CV-SALTS Program

Central Valley Salinity Alternatives for Long-Term Sustainability (CV-SALTS)

Overview of the CV-SALTS Program

Elevated salinity and nitrates in surface water and groundwater are increasing problems affecting much of California, other western states, and arid regions throughout the world. In California, as surface and groundwater supplies become scarcer, and as wastewater streams become more concentrated, salinity and nitrate impairments are occurring with greater frequency and magnitude.

In 2006, the Central Valley Water Board, the State Water Board, and stakeholders began a joint effort to address salinity and nitrate problems in California’s Central Valley and adopt long-term solutions that will lead to enhanced water quality and economic sustainability. Central Valley Salinity Alternatives for Long-Term Sustainability (CV-SALTS) is a collaborative basin planning effort aimed at developing and implementing a comprehensive salinity and nitrate management program. The goal of CV-SALTS is to maintain a healthy environment and a good quality of life for all Californians by protecting our most essential and vulnerable resource: WATER.

In July 2008, the Central Valley Salinity Coalition (CVSC) was formed.  CVSC represents stakeholder groups working with the Board in the CV-SALTS effort.  Its purpose is to organize, facilitate and fund efforts needed to fulfill the goals of CV-SALTS.  CVSC coordinates the meetings of the CV-SALTS committees, maintains an independent web site, and manages the projects originating from this effort.  Information and materials regarding the stakeholder committees and other activity, including the meeting schedule, are posted on their website: www.cvsalinity.org

Archives of initial CV-SALTS activities and meetings (2006-2008) will be posted on this site until further notice.

In January 2017, CV-SALTS developed and submitted a Central Valley-wide Salt and Nitrate Management Plan to the Central Valley Water Board. In March 2017, the Board adopted a resolution accepting the Salt and Nitrate Management and Plan (SNMP) and directing Board staff to initiate Basin Plan Amendments to incorporate recommendations from the SNMP into the Basin Plans.

In January 2018, a Board workshop was held to discuss the proposed Basin Plan Amendments to incorporate a Central Valley-wide Salt and Nitrate Control Program. The Central Valley Water Board adopted the proposed amendments in May 2018.

The Salt and Nitrate Control Program basin plan amendment is currently going through the State Water Board adoption process and will be followed with the OAL and U.S. EPA (as appropriate) adoption processes.

Salt and Nitrate Control Program Basin Plan Amendment

State Water Board Action

  • Currently in the process of transmitting Resolution R5-2018-0034 to State Water Resources Control Board.

Central Valley Water Board Action

Other Related CV-SALTS Basin Plan Amendments

  • San Joaquin River Upstream of Vernalis Salt and Boron Basin Plan Amendment
    An Amendment to the Water Quality Control Plan for the Sacramento River and San Joaquin River Basins to adopt Water Quality Objectives for the Lower San Joaquin River upstream of the Airport Way Bridge near Vernalis to the mouth of the Merced River. was adopted at the 9 June 2017 Central Valley Water Board Hearing. The amendment was approved by the State Water Board on 9 January 2018 and by the Office of Administrative Law on 19 April 2018. The amendment is currently pending U.S. EPA approval.

  • Region-wide MUN Evaluation Process Basin Plan Amendment
    An Amendment to the Water Quality Control Plans for the Sacramento River and San Joaquin River Basins and the Tulare Lake Basin to Incorporate a Process into the Basin Plans for Determining Appropriate Designation and Level of Protection of Municipal and Domestic Supply (MUN) in Agriculturally Dominated Water Bodies. was adopted at the 11 August 2017 Central Valley Water Board Hearing. The amendment is scheduled for a State Water Board Hearing on 10 July 2018. The deadline for written comments was 13 November 2017.

  • Tulare Lakebed MUN and AGR Beneficial Use Evaluation Amendment
    An Amendment to the Water Quality Control Plan for the Tulare Lake Basin to Remove the Municipal and Domestic Supply (MUN) and Agricultural Supply (AGR) Beneficial Uses Within a Designated Horizontal and Vertical Portion of the Tulare Lake Bed was adopted at the 6 April 2017 Central Valley Water Board Hearing. The amendment was approved by the State Water Board on 6 September 2017 and by the Office of Administrative Law on 26 December 2017, the effective date of the Basin Plan Amendment.

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Facts and Information