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Court limits landmark tribal groundwater case

Jeremy P. Jacobs, E&E News reporter April 24, 2019

Part of the Agua Caliente Band of Cahuilla Indians reservation in California. 

A California court has sided with a Southern California water district in a high-stakes case with a Native American tribe over access to groundwater.
The ruling follows a 2017 decision that found the Agua Caliente Band of Cahuilla Indians had reserved water rights to groundwater under its lands.
But federal Judge Jesus Bernal said the nearby Coachella Valley Water District and Desert Water Agency have not harmed the tribe with their groundwater pumping because the reservation has sufficient water for its needs.


The tribe, Bernal wrote, has not shown it has suffered any sort of water shortage due to the district's management of the aquifer and thus does not have standing to bring its claims.

Complete article: Court limits landmark tribal groundwater case