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Earth shattering news!

California Regional Quality Control Board holds Westlands responsible for effects of poor irrigation practices, demands wastewater treatment permit

November 1, 2008. CSPA has just learned that in an unprecedented action, the Regional Quality Control Board, Central Valley Region, has notified Westlands Water District that its irrigation practices pose a threat to the state's groundwater and wildlife. In the October 22nd letter addressed to Tom Birmingham, General Manager of the Westlands Water District, Pamela C. Creedon, Executive Officer for the district, states, "Irrigation water when applied to leach salts from the root zone possesses a threat to groundwater quality both in the immediate area of application and adjacent areas where groundwater migrates"

The letter goes on to state that while the Bureau of Reclamation has the statuary duty to provide for drainage to the San Luis Unit of the district and that while Westlands and the Bureau have been working to solve the problem with no foreseeable agreement, that the magnitude of the problem demands that Westlands address the problem.

The regional board is requiring that the the district apply for a permit and prepare a wastewater treatment plan that deals with collection and disposal of pollutants. The board is requiring a response within 90 days.

You can be sure that CSPA will carefully monitor the application and timeline and may apply for "designated party" status in the application process.

Letter to Westlands from the California Regional Water Quality Control Board. Central Valley Region