By Cindy Charles
The California Sportfishing Protection Alliance (CSPA), along with AquAlliance and the California Water Impact Network, filed three separate lawsuits in February 2022 against the Butte, Colusa, and Vina subbasins’ Groundwater Sustainability Plans (GSPs).
The lawsuits argue that all three GSPs will continue to threaten groundwater users and the environment by accepting domestic well failures and not preventing additional groundwater loss. Among the three plans, there are concerns about the acceptance of unreasonable land subsidence and the use of inadequate well monitoring parameters. The lawsuits also claim that the plans’ projects and management actions are ambiguous and unenforceable.
The GSPs are required to meet mandates from the 2014 Sustainable Groundwater Management Act (SGMA). SGMA was enacted to halt overdraft and bring groundwater basins into balanced levels of pumping and recharge. The lawsuits argue that all three GSPs fail to achieve sustainable groundwater management and need to be declared invalid.