One third of California’s water supply comes from groundwater, but many basins are overdrawn or facing historic depletion levels. Effective groundwater management can help Californians plan for the future and ensure access to a sustainable, resilient supply of water.

The 2014 Sustainable Groundwater Management Act (SGMA) was enacted for that purpose. It requires local entities in California—including water agencies, agricultural groups, municipalities, and special districts—to collectively manage their water resources with the goal of eliminating overdraft by balancing pumping and recharge.

Local stakeholders have come together in medium- and high-priority groundwater basins to form groundwater sustainability agencies (GSAs) to manage their resources collaboratively. Under SGMA, each GSA must prepare a groundwater sustainability plan (GSP) to establish long-term balanced pumping and recharge. This will help preserve and sustain basin resources by preventing overdraft, maintaining water quality, and protecting riparian ecosystems and surface water flows.

GSI’s SGMA Experts

We bring the technical expertise needed to develop a compliant groundwater sustainability plan that represents basin stakeholders’ interests and achieve balanced pumping.

Our team of highly skilled groundwater specialists have the technical expertise needed to tackle the complex issues that are arising as part of the SGMA process. Our SGMA experts help GSAs by evaluating the complexities of water in the subsurface, developing water budgets that can achieve sustainability, identifying undesirable results of continued pumping, and identifying and implementing solutions to achieve sustainability goals.

Here’s how our SGMA team helps our clients:

  • Stakeholder facilitation: We work with growers, ranchers, and municipal utilities to collaboratively develop goals, objectives, and strategies for achieving sustainability.
  • Local groundwater expertise: We use our knowledge of local hydrogeology and groundwater conditions to characterize the geologic setting and develop historical and future water budgets, groundwater models, monitoring programs, and sustainable yield estimates.
  • Realistic management plans: We specialize in economically and technically feasible groundwater management plans. We focus on local stakeholders’ needs and advocate for their positions strongly.
  • Funding solutions: We help obtain the funding to develop groundwater sustainability plans, partnering with funding experts with insight into what the California Department of Water Resources is looking for in an application.

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