For the past year and a half, Sitka and the Environmental Defense Fund (EDF) have been working with water managers and landowners in the Rosedale-Rio Bravo Water Storage District (Rosedale) to create the first open-source water accounting and trading platform in California’s Central Valley. From the start, the project team envisioned a platform that can be expanded to water districts across California and throughout the country.
With this goal in mind, the team set about to build the platform with the assistance of project partners Olsson and WestWater Research. The recently unveiled platform enables water managers and farmers to manage their irrigation practices with a greater understanding of their water budget, demonstrate the viability of water trading water via an online marketplace, and minimize undesirable results using an integrated groundwater modeling decision support tool.
My favorite part of this project was working directly with landowners and producers in the Rosedale service district during a series of hands-on workshops. We conducted mock trading sessions to understand how real users would engage with the platform and adapted the platform based on their feedback. Learning from real users allowed Sitka to adapt the platform to be approachable to both independent farmers and major agri-businesses. The users were able to conduct trades and explore how they might leverage a water marketplace to maximize their profits while increasing the sustainability of their water usage.
If you’d like to learn more about this project, please visit the Water Accounting content on our website where you can learn more about the platform, read a Q&A with Rosedale’s General Manager, register for an informative webinar on October 28th, explore the StoryMap, and download our featured case study.
We are also offering personalized demos of the platform. If interested, please complete this short form, and we will follow up to schedule.