Growing concerns over Nipomo groundwater levels
September 26, 2011
Nipomo’s groundwater basin remains at “potentially severe” water levels which could result in salt water intrusion, according to a recently released report. [SantaMariaTimes]
Following the wet spring of 2010, the Nipomo Mesa Groundwater Basin rebounded slightly following three years of steady decline. And members of the Nipomo Mesa Management Area Technical Group said there has been no seawater intrusion detected.
“We look at this as analogous to a yellow light,” group chairman Robert Miller told attendees on Sept. 15 at a Nipomo High School meeting to discuss the report, the Times said. “We are unable to characterize the condition of our water basin because of a number of uncertainties (regarding) conditions underground.”
Miller noted that despite another wet, rainy season this spring, it appears basin levels have fallen about a foot, while other members of the technical group placed the decline at 4 feet.
That data is slated to be released in next years report.
“It’s too early to call this a trend, but it’s something to be concerned about,” Miller said noting that in 1992 levels dropped during a wet year. “Some areas have seen a significant increase, but some levels have not. But the average has gone down.”
In response to declining water levels, the group recommends implementing the proposed supplemental water project pipeline between Santa Maria and the Mesa, the Santa Maria Times said.
A bone of contention with some Nipomo residents including Bill Petrick who opposes the pipeline contending there is no data in the report to support that recommendation, the Santa Maria Times added.