Placer approves multi-agency plan to protect 336,000 acre-feet of groundwater
Published Jan. 12, 2022
The Placer County Board of Supervisors on Tuesday approved a regional groundwater sustainability plan to protect groundwater resources in a portion of western Placer. In coordination with multiple regional agencies, the GSP details a long-term management plan for groundwater to avoid depletion of the resource.
“This plan will sustain 336,000 acre-feet of groundwater in Placer, protecting those who rely on the resources such as agriculture, residential well users and groundwater-dependent ecosystems,” said Environmental Engineering senior planner Chris Hanson. “Looking ahead, Placer’s groundwater reserves are projected to overdraft modestly due to climate change and population growth. The plan identifies how we will mitigate this challenge.”
Placer is part of the North American Subbasin, which is considered a high-priority basin due to expected growth and the region’s current reliance on groundwater. NASb also encompasses parts of Sacramento and Sutter counties, prompting Placer to coordinate with multiple agencies on the plan. Placer plans to mitigate overdraft concerns using a variety of strategies that are mapped out in the GSP.
The GSP indicates the subbasin is currently healthy and sustainable and includes a five-year plan that details several projects that will help protect the region’s groundwater levels and dependent ecosystems. The plan also calls for proactive coordination with land use agencies and improvement of well permitting processes so that new wells do not impact the water flow of existing wells.
The West Placer Groundwater Sustainability Agency was formed in 2017 to implement the Sustainable Groundwater Management Act passed in 2014. The act requires the formation of such agencies to manage local groundwater basins. Placer County, the cities of Roseville and Lincoln and Placer County Water Agency, in participation with the California American Water Company, make up the WPGSA. In January 2019, the WPGSA agencies coordinated with the four other groundwater sustainability agencies in the NASb (Reclamation District 1001 GSA, Sacramento Groundwater Authority GSA, South Sutter Water District GSA, and Sutter County GSA) to jointly fund, develop and submit a single basin-wide GSP.
To learn more about WPGSA and the GSP, visit https://westplacergroundwater.com/.