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Project: Real-Time Management of Irrigation Return Flows to Benefit Sustainable San Joaquin River Flow and Water Quality

Description: This Project will develop long-term surface and subsurface drainage management strategies to protect and sustain the health of the San Joaquin River and San Joaquin River Basin. Several means to reduce the salt and selenium loads from subsurface drainage into the San Joaquin River are currently in implementation including salt and selenium TMDL’s for the San Joaquin Basin and real-time drainage management to provide constant monitoring of the San Joaquin River’s water quality and flow. Additionally, models such as WARMF-SJR are a vital tool in assessing water quality and simulating river flows. However, there are limitations with this model as discovered recently, namely the lack of critical flow and EC monitoring at the confluence of the Stanislaus and Tuolumne Rivers, and the lack of real-time accessible data on direct diversions. This Project will involve attainting the appropriate permits to design and install water quality and flow monitoring stations along each tributary and at a minimum of two of the three major river diverters. The additional data can then be incorporated into the re-calibrated WARMF-SJR model and provide real-time forecasts of the San Joaquin River assimilative capacity and guide surface and subsurface discharge events. The Project will also rehabilitate and improve established west-side monitoring stations along the San Joaquin River that discharge a combination of surface and subsurface drainage directly to the River.

Reference Number: 3860-P84-1549

Implemented By: San Joaquin Valley Drainage Authority

Objective: Successful implementation of the concept of real-time salinity management requires Basin-wide monitoring of key inflows to and diversions from the San Joaquin River, and sharing of this real-time information and accurate simulation modeling of the Basin that provide forecasts of River assimilative capacity. The objective of the project is to realize the potential benefits of real-time salinity management by overcoming current obstacles.

Type: Restoration, Monitoring, Water Management, Technical Assistance

Total Cost: $855,000.00

Project Status: Project Implementation

On Time?: Yes    Within Scope?: Yes    Within Budget?: Yes

Estimated Completion: 12/31/2022    Actual Completion:

Associated Counties: Fresno

Located In Disadvantaged Community: No Located In Severely Disadvantaged Community: No

Contribution SourcesContribution DateContribution Amount
Prop. 84, Delta Water Quality Program6/7/2018$855,000.00

Project MetricMetric TopicQuantityUnit
Water Management   
Technical Assistance   


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