On September 16, 2014, Governor Jerry Brown signed into law a three-bill legislative package, composed of AB 1739 (Dickinson), SB 1168 (Pavley), and SB 1319 (Pavley), collectively known as the Sustainable Groundwater Management Act (SGMA). For the first time in its history, California has a framework for sustainable, groundwater management - “management and use of groundwater in a manner that can be maintained during the planning and implementation horizon without causing undesirable results.”
SGMA requires governments and water agencies of high and medium priority basins to halt overdraft and bring groundwater basins into balanced levels of pumping and recharge. Under SGMA, these basins should reach sustainability within 20 years of implementing their sustainability plans. For critically over-drafted basins, that will be 2040. For the remaining high and medium priority basins, 2042 is the deadline.
In his signing statement, the governor emphasized that “groundwater management in California is best accomplished locally.” Through the Sustainable Groundwater Management Program, DWR provides ongoing support to local agencies through guidance and financial and technical assistance.
SGMA empowers local agencies to form Groundwater Sustainability Agencies (GSAs) to manage basins sustainably and requires those GSAs to adopt Groundwater Sustainability Plans (GSPs) for crucial groundwater basins in California.
📷 The SGMA Portal allows local agencies, GSAs, and watermasters to submit, modify, and view the information required by SGMA. It also enables you to view submitted information and provide comments, where applicable. You don't need a login for public access.
📷 We have a long history of data collection, monitoring, and reporting. With the passage of SGMA, there is an increased need for local and state agencies and the public to easily access water data in order to make informed management decisions. Here you will find a curated set of data, interactive mapping tools, and reports which are important resources to inform sustainable groundwater management decision-making.
📷 Our Facilitation Support Services (FSS) aim to help local agencies work through challenging water management situations. Professional facilitators are sometimes needed to help foster discussions among diverse water management interests and local agencies as they strive to implement SGMA. Our Technical Support Services (TSS) supports GSAs as they develop their GSPs. TSS’s goal is to provide education, data, and tools to GSAs to build the capacity needed to achieve sustainability.
📷 The Sustainable Groundwater Planning (SGWP) Grant Program provides funds for projects that develop and implement sustainable groundwater planning and projects consistent with groundwater planning requirements outlined in Division 6 of the California Water Code, commencing at §10000.