A groundwater basin consists of a single or multiple aquifers made of permeable rock or sediment, which are capable of storing and transmitting water to wells and springs.
Frequently Asked Questions
Overdraft occurs where the average annual amount of groundwater extraction exceeds the long-term average annual supply of water to the basin. Effects of overdraft result can include seawater intrusion, land subsidence, groundwater depletion, and/or chronic lowering of groundwater levels. As defined by SGMA, “A basin is subject to critical overdraft when continuation of present water management practices would probably result in significant adverse overdraft-related environmental, social, or economic impacts.”
The Bedford Coldwater Groundwater Subbasin is not considered to be critically overdrafted.
The Bedford Coldwater Subbasin is a 7,025-acre subbasin of the Elsinore Basin. Each member agency of the BCGSA overlies a portion of the subbasin and exercises water management, water supply or land use authority within a portion of the subbasin.
SGMA defines sustainable groundwater management as the management and use of groundwater in a manner that can be maintained during the planning and implementation horizon without causing undesirable results.
The planning and implementation horizon is a 50-year time period over which plans and measures will be implemented in a basin to ensure that the basin is operated within its sustainable yield.
Sustainable yield is the maximum quantity of water that can be withdrawn annually from a groundwater supply without causing undesirable results.
Undesirable results include:
The Sustainable Groundwater Management Act, signed into law in 2014, provides a framework for long-term sustainable groundwater management across California. It requires that local and regional authorities in the medium- and high-priority groundwater basins form a locally-controlled and governed Groundwater Sustainability Agency (GSA), which will prepare and implement a Groundwater Sustainability Plan (GSP).
- Respects regional differences and provides for a tailored approach to planning
- Establishes minimum standards for sustainable groundwater management
- Improves coordination between land use and groundwater planning
- Provides state technical assistance
- Creates a mechanism for state intervention if, and only if, a local agency is not managing its groundwater sustainably
- Protects water rights
A local agency, combination of local agencies, or county may establish a GSA. It is the GSA’s responsibility to develop and implement a groundwater sustainability plan (GSP) that considers all beneficial uses and users of groundwater in the basin. GSAs must be formed by June 30, 2017.
GSAs must develop GSPs with measureable objectives and interim milestones that ensure basin sustainability. A basin may be managed by a single GSP or multiple coordinated GSPs.