Montecito GSA to Discuss Setting Criteria for Sustainable Management on May 11

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Source: Montecito Groundwater Sustainability Agency (GSA)

What are Sustainable Management Criteria?

The Montecito Groundwater Basin Groundwater Sustainability Agency (Montecito GSA) invites the public to attend its quarterly Board Meeting on Wednesday, May 11 at 9:30am. Topics of discussion will include Sustainability Indicators, how they will be evaluated, and Sustainable Management Criteria—such as minimum thresholds for groundwater and contaminant levels. The meeting will be held in person at 583 San Ysidro Road, Santa Barbara, California 93108, and may also be attended remotely using the teleconferencing information which will be posted on the agenda online at www.montecitogsa.com.

“Since the agency was established in 2018, the focus has been largely on defining the characteristics of the groundwater basin, identifying data gaps, and developing a model for the basin showing how it works,” said Nick Turner, General Manager for the Montecito GSA. “Grant funding has supported the implementation of key projects such as seawater intrusion monitoring, surface water flow monitoring, and a well metering
program that provides free meters for private wells to help gather critical data. We are nearing a point where we can present preliminary findings and discuss next steps.”

Locally, groundwater is heavily relied on for local residential, commercial and agricultural use—particularly during periods of drought. The Montecito Groundwater Basin supplies water for numerous public and private wells, and the Montecito GSA’s mission is to ensure a reliable and sustainable groundwater supply for the community through effective basin management pursuant to the Sustainable Groundwater Management Act.

The agency is tasked with preparing the State’s required Groundwater Sustainability Plan, which includes determining ways to avoid undesirable results that may occur without proper stewardship of the basin, such as seawater intrusion, lowering groundwater levels, or depletion of groundwater supplies. Data collection and the effort to increase participation from private well owners and the public at large is an ongoing focus and needed to fulfill the plan’s requirements.

To learn more about the Montecito GSA and the importance of groundwater for the community visit www.montecitogsa.com ; email info@montecitogsa.com ; or call 805.324.4207.

Examples of Montecito GSA projects supported by the Sustainable Groundwater Management Grant Program, funded through the California's Department of Water Resources (DWR):

Seawater Intrusion Monitoring Wells are evaluated regularly for data to assess sea water intrusion risk and to establish monitoring points for minimum thresholds related to groundwater levels and quality.

Surface Water Flow Gages and monitoring at several locations provide a direct method of estimating groundwater recharge from streams and creeks within the Montecito Groundwater Basin.

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