July 2018

New Issue Brief
Innovative incentives for groundwater recharge 

Increasing recharge of aquifers will be a crucial component for achieving groundwater sustainability in California. A key challenge lies in creating incentives that will motivate landowners, tenants, and other stakeholders to develop recharge projects.   
Recharge Net Metering (ReNeM) is a strategy that encourages recharge by offsetting costs of distributed water collection and infiltration systems. Participants benefit directly through the rebate program, while helping to improve and sustain the supply and quality of groundwater for themselves, other resource users, and regional aquatic systems.
On its surface, ReNeM is similar to established approaches like groundwater banking. But the nature of the incentives are profoundly different, with potentially important implications. ReNeM is inspired by Net Energy Metering, which has encouraged broad adoption of rooftop solar panels by balancing credits for excess onsite electricity production with charges for use. In a similar way, ReNeM rebates link groundwater use to individual activities that benefit the common resource.

Our Issue Brief presents a concise conceptual description of ReNeM, as well as a brief account of its first implementation as a pilot program in the Pajaro Valley of California. Our USDA- and UC Water-funded research on ReNeM is ongoing, so watch for more forthcoming products.


Comparing Groundwater Banking and ReNeM


Access the Issue Brief here  or contact Mike Kiparsky for more information .

Faculty + Staff
In the News

Jordan Diamond was appointed by Governor Brown to the California Ocean Protection Council where she will help to coordinate ocean conservation and management efforts among the various involved agencies.

Nell Green Nylen discusses the potential benefits of small water system consolidations in California, as well as the tricky process of implementing them in Water Deeply.

Discussing LA's movement toward sustainable water management with WIRED, Mike Kiparsky explains that "Diversification is important for water management in the same way that it's important for your financial portfolio."

Ethan Elkind tells the San Diego Union-Tribune that "what's really contributing to gentrification is the lack of new housing being built in general regardless of location."
Recent Symposium
Insuring California in a Changing Climate 
Climate change poses risks to California's economy, residents, infrastructure, cities, and natural resources. The insurance industry, which exists to protect governments, individuals, and businesses from the most severe risks, will necessarily play a role in efforts to minimize the harmful impacts of a changing climate.  
On June 13, we convened insurance regulators, industry leaders, policymakers, scientists, and nonprofit researchers for a symposium seeking to better understand how the industry can and will adapt to these new and increased risks.
California Insurance Commissioner Dave Jones delivered a keynote address on California's leading efforts to protect consumers, promote responsible investment and disclosure, and increase industry and regulator understanding of climate risk nationwide. 

See the symposium page for background materials or contact Ted Lamm for more information.
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