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PPIC: Valley groundwater plans not measuring up

 •  by Lois Henry
A PPIC review of groundwater sustainability plans found little planning for potential impacts to domestic wells.

Reviews are in and Central Valley groundwater plans are coming up short.

The plans aren’t aggressive enough in stemming plummeting groundwater levels and land subsidence; they are overly reliant on the hope of new water as a fix; and they don’t work regionally.

Those were the takeaways from a review by the Public Policy Institute of California, which looked at 36 of the 41 plans submitted to the state Department of Water Resources so far.

The PPIC outlined its findings during a webinar Thursday morning.

Yes, the plans may have shortcomings, webinar attendee Geoff Vanden Heuvel, director of regulatory affairs for the California Milk Producers Council, wrote in an email to PPIC presenters.

But groundwater accountability on this level is brand new in California.

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