Sustainable Groundwater Management
For many decades, the San Benito County Water District (SBCWD) has been a steadfast steward of groundwater resources in San Benito County, actively managing the groundwater basins to protect water quality and maintain a reliable and sustainable water supply. For SBCWD and other water agencies, it’s getting more and more difficult to ensure long-term groundwater sustainability, with climate variability, growth in both urban and agricultural land use, changes in types of agricultural uses, availability and cost of imported water, and other factors.
To assist water agencies like SBCWD in meeting these significant groundwater challenges, the state-wide Sustainable Groundwater Management Act was passed in 2014. This law outlines new requirements and tools for ensuring the long-term sustainability of these critical sources of water supply.
Go to the Community Involvement page of this website https://www.sbcwd.com/community-involvement/ to view the PowerPoint presentations and agendas from previous meetings and workshops.
A Technical Advisory Committee (TAC) was held via teleconference on April 28th. Simulations of future scenarios incorporating growth and Climate Change were discussed. The committee was presented with projects and management actions that could offset these issues along with how they would be implemented.
A public workshop was held via Zoom to give an overview of SGMA and the GSP process, defining sustainable groundwater management, monitoring and reporting, projects and management actions and funding options for GSP implementation. Audience members provided questions and comments.
A Technical Advisory Committee (TAC) was held via teleconference on February 24th. The Committee discussed monitoring, management actions, which included managed aquifer recharge.
A Technical Advisory Committee (TAC) was held via teleconference on January 27th. Discussion was centered around measuring groundwater and funding for GSP development and implementation.
A workshop for San Benito County elected officials was held via Zoom on Wednesday, December 9th from 4pm to 6pm. The workshop was a recap of progress achieved by the San Benito County Groundwater Sustainability Agency (GSA), in creating a Groundwater Sustainability Plan (GSP), guided by the Sustainable Groundwater Management Act (SGMA). The public was also welcomed.
A Technical Advisory Committee (TAC) was held via teleconference on November 4th. Discussion was centered around management actions and a possible fee structure.
A Technical Advisory Committee (TAC) was held via teleconference on September 29th. Discussion focused on monitoring network and reporting, data gaps, measuring agricultural pumping and next steps.
A virtual public workshop was held on September 23rd. Discussion included: management areas, water budget and sustainable yield.
A Technical Advisory Committee (TAC) was held via teleconference on August 26, 2020. Discussion on setting sustainability criteria for land subsidence and depletion of interconnected water were the main topics.
A Technical Advisory Committee (TAC) was held via teleconference on July 22, 2020; update on GSP schedule and progress. Discussion continued on sustainability criteria and establishing minimum thresholds.
A Technical Advisory Committee (TAC) was held via teleconference on April 29, 2020; discussion of setting sustainable criteria for groundwater levels.
A Progress Report has been developed to describe the advancement of the Groundwater Sustainability Plan (GSP): Progress Report 2020
A Technical Advisory Committee (TAC) was held on February 24,2020; discussion on the sustainability criteria for water quality continued.
A Technical Advisory Committee (TAC) was held on January 13, 2020; a revised water budget was presented and continued discussion on the sustainability criteria for water quality ensued.
A Technical Advisory Committee (TAC) was held on October 30, 2019; a draft section of the water budget was reviewed and the sustainability criteria on water quality was initiated.
A Technical Advisory Committee (TAC) was held on August 28, 2019; the majority of the meeting was spent discussing the sustainability criteria on water supply.
The workshop on June 18, 2019 provided an update on the GSP process, a summary of two new draft sections: Hydrogeologic Conceptual Model and Groundwater Conditions, and a poster session providing opportunities for discussion.
A Technical Advisory Committee (TAC) was held on April 24, 2019; major topics of discussion were the Hydrogeologic Conceptual Model (HCM), groundwater conditions, overview of Management Areas and evaluating sustainability criteria.
On January 14, 2019, the SBCWD GSA Board of Directors received a presentation of the Annual Groundwater Report; this report includes an overview on SGMA and an update on GSP development. See the most recent Annual Report at https://www.sbcwd.com/about-groundwater-our-basins/.
A Technical Advisory Committee (TAC) was also held on January 14, 2019; major topics of discussion were availability of data to prepare the GSP, and concepts of sustainability.
Two draft sections of the GSP-Introduction and Plan Area-have been uploaded to the website and are available for review. See the “GSP Development” page on this website https://www.sbcwd.com/gsp-development/ to see the preliminary schedule for GSP Draft Section Review and how you can submit comments.
The workshop held on November 14, 2018 provided introduction to SGMA, GSA organization, GSP Plan Area, GSP process and draft sections: Introduction and Plan Area.
Preparation of the GSP document is underway. The GSP process—involving preparation and review of draft document sections and technical memoranda—will be introduced in a community workshop scheduled for November 14.
A Technical Advisory Committee (TAC) has been organized. This group of individuals—representing environmental, technical, agricultural, and land use planning fields—will assist in reviewing and contributing to the technical aspects of the GSP. An initial meeting of the TAC was convened on August 15, 2018.
The San Benito County Water District has been approved to become the GSA for the Tres Pinos Valley basin. It is also filing an application to consolidate the Bolsa, Hollister, San Juan Bautista, and Tres Pinos Valley basins into one basin, to provide continuity from comprehensive, historical groundwater management, and support the transition to cost-effective sustainable management. A State decision on the proposed basin consolidation is expected this fall.