Education and Outreach
Education and Outreach | Environmental Justice | Small Domestic Wastewater Dischargers and Disadvantaged Communities | GeoTracker Database Information | GAMA - Groundwater Ambient Monitoring & Assessment Program | Public Reports | Paperless Office Information | Questions or Comments | Additional Regional Water Board Contact Information
The Colorado River Basin Regional Water Quality Control Board believes that community outreach and environmental education is an important part of achieving our mission. Several programs involving water education have been successfully facilitated, including; Project WET, Citizen's Water Quality Monitoring and classroom visits.
The goal of Project WET (Water Education for Teachers) is to promote the awareness, appreciation, and knowledge of California's water resources. This seminar is fun, hands-on, action-packed, and informative. WET is for anyone interested in natural resources and environmental education and is especially useful for public and private school teachers in grades K-12. Project WET is perfect for integrating science and math. The seminar offers educators exciting new activities to use in teaching science, math, language arts, social studies, and environmental studies. Participants will be trained in the basics of how to use Project WET materials as well as in facilitation and organizational skills. Each seminar participant will receive a copy of the Project WET Curriculum and Activity Grade Book. California Project WET is a project of the Water Education Foundation and is funded by a grant from the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation, Mid-Pacific Region.
Water Quality Monitoring by Citizens offers the opportunity to involve the public and increase understanding of the roles of citizens and government agencies in protecting the State's waters. Citizen participation is instrumental to protect lakes, streams, and coastal ocean waters in your community. Citizen monitors collect water quality data, evaluate fish habitat, perform bird counts, and document watershed health. Training workshops are available. To read more about Citizen Water Quality Monitoring and/or California's Clean Water Team please see http://www.waterboards.ca.gov/water_issues/programs/swamp/cwt_volunteer.shtml.
Other Outreach Web Sites
- School Outreach - State Water Board information for Kids, Students, Teachers and Educators
- Environmental Justice Outreach - State Water Board information on Environmental Justice
- Tribal Outreach - State Water Board information on Tribal Outreach
- Municipal Outreach - State Water Board information on Municipal Outreach
- Business and Industry - State Water Board information on Business and Industry Outreach
- USEPA Pollution Prevention - United States Environmental Protection Agency Region 9 Pollution Prevention Outreach
- California Department of Fish and Wildlife (CDFW) - CDFW learning information for education programs, outreach campaigns and reference material.
Statewide and Regional Water Quality Issues
- Salton Sea Authority - The Salton Sea Authority is a Joint Powers Authority (JPA) responsible for overseeing the comprehensive restoration of the Salton Sea.
- International Boundary and Water Commission (United States and Mexico) - The U.S. Section of the International Boundary and Water Commission (USIBWC) is a federal government agency and the U.S. component of the International Boundary and Water Commission (IBWC), which applies the boundary and water treaties of the United States and Mexico and settles differences that may arise in their application. IBWC mission is to provide binational solutions to issues that arise during the application of United States - Mexico treaties regarding boundary demarcation, national ownership of waters, sanitation, water quality, and flood control in the border region.
- Drought Issues - State Water Board information on drought year water actions.
- Groundwater Issues - State Water Board information on groundwater workplan.
- Surface Water Quality Assessment - The Federal Clean Water Act (CWA) gives States the primary responsibility for protecting and restoring surface water quality.
- Welcome to My Water Quality This web portal, supported by a wide variety of public and private organizations, presents California water quality monitoring data and assessment information that may be viewed across space and time.
- Colorado River Basin Plan (Water Quality Control Plan) - The water quality control plan has three components: beneficial uses which are to be protected, water quality objectives which protect those uses, and an implementation plan which accomplishes those objectives.
The State Water Resources Control Board/Regional Water Quality Control Boards (the Water Boards) are establishing an Environmental Justice (EJ) Program to promote and ensure public outreach, participation and education regarding meetings, hearings and activities for all Californians. Through an established policy, the Water Boards will provide a transparent process for communities, local governments, Tribes and any interested group to learn of and participate in hearings, decisions and actions.
Environmental Justice is defined by California statute as "The fair treatment of people of all races, cultures, and incomes with respect to the development, adoption, implementation, and enforcement of all environmental laws, regulations, and policies."
The Water Boards have identified an EJ Coordinator whose tasks include: Assisting the California Environmental Protection Agency (Cal/EPA) in establishing their EJ Program; conduct research on best practices for developing and implementing the Water Board's EJ Program; conduct training and develop informational material on EJ for all Board appointees, management, and staff; review and incorporate relevant legislation to the EJ Program; provide assistance and guidance to the Executive Director relative to the Cal/EPA Public Advisory Committee on EJ events and activities; and incorporate the Water Board's bilingual program to ensure full participation by all Californians.
Consistent with legislative mandates, the Water Board's EJ Program goals include:
- Integrating EJ considerations into the development, adoption, implementation and enforcement of Board decisions, regulations and policies.
- Promoting meaningful public participation and community capacity building to allow communities to be effective participants in Board decision-making processes.
- Working with the Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment to improve research and data collection in communities of color and low-income populations.
- Ensuring effective cross-media coordination and accountability when addressing environmental justice issues.
Should you have additional questions or concerns about the EJ Program, please contact the EJ Coordinator at (916) 341-5501.
- State Water Board Environmental Justice - State Water Board information on links to USEPA, CalEPA and California Community Based Organizations
- Imperial Valley Environmental Report (IVAN Imperial) - A community organization that protects the environment and well-being of residents in Imperial County, California.
