Four Central Valley groundwater plans fail to meet California standards. What’s next

Fresno Bee

Four groundwater plans in the Central Valley — including those for Westlands and Chowchilla water districts and the Merced and Eastern San Joaquin subbasins — do not show how they will protect water quality, keep drinking water wells from going dry or stop land from sinking further, according to the Department of Water Resources.

In short, those plans earned “D’s” in DWR’s first round of assessments of Central Valley groundwater plans. DWR expects to issue assessments on the remaining groundwater plans, about 36 that cover the Valley from Madera to Kern counties, within the first two weeks of December.

Groundwater agency managers weren’t given DWR’s assessments prior to their release Thursday morning so couldn’t answer questions about specific issues. Some plan managers said they only received calls from DWR alerting them of the coming assessments the day before.

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