New report on groundwater markets

Michael Kiparsky
June 26, 2017

Trading Sustainably: Critical Considerations for Local Groundwater Markets Under the Sustainable Groundwater Management Act
The Center for Law, Energy & the Environment at UC Berkeley School of Law

California’s Sustainable Groundwater Management Act (SGMA) potentially opens the door for local groundwater markets. However, it does not provide guidance about when such markets might be useful and appropriate. 

While carefully designed and implemented markets could help achieve sustainability goals in some areas, success is not a foregone conclusion and careful planning will be needed to avoid unintended consequences. Our report identifies a set of considerations for evaluating whether and under what conditions groundwater trading might contribute to sustainably managing a particular groundwater basin. 

The full report and executive summary are available at

Nell Green Nylen, Senior Research Fellow, Wheeler Water Institute at CLEE
Michael Kiparsky, Director, Wheeler Water Institute at CLEE
Kelly Archer, Research Assistant, Wheeler Water Institute at CLEE
Kurt Schnier, Professor of Economics, UC Merced
Holly Doremus, Professor, UC Berkeley School of Law, and Co-Faculty Director of CLEE