Water Transfers

Water transfers are an effective water management tool which provide flexibility in the use of water in California and are often used to meet dry-year demands. Water transfers are generally an arrangement between two parties, one with surplus water supply (seller) and one in need of additional water (buyer). The majority of water transfers are short-term which are in effect for less than one year. The seller can make a portion of their surface water supply available through one of the following actions: cropland idling/crop shifting, groundwater substitution, water conservation, and reservoir release. The water rights team provides technical support to irrigation districts or individuals participating in water transfers. This support includes obtaining regulatory approval, evaluation of quantities made available for the water transfer, groundwater monitoring throughout a groundwater substitution transfer, and preparation of summary reports following transfer completion.