SACRAMENTO, CALIF. — The Bureau of Reclamation announced selected four groundwater banking projects that will receive an estimated $12.7 million in cost-share funding under Part III of the San Joaquin River Restoration Settlement Act, including $10 million in Fiscal Year 2013 awards. Combined with local cost-share contributions, more than $39.6 million in water management improvements will be implemented through these projects for Friant Division water contractors in the San Joaquin Valley.
The selected projects are projected to yield more than 760,000 acre-feet of water during their 30-year project life cycle. Local water districts will implement these projects to increase and improve water supplies as part of meeting the San Joaquin River Restoration Program’s Water Management Goal to reduce or avoid adverse water supply impacts to all of the Friant Division long-term contractors that may result from the interim and restoration flows provided for in the Stipulation of Settlement in NRDC, et al., v. Kirk Rodgers, et al.
Reclamation selected the following four projects to fund across the Central Valley Project, Friant Division:
Tulare Irrigation District, $1,948,891 — Tulare Irrigation District, along with Kaweah Delta Water Conservation District, plans to construct the 60-acre Cordeniz Basin and realign a portion of the Serpa Ditch to increase the district’s ability to recharge groundwater. The project also includes a Groundwater Recharge Capacity Study, a Groundwater Basin Strategic Plan, and developing an Exchange Program to bank water underground in wet years in exchange for dry year surface supplies. The project’s annual yield will be about 8,500 acre-feet.
Shafter-Wasco Irrigation District, $5,000,000 — Shafter-Wasco Irrigation District, along with Delano-Earlimart Irrigation District, Kern-Tulare Water District, and Semitropic Water Storage District, plans to construct the Madera Avenue Intertie, a conveyance alternative identified in the Poso Creek Integrated Regional Water Management Plan, completed in 2007. The intertie will be a bi-directional 50-cubic-feet-per-second pipeline and pumping plant linking the Friant-Kern Canal with the California Aqueduct, including connection to SWSD groundwater banking facilities. The project’s annual yield will be about 11,000 acre-feet.
Porterville Irrigation District, $737,035 — Porterville Irrigation District plans to build new service pipelines and channels to bring surface supplies to an 1,800 acre in-lieu service area currently relying on groundwater pumping. The project’s annual yield will be about 2,500 acre-feet.
Pixley Irrigation District, $5,000,000 — Pixley Irrigation District, along with Delano-Earlimart Irrigation District, plans to construct a Joint Groundwater Bank initially investigated in a Reconnaissance Study completed in 2008. The project includes 170 acres of new recharge basins, recovery wells, a pump station, and pipeline connecting to the Friant-Kern Canal. This is the first phase of the project identified which could eventually be expanded to include additional recharge and recovery capacity. The project’s annual yield will be about 3,100 acre-feet.