Hello Anti-Degradation Coalition –
Quite some time ago, the Environmental Law Foundation drafted a Petition to the State Water Board on behalf of this Coalition. We asked the Board to adopt formal procedures to implement the state and federal Anti-Degradation Policy. (I attached the Petition, dated July 2007)
While the State Water Board has done nothing, the Third Appellate District Court just came out with a decision on November 6, 2012 (attached) requiring the Central Valley Regional Board to comply with the state anti-degradation policy (Resolution 68-16) as it pertains to groundwater in a permit regulating 1,600 dairies in the Central Valley Region.
The decision is the first to apply the anti-degradation policy to California’s groundwater. The Court does a beautiful job detailing what is required by the Regional Board to comply with the anti-degradation policy. While the decision is specific to the particular dairies permit, it’s applicability goes to all discharge permits in California – for both surface and groundwater.
Alan Levine, Coast Action Group Affiliate of Redwood Coast Watersheds Alliance