Nipomo Mesa water levels plunge

July 7, 2013

water2The level of water in the Nipomo Mesa plunged 25 percent in one year to its lowest level since 1975, according to a report by the Nipomo Mesa Management Area Technical Group. [AdobePress]

According to the Key Wells Index report released last week, the levels are nearly at the point where voluntary conservation measures implemented in 2007 could become mandatory. The group said it based the report on measurements taken at eight “key wells” across the Mesa.

The reported results are very similar to a Nipomo Community Services District consultant’s report released in April that showed the amount of water stored in the basin dropped by 25 percent in a year. The April report noted that the amount of water being pumped from the basin is greater than that returned through rainfall and other sources.

Both reports recommend building a pipeline as soon as possible.

In May 2012, Nipomo-area property owners voted against a plan to fund the construction of a $26 million pipeline by raising property taxes through an assessment district.

A year later in May 2013, NCSD Board members voted unanimously for a plan to borrow an additional $4 million for the construction of a water pipeline from Santa Maria, shortly after a lawsuit was filed contesting drawing the money from a reserve fund.

Opponents of drawing money from the reserve for the pipeline claim Nipomo officials are trying to resurrect the same project without approval from ratepayers.




  1. photocal says:

    Sounds like another Paso Robles in the making. , with poor water quality and rationing… but……..Miles and miles of new vineyards going into the North County area. Really… No water ?

    (4) 4 Total Votes - 4 up - 0 down
  2. msminiver says:

    So it would be safe to assume that real estate on the Mesa is now worthless. No water – no life

    (3) 5 Total Votes - 4 up - 1 down
    • obispan says:

      Hey, shut up. There’s still money to be made. “Sustainability” is a code word for communism. If you did not have the foresight to develop your land or partner with developers, tough, well let’s say “cookies” for the sake of decorum. It’s ALL about $$$$$ and water, if you have enough of one you’ll have enough of the other, if not, it’s your own fault. Ask the north county residents with dry wells who get nothing but lip-service from the county (Frank Meacham, Debbie Arnold) that also preaches that we must “work cooperatively” to (not) address the problem and not go to court. They’ve already made it plain that tourism and development are their primary interests. If you plan on continuing to live here and don’t own a winery or are a developer, court is all you have. Better lawyer up, the wineries and developers have.

      (0) 2 Total Votes - 1 up - 1 down
      • kettle says:

        obispan says: ” “Sustainability” is a code word for communism.”

        No it’s not, but we can pretend if that is what you are into.

        (2) 2 Total Votes - 2 up - 0 down
  3. r0y says:

    I do not trust government statistics, and I would NEVER trust data that pertains to water or any development-related thing. Too many people have too much to gain when water is involved (whether the plan is to use it or not use it).

    I’d dig into the people who did the “study” and see what’s cookin’ before I would give that report any credibility. Then again, when I was growing up, we were supposed to be out of oil by now AND well on our way into a new ice age. All the reports and statistics proved it, too.

    (-5) 13 Total Votes - 4 up - 9 down
    • Slowerfaster says:

      OH…crap sandwich ! You don’t trust anything !

      Maybe your nose, but that’s doubtful.

      (1) 11 Total Votes - 6 up - 5 down
  4. choprzrul says:

    Combining these water problems with air quality problems (both man made and naturally occuring) leads me to believe that human occupancy of the mesa should be banned. Habitation simply does not make sense and the entire area should become a nature preserve.

    Water & air quality problem solved.

    (5) 21 Total Votes - 13 up - 8 down
    • Paso_Guy says:

      so you believe that man is bad and maybe a mass suicide would solve mother earth’s problems?

      (10) 18 Total Votes - 14 up - 4 down
    • r0y says:

      lol, you’re so silly sometimes.

      (2) 2 Total Votes - 2 up - 0 down
      • choprzrul says:

        Nah, just want to get rid of all of the people living on the mesa so that they can’t complain about the blowing sand. If it takes a water crisis to get rid of them, so be it.

        Let the wind blow and the trees grow. Now to head to the garage to work on the quad so that I can ride the dunes!

        (0) 2 Total Votes - 1 up - 1 down
    • Pelican1 says:

      It seems to me that communities like Palm Desert, Palm Springs, and Las Vegas once the same argument.
      Don’t you wish you had purchased said property back in the day?

      (1) 1 Total Votes - 1 up - 0 down
  5. Slowerfaster says:

    A pipeline is only a band-aid fix.
    What is needed for a long term solution is a desalinization plant. It could be designed incorporating sustainable and green hydro/wave technologies that would generate electricity, too.
    The big questions would be: How much would it cost ? Where would the funding come from ?, and Where would it be built ?

    (6) 18 Total Votes - 12 up - 6 down
    • doggin says:

      Desal plant? How will you squeeze salt from the turds that Oceano’s sewage dumps into the ocean just north of Nipomo every day?

      (1) 11 Total Votes - 6 up - 5 down
    • Justducky says:

      The bigger question would be: How would you get the Coastal Commission to approve it and how many centuries would that take?

      Would be nice if the only problem was money and where. We could do it then!

      (6) 8 Total Votes - 7 up - 1 down
      • Slowerfaster says:

        My, what limited thinking !
        In 2009, 14,451 desal plants operated worldwide …many in countries of much lesser PCI and greater density than the almighty USA.
        Oh …we do have some here, too.

        The technology is available, and it’s work that needs done.
        It’s the ‘chicken little’s’ and NIMBY’s that refuse to adapt that clogs progress.

        OR, Nipomo and soon many other coastal communities will be buying bottled water at $2/gallon or more and taking salt baths.

        (-4) 8 Total Votes - 2 up - 6 down
        • Justducky says:

          Powerful, optimistic thinking, Slower. You can be in charge of presenting your arguments to the Coastal Commission. Let us all know when you will be performing. I, for one, won’t want to miss this display of brilliance.

          (1) 1 Total Votes - 1 up - 0 down
    • choprzrul says:

      Desal will never fly.

      The must build a “Natural Sea Salt Production Plant” that has pure water as a byproduct. Solar panels and wind generators so that it is ‘green’ and the coastal commission will give it their blessing.

      (-2) 6 Total Votes - 2 up - 4 down
    • analyticone says:

      And the Coastal Commission would never approve it.

      (3) 3 Total Votes - 3 up - 0 down

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