The absence of a state policy governing the use of underground waters is, in fact, the outstanding weakness in California’s water conservation program.
Carey McWilliams, California: The Great Exception, 1949
To what extent does this still hold today?
It’s not a bug, it’s a feature — well, to the folks with wells.
Yep. Still a problem.
Oh I don’t know. I’d say the state now has lots of policies that at least relate to the use of groundwater. Now something that “governs” the use of groundwater, or to be really brave, “effectively governs” the use of groundwater, that’s a bit harder to find.
Actually, most of the populated groundwater basins are already adjudicated. However, most notably, the Central Valley is not, especially Tulare Basin.