PT 004: Groundwater, SGMA

In this episode of Paper Trail Paul is joined by Tulare County Board Supervisor Kuyler Crocker. Tulare County is ground zero for groundwater over draft as farmers scrambled for water during the 2011-2016 historic drought. In the midst of the drought and with groundwater levels effecting cities, counties, farmers and unincorporated communities, the State of California passed the Sustainable Groundwater Management Act. SGMA forces the creation of Groundwater Sustainability Agencies over underground water basins who are tasked with defining what is sustainable use of groundwater and governing it themselves.

On June 30, 2017 all GSAs had to have been formed and on June 30, 2020 they will have to be able to present a plan that will lead toward underground water sustainability. But the issue is rather muddy when it comes to multiple GSAs over one sub-basin.

Kuyler, who is not only a Tulare County Board Supervisor but a farmer as well, provides a clear perspective on SGMA and speculates on what will happen moving forward as GSAs attempt to define sustainable groundwater use.