Why form a separate agency to manage groundwater?
In 2014, Governor Brown signed into law the Sustainable Groundwater Management Act (SGMA), which requires definitive timelines for local agencies to sustainability manage groundwater in the California Department of Water Resources (DWR) Bulletin 118 defined basins and sub-basins. Sustainable groundwater management is defined as using groundwater during a period of time without causing undesirable results. (Water Code § 10721(v).) In Water Code section 10721(x), (1-6), undesirable results refer to chronic lowering of groundwater levels, reduction of groundwater storage, seawater intrusion, degraded water quality, subsidence, and surface/groundwater interconnection.