The City of Ventura currently relies on 100% local water sources including surface and groundwater from Lake Casitas, Ventura River, three groundwater basins, and recycled water.
For an annual look at Ventura’s water supply and demand status, see the Comprehensive Water Resources Reports (CWRRs). Council approved the first CWRR in June 2013, which was prepared to provide a short-term balance of water supply and demand, a predictable use of data to serve pending and projected development projects, and to provide recommendations for long term water supply and demand policy.
For long-term resource planning, see the Urban Water Management Plans (UWMPs). The UWMP addresses historic, current, and projected water demands, supplies and conservation programs. The UWMP is published every five years and is consistent with the Water Conservation Act of 2009 (Water Code sections 10608.12 to 10608.64) and the Urban Water Management Planning Act (Water Code sections 10610 to 10656).
Casitas Municipal Water District serves customers in the Casitas district. This area includes Ventura’s westside and midtown, generally west of Mills Road. Ventura Water customers who live in the Casitas District pay an assessment annually through their property taxes. For more information, visit the Casitas' website.
Ventura Water operates groundwater wells and a subsurface diversion that draw water from the Ventura River.
On September 30, 2019, the City of San Buenaventura and Santa Barbara Channelkeeper entered into a settlement agreement in the lawsuit regarding the pumping and diversion of water from the Ventura River Watershed. As part of the settlement, the City agreed to begin a Pilot Program to reduce its pumping and diversion of water from the river when flows drop during dry times to help protect species that depend on the river. The City also agreed to install two monitoring gauges (above and below its Foster Park facilities) to help better evaluate water levels in the river. VR1 is located upstream of the City’s wellfield and VR2 is located in Foster Park just below the subsurface dam. The gauges were installed in early September 2019 and calibration was completed in December 2019.
The stream gauges measure depth directly, and then based on flow and depth curves, provide flow data for each depth measured. Air is pumped from the equipment box through a conduit placed in the river bottom, and sensors measure the pressure required for an air bubble to come out of the pipe. The greater the water depth over the pipe, the more pressure is required. Following installation, a team took discharge measurements in the river, and correlated those flow measurements with water surface elevation. Multiple measurements over a range of flows were used to create a curve which depicts the relationship between flow and depth for the site.
- Data collected from the gauges since installation can be viewed on their Website.
- Go to the “Field Station Access” button at the upper right side of the homepage and enter the following in the Users Login fields:
- Login: ventura
- Password: river
For more information, please visit the Ventura River Watershed Adjudication website.
In addition to wells located on the Ventura River, Ventura Water operates groundwater wells in three groundwater basins: the Oxnard Plain Basin, Mound Basin, and Santa Paula Basin. Our production is managed by existing agencies/agreements and future groundwater supply may be impacted by the Sustainable Groundwater Management Act (SGMA). SGMA was passed by the State in 2014 to improve management of groundwater resources in California. The legislation requires that groundwater sustainability agencies (GSAs) are established for groundwater basins ranked as medium- or high- priority, indicating that the basins are at risk of overdraft and/or a decline in water quality. Once GSAs are formed, Groundwater Sustainability Plans (GSPs) must be adopted and the groundwater basin must achieve sustainability by 2042.
- The Fox Canyon Groundwater Management Agency is named as the GSA for the Oxnard Plain Basin (ranked as high-priority).
- The Mound Basin GSA (ranked medium-priority) meets the third Tuesday of each month. Additional information and meeting materials are available at moundbasingsa.org.
- The Santa Paula Basin is adjudicated and exempt from the GSA process.
- The Upper Ventura River Basin GSA (ranked medium-priority) meets the second Thursday of each month. For more information visit uvrgroundwater.org.
Source: 2015 Urban Water Management Plan