- Coachella Valley Environmental Report (IVAN –EVC) - The Eastern Coachella Valley Environmental Justice Enforcement Taskforce aims to protect the environment and most importantly the well-being of residents in the Eastern Coachella Valley.
- Environmental Justice Contacts - CalEPA list of Environmental Justice Contacts.
Domestic wastewater discharges below 10,000 gallons per day (gpd) are considered small and are regulated under the Waste Discharge Requirements (WDRs) Program (sometimes also referred to as the "Non Chapter 15 (Non 15) Program") which regulates point discharges that are exempt pursuant to Subsection 20090 of Title 27 and not subject to the Federal Water Pollution Control Act. The State and Regional Water Boards have developed general orders to facilitate enrollment:
- State Water Board Order WQ 2014-0153-DWQ, General Waste Discharge Requirements for Small Domestic Wastewater Treatment Systems - Only Small Domestic Systems, with a monthly average flow rate of 100,000 gallons per day (gpd) or less, that discharge to land are eligible for coverage under this General Order.
- Regional Water Board Order 97-500 for On-site Subsurface Wastewater Disposal Systems for Mobile Home and Recreational Vehicle Parks and Other Similar Facilities - This Board Order of general waste discharge requirements is designed for on-site subsurface wastewater disposal systems of mobile home and recreational vehicle parks, and other similar facilities such as: shopping centers, restaurants, residential developments, schools, camps and other commercial facilities.
- Notice of Intent
- On-site Wastewater Treatment System (Engineers Report) - The report must be prepared by either a California registered civil engineer or geologist (as the circumstances warrant) experienced in the design of wastewater treatment and disposal systems and hydrological investigations to make clear how an existing or proposed system, will be adequately protective of areal ground and surface water quality.
The State Water Board has contracts in place with Rural Community Assistance Corporation (RCAC), California Rural Water Association (CRWA), and Self Help Enterprises (SHE) to provide technical assistance related to drinking water and wastewater. Eligible activities may include, but are not limited to:
- Prepare financial assistance applications;
- Compliance audits and troubleshooting to address permit violations or improve operations;
- Review proposed project alternatives to assist in identifying low-cost, sustainable approaches;
- Planning and budgets, including capital improvement planning;
- Community outreach, awareness; and education, especially with rgard to rate setting and Proposition 218
- Rural Community Assistance Corporation (RCAC)
- California Rural Water Association (CRWA)
- Self Help Enterprises (SHE)
- Federal Funding Sources for Small Community Wastewater Systems - USEPA web site for possible funding sources to assist small, rural communities.
- State Water Board Financial Assistance Funding - Grants and Loans - The Division of Financial Assistance (DFA) administers the implementation of the State Water Resources Control Board's (State Water Board) financial assistance programs, that include loan and grant funding for construction of municipal sewage and water recycling facilities, etc.
- Small Community Wastewater Strategy - The Small Community Wastewater Strategy (Strategy) is referenced in State Water Resources Control Board (State Water Board) Resolution No. 2008-0048, which promotes strategies to assist small and/or disadvantaged communities with wastewater needs. This site provides information regarding the State Water Board's ongoing efforts to support these communities.
Other Technical Documents for Small Domestic Wastewater Dischargers
- National Environmental Services Center (Wastewater) - The National Small Flows Clearinghouse (NSFC) was funded by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to help America's small communities and individuals solve their wastewater problems through objective information about onsite wastewater collection and treatment systems.
- North Carolina State University (NC SU) Water Quality Group - Water, Soil and Hydro-Environmental Decision Support System Septic Tank Systems.
- USEPA Technology Fact Sheets for Decentralized Systems - EPA has developed a series of fact sheets on alternative onsite wastewater technologies, such as aerobic treatment, recirculating sand filters, and mound systems.
- Water Quality Control Policy for Siting, Design, Operation and Maintenance of Onsite Wastewater Treatment Systems (OWTS Policy) - State Water Board has provided information for Onsite Wastewater Treatment Systems.
The GeoTracker data warehouse and geographic information system (GIS) provides online access to environmental data. It is used to plot UST site and monitoring well locations and track regulatory information about UST facilities, Spills, Leaks, Investigations, and Cleanup (SLIC) sites, and public drinking water wells, and in the future will include other types of cleanup and investigation sites, including Department of Defense (DoD), Landfill, and Aboveground Storage Tank facilities. GeoTracker uses commercially available software to allow users, including the public, to access data over the Internet. Case information can be graphically displayed as a layer on GeoTracker, includes highways and roads, topographic maps, surface water boundaries, watershed boundaries, groundwater basins, and hydrologic vulnerability areas by entering a site address, partial site address, or site name. Legislation which became effective on September 1, 2001 requires the submission of electronic laboratory data.
GeoTracker GAMA is an online groundwater information system that gives you access to water quality data and connects you to groundwater basics and protection information. This online database integrates groundwater quality data from multiple sources, which are searchable by chemical or location with results displayed on an interactive Google maps interface.
The following links provide public information that is available.
- State Water Board Public Records Center
- Region 7 Public Records Center
- Data and Databases
- GeoTracker GAMA
The Regional Water Board is implementing a Paperless Office system to reduce our paper use, increase efficiency and provide a more effective way for our staff, the public and interested parties to view water quality documents in electronic form.
Effective April 1, 2014, please provide all regulatory documents, submissions, materials, data, and correspondence via email or on disk (CD-ROM or CD) in a Portable Document Format (PDF) file in lieu of paper-sourced documents. Documents submitted through GeoTracker are not required to be re-submitted to our paperless office mailbox:
- Regional Water Board Environmental Justice Coordinator:
Maria Davydova, Environmental Scientist
Telephone: (760) 776-8947