrusion and treated effluent. That water is then filtered and pumped back into the ground.

The system has been in test mode since November and was originally slated to switch into operational mode last month.

Tom Wilmer

A couple of environmental lawsuits filed against Monterey County were settled Tuesday—at least for the time being.

Landwatch Monterey County and The Open Monterey Project sued back in 2010 following the adoption of the new county's General Plan. Those two lawsuits were combined.

The plaintiffs were concerned with management of the Salinas Valley Groundwater Basin, encroachment of agriculture on the county's hillsides, blockage of wildlife corridors, and other aspects regarding the county's agriculture and wine industries.

California drought amounts to mixed blessing for winemakers this harvest

Dec 9, 2014
Julian Del Gaudio

When you walk around Tablas Creek vineyard in Paso Robles, there are few obvious signs that California is in one of its worst droughts on record.

“It actually looks less different than you would expect grapevines have evolved to grow well in climates that are dry” says Jason Haas who runs this vineyard.

Grapes have their origins in the Middle East and Mediterranean, two regions with similar and sometimes even drier climates than the Central Coast.

Vines have adapted ways to protect the plant when rainfall is scarce and that included changes to the fruit production.

A bill in Sacramento aimed at creating a Paso Robles groundwater management district is on its way to the governor's desk after passing in the Assembly Monday 51 to 4.

AB 2453 was introduced by Assemblyman Katcho Achadjian (R-San Luis Obispo) this past spring and had undergone a number of changes since then, which lost it some local support. However, in the end the bill was something those pushing for the district could get behind including interest groups representing vineyard owners and home owners.

USGS

A new scientific federal study shows groundwater in Santa Barbara County's Cuyama Valley is being depleted two times faster than it's being replenished.

Groundwater is the sole source for agricultural, domestic and municipal water in the valley during dry periods, according to the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS). 

Scientist Randy Hansen is the lead author for the USGS study and says the water quality coming from the basin is not very good to begin with and over-pumping can make it worse.

California Water Foundation, groundwatervoices.com

A new report released Monday by the Groundwater Voices Coalition shows some Central Coast water supplies could be rendered useless if current conditions persist.

California's groundwater levels have been dropping for years but the recent drought has escalated the issue, and now seawater contamination is a growing threat to our supply on the Central Coast. 

Kate Williams from the California Water Foundation says it's normal to rely on groundwater during dry years, but this drought has caused people to rely solely on it, leading to things like over-pumping.