The Sacramento Bee ran a lengthy roundup of groundwater sustainability issues by Investigative journalist Susan Sward this week. It’s really good to see the state’s paper of record paying attention to the depth and granularity of this issue, and we’re appreciative both of Susan’s experience—she worked as an investigative reporter at the Chronicle for decades before working with the Bee—and her thorough approach to this work.
Ms. Sward was positive about our efforts to ensure groundwater sustainability in California, and to include community voices in the process:
“It would be naive, of course, to expect that this groundwater statute might upend the current world of water in California, where the most powerful interests carry the biggest clout,” she concluded. “But it can be hoped that the law will be a vehicle that gives all stakeholders – including the small ones – a real voice in decisions”.
Overall, Sward’s article makes clear that the 2014 Sustainable Groundwater Management Act (SGMA) is unprecedented legislation, that aims to ensure California’s groundwater is sustainably managed by 2040. The law also puts a heavy emphasis on local management of groundwater basins. Not only will it be important for local agencies to cooperate with each other like never before, but it’s also an opportunity for communities who have the most at stake with groundwater to get involved and have their voices heard.
This article also features quotes from fellow NGO collaborative members including Jennifer Clary from Clean Water Action, and Kristin Dobbin from the Community Water Center. We are very pleased with this coverage, and hope the paper continues to follow the issue in the future.
Check out the full article here.
-By Kori Johnson-Lane, CivicSpark: Water Fellow