In 2014, the State of California adopted the Sustainable Groundwater Management Act (SGMA) to help manage its groundwater. According to SGMA, local Groundwater Sustainability Agencies (GSAs) must be formed for all high and medium priority groundwater basins in the state. These GSAs must develop and implement Groundwater Sustainability Plans (GSPs) for managing and using groundwater. A major component of each GSP is the development of adequate groundwater monitoring networks to set a baseline for current groundwater levels and determine the sustainable yield of the basin, as well as track the effectiveness of sustainable management criteria as developed by the GSAs to meet the groundwater sustainability management goals in the GSPs.
The Petaluma Valley GSA received a $1 million grant from California’s Department of Water Resources through the California Drought, Water, Parks, Climate, Coastal Protection, and Outdoor Access for All Act of 2018 (Proposition 68). One of the grant components is the planning, design, and installation of up to four, multi-level groundwater monitoring wells drilled to depths of up to 500 feet within the GSP area. The specific focus is to provide monitoring data in areas identified as groundwater data gaps with important features such as fault zones, groundwater basin boundaries, baylands, or proximity to areas of substantial groundwater pumping.
The Proposed Project would improve the Petaluma Valley’s GSA’s monitoring networks through the installation of up to four, multi-level monitoring wells within the Petaluma Valley Groundwater Basin. These wells would range from approximately 200 to 500 feet in depth and each well casing would have a diameter of 2.5 inches. The wells would be installed within boreholes with a maximum diameter of 16 inches. The duration of construction for the entire Proposed Project is anticipated to be six to eight months. The monitoring wells will provide groundwater information to support and implement long-term sustainable groundwater planning and management, and inform projects to help the GSP meet the sustainable groundwater management goals of the Basin.