The Santa Ana River Conservation and Conjunctive Use Program (SARCCUP) is a watershed-scale collaborative program designed to improve the Santa Ana River watershed’s water supply resiliency and reliability by increasing available dry-year yield from local groundwater basins. SARCCUP consists of multiple projects that address one or more of the following main program elements: 1) Conjunctive Use Program for the watershed; 2) Invasive weed removal and habitat creation/restoration; and 3) Water use efficiency and water conservation measures. “Conjunctive use” refers to coordinating the management of surface water and groundwater to improve the overall reliability of water supply (Pacific Institute, 2011). The SARCCUP Conjunctive Use Program may include existing and new facilities that would allow for surface water to be recharged and stored in local groundwater basins during wet years and then pumped during dry periods, droughts or other emergency conditions.
Five regional water agencies in the Santa Ana River watershed have partnered to develop this watershed-wide program (“partner agencies”): Eastern Municipal Water District (EMWD), Inland Empire Utilities Agency (IEUA), Orange County Water District (OCWD), San Bernardino Valley Municipal Water District (SBVMWD), and Western Municipal Water District (WMWD). The Draft Joint Environmental Impact Report has been prepared and published for the potential SARCCUP projects.