Sunday, February 19, 2017
Exhibit Hall (Hynes Convention Center)
Holly Mayton, University of California, Riverside, Riverside, CA
Background: The 2016 Open and Transparent Water Data Act (California AB 1755) requires the Department of Water Resources (DWR) to establish a statewide integrated water data platform. The purpose of this platform is to integrate existing water and ecological data and serve as a repository of information for completed water transfers and exchanges. Protocols for data sharing, documentation, quality control, and public access regarding this platform are required. In order to successfully meet these requirements by August 2020, a historical review of data management recommendations and methodologies used by various water stakeholders in California was conducted. Methods: A meta-analysis of current and historical data gathering and data sharing systems was performed in conjunction with the California Council on Science and Technology (CCST), with an emphasis on conference and symposia proceedings since the year 2000 containing recommendations for the integration of water data management. Articles published by academic journals, white papers, and comparative policy analyses in the last sixteen years were also included in the meta-analysis. Results: A white paper is in preparation by CCST synthesizing relevant recommendations for the management and accessibility of water data in California. Of the resources evaluated, authors and organizers included local, state, and federal agencies, non-profits/NGOs, and research institutions. The most commonly prescribed actions for improvement of water data management include: an open-access, online database; increased data sharing and collaboration between data users and generators; and normalization of metrics used in environmental water, water supply, and wastewater industries. In addition, common concerns and obstacles were aggregated from the diverse group of stakeholder perspectives. The findings of this study will be disseminated at a workshop hosted by DWR in order to solicit input from water experts and professionals. Conclusions: DWR is preparing a Request for Proposals for the development of a statewide integrated water data platform to be released prior to April 2018. The platform will integrate existing databases from federal, state, and local agencies and academia, provide data on water transfers (price, volume, water right information), and be able to receive both spatial and time series data from various sources. This study confirms the utility of the requirements delineated in AB 1755 for effective water data management and identifies perceived and actual barriers to successful implementation.