Organizations Call for More Effective Sonoma County Well Ordinance

Turtle Island Restoration Network (TIRN) and The Salmon Protection And Watershed Network (SPAWN), joined a coalition of organizations representing thousands of citizens in Sonoma County and across the state of California on fighting to ensure groundwater is sustainably and equitably managed. The group of organizations commented on the proposed amendment to the Sonoma County Ground Water Well Ordinance, calling for an effective Well Ordinance that will establish a program ensuring we live within our water means.

TIRN and SPAWN joined the organizations in the letter to the Sonoma County Board of Supervisors and County Staff fighting for sustainability and equity, to address the problems caused by unsustainable groundwater extraction.

These problems include loss of tourism, impacts to recreation economy, and impacts on wildlife throughout the county. The proposed Well Ordinance does not effectively deal with ongoing and future cumulative impacts of groundwater pumping on public trust resources or contain provisions that will ensure Sonoma County meets its legal duty to protect public trust resources and mitigate harms.

The organizations called on Sonoma County to commit to return, in two years or less, after filling acknowledged data gaps and completing essential analysis. With it, a program that is founded on empirical data and the robust analysis necessary to ensure long-term sustainability and protection of public trust resources.

The letter lists several ways the county can improve sustainability, inclusion, and equity in a new plan. To read the letter in its entirety, find it here.