Central Coast Regional Water Quality Control Board (CCRWQCB)

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Figure 1: California Regional Water Quality Boards [1]


The Central Coast Regional Water Quality Control Board (CCRWQCB) is one of the nine boards that jointly works with the State Water Resources Control Board (SWRCB) to sustain clean and abundant water for the state of California [2]. The CCRWQCB governs water for the Central Coast as one of the nine regions of the state, as seen in Figure 1. Collectively, these water boards aim to protect human use of water, as well as the environment, to ensure sustainability.

State Law

Figure 2: Allocation of duties. Diagram created by Arev Markarian

In 1969 the Porter-Cologne Water Quality Control Act established these nine regional boards as California's principal water quality policy and its regulating bodies, as seen in Figure 2. Under this statute, there are certain responsibilities of the SWRCB that don't overlap with regional boards. The State Water Board allocates funds, guides regional projects and reviews regional decisions. The State Water Board is also in charge of allocating rights of surface water, whereas regional boards are to regulate discharges and distribute National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System permits [3].

Central Coast

The task of protecting and enforcing the many uses of water throughout the economic, residential, and environmental aspects of the region is an ongoing challenge for the CCRWQCB. The Central Coast region protects 378 miles of coastline and 3559 square miles of groundwater basins. The area includes Santa Cruz and the Monterey Peninsula, the Salinas and Santa Maria Valleys, and the Santa Barbara Plains. [2] The Central Coast Regional Board's mission emphasizes enforcement of water quality, and taking different hydrology and topography of the region into consideration when implementing water quality plans [4].


Widespread toxicity in surface waters, pollutant loading to groundwater, and degradation of watersheds are three key factors that the Central Coast region is facing. The CCRWQCB is essential to setting standards and making critical decisions to address these issues. [5]. The Central Coast Water Board has developed a "Vision of Healthy Watersheds" to protect and enhance the Central Coast watersheds in order to promote healthy and sustainable water that meets regional standards. [5] The vision establishes and structures work towards promoting the highest quality water standards and anticipates challenges and opportunities in water quality that would position the agency to respond quickly to unexpected issues that may arise. [5] </ref>



Each Regional Board has part-time members appointed by the Governor per district, and confirmed by the Senate. Each member is appointed for a four year term. These are the seven current CCRWQCB members as of 2018 who meet once a month either in San Luis Obispo, Santa Barbara, Watsonville, or Salinas.

  • Dr. Jean-Pierre Wolff (Chair)
  • Dr. Monica S. Hunter (Vice Chair)
  • Karina Cervantez
  • Bruce Delgado (Mayor of City of Marina)
  • Jane Gray
  • Michael Johnston
  • Jeffrey Young

Goals and Associated Projects

CCRWQCB has established short-term, water quality goals that are beneficial to the health of its customers. [6]. By the year 2025, these goals include:

  • 80% of the aquatic habitat is healthy, and the remaining 20% is exhibiting positive trends towards reaching a sustainable and healthy standard
  • 80% of lands located within a watershed will be properly managed to maintain essential watershed functions. The remaining 20% will show positive trends in key watershed perspectives
  • 80% of groundwater in the Central Coast region will be clean, and the remaining 20% will exhibit positive trends towards key parameters of water quality in the Central Coast region

In order to reach these goals, the CCRWQCB has implemented many projects to control water quality in the Central Coast including but not limited to:



  1. / Newman, Julie. 2012. "New" Ag Waivers from two regional water quality control boards. UC Nursery and Floriculture Alliance.
  2. 2.0 2.1 / CWB (California Water Board). About The Water Board.
  3. / State of California. Federal, State, and Local Laws, Policy and Regulations. California Environmental Protection Agency. State Water Resources Control Board.
  4. / CWB (California Water Board). Central Coast Regional Board: About Us.
  5. 5.0 5.1 5.2 / Adams. LS. CRWQCB (California Regional Water Quality Control Board). Water Board Role in the Central Coast Region. California Environmental Protection Agency.
  6. / CWB (California Water Board). Healthy Watersheds - A Vision for the Future.