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Water Management Program Information 

The Central Valley Project Improvement Act of 1992 for the first time committed Reclamation to providing substantial amounts of water for environmental management, with stipulations from Congress that this supply should be assured through greater efficiencies in farm and urban use. The CVPIA was a significant building block toward achieving the Bay-Delta Accord and the CALFED program of intergovernmental coordination in Bay-Delta watershed management.

Click on any of the topic panels below to open or close them
Ag & Urban Criteria

2014 Standard Criteria for Evaluating Water Management Plans
The Bureau of Reclamation has revised the criteria for evaluating water conservation plans required by the Central Valley Project Improvement Act of 1992. The act specifies that these criteria are to be used to evaluate plans prepared by Central Valley Project contractors to meet the water conservation requirements of the 1982 Reclamation Reform Act. The plans must meet the criteria established by the Bureau of Reclamation. The act requires revision of the criteria every three years and this was the fifth revision of the criteria.

Water Management Planner - Developed to meet the 2014 Standard Criteria for Evaluating Water Management plans

Refuge Criteria

2010 Refuge Criteria (pdf -65 KB | 508 Compliant/Not VI Compliant)
The Bureau of Reclamation has created the Refuge Criteria in order to provide a common methodology or standard for efficient use of water by Federal Wildlife Refuges, State wildlife management areas and resource conservation Districts that receive water under provisions of the Central Valley Project Improvement Act (CVPIA). Refuges that entered into water supply contracts with Reclamation, as a result of the CVPIA and subsequent Department of the Interior administrative review process (Administrative Proposal), are required to prepare Refuge Water Management Plans using the Refuge Criteria.

Sacramento Valley Regional Water Management Plan
Interactive Graphic - click to access the 123MB document


The Sacramento Valley Regional Water Management Plan (Regional Plan) was prepared by the Sacramento River Settlement Contractors in cooperation with the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation, in accordance with the Regional Criteria for Evaluating Water Management Plans for the Sacramento River Contractors. 

The Regional Plan was developed to provide regional, sub-basin and district specific water use, supply, and facility information to support improved water management.  In addition to implementing the Regional Plan, each participating district or company continues to encourage and implement smaller-scale, local water management activities and improvements.

Program Reports
CalPoly ITRC Evaluation of Small Scale Area Measurement Techniques

One example of research that supports the urban BMPs is the Irrigation Training and Research Center (ITRC) project. In order to implement BMP Number Five, districts will need to measure their irrigated landscape acreage and develop a water budget accordingly. ITRC has tested five different measurement methodologies and the associated technology. Their report includes information about the cost, challenges, and real experience with the different methods.

Contra Costa Water District Landscame Measurement Program

This district conducted an on-the-ground and in-the-air analysis of landscape measurement techniques. They compared the results of high tech remote sensing aerial measurement equipment to as-built drawing scanning and a hand measurement method. The district compared the accuracy and cost of the three different methods. This report complements the work performed by ITRC.

  • Landscape Measurement Program Main and Appendix A (pdf - 1 MB* | Not 508 Compliant/Pre-VI)
  • Summary of the Findings of the Water Shortage/Drought Assistance Survey (pdf - 24 KB | 508 Compliant/Pre-VI)
    Fifty organizations, representing a wide range of Bureau projects and units and including both agricultural and urban water suppliers, were interviewed, either by telephone or face-to-face interviews. The results of this survey are presented here.
  • The Center for Irrigation Technology (CIT) San Joaquin Valley Grower Irrigation Survey (pdf -
    238 KB | Not 508 Compliant/Pre-VI)
    The CIT conducted a survey in an effort to enhance the assistance that growers currently receive with meeting their irrigation needs. This 25 question survey focused on determining current irrigation practices, identifying water management problems, assessing current use of water management resources, and identifying needs to make irrigation improvements. This report contains the findings of the study and provides information regarding the types of technical and financial assistance agencies can provide to assist growers in improving their irrigation management.
Yolo County Resource Conservation District Pilot Program 2001

The Yolo County Resource Conservation District undertook a one-year pilot program funded by the CALFED Water Use Efficiency Program from December 2000 through December 2001. This report contains the results of the study and provides a thorough analysis of the water quality benefits of practices that the District has long promoted.

  • Final Report (pdf - 3.18 MB | Not 508 Compliant/Pre-VI)
  • Appendices (pdf - 4.02 MB | Not 508 Compliant/Pre-VI)
USBR Drought Handbook
Cooperative Water Management Planning information & Study Report

For assistance or detailed information, please contact:
916-978-5232 or e-mail

December 30, 2014