Ready or not, California’s new Sustainable Groundwater Management Act (“SGMA”) is here and mine operators should be vigilant in monitoring and actively participating in developments under the law. Previously, the use of groundwater was largely unregulated. Now local agencies are in the driver’s seat when it comes to addressing a very complex problem: managing groundwater to ensure sustainability.
Earlier this week, environmental consultant Bob Anderson, of Geosyntec and Stoel Rives attorneys Wes Miliband and Tom Henry hosted a webinar about the implications of SGMA for mine operators. You can view a recording of the webinar here. Below are a few key take away points for operators as they tackle SGMA.
The Compliance Timeline is Aggressive
SGMA requires the formation of local Groundwater Sustainability Agencies (“GSAs”) that must assess conditions in their local water basins and adopt locally-based groundwater sustainability plans (“GSPs”). GSAs have already started to form and will be developed by June 30, 2017. Operators should investigate the proposed GSAs affecting their sites. The Department of Water Resources has developed a useful interactive map showing the proposed GSAs. Operators and the general public have the opportunity to be involved in the formation of GSAs and preparation of GSPs.
Continue Reading Why California’s New Groundwater Management Law is a Game Changer for Mine Operators