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Emergency pumping project under construction at Cachuma Lake

Randol White - KCBX News
November 2014: A boat ramp at Cachuma sits high and dry as lake levels recede.

A project is in the works to relocate the water pumping barge at Cachuma Lake to accommodate receding lake levels.

The shoreline is reaching historic lows, only seen once before during the drought of the early 1990s.

Several Santa Barbara South Coast communities rely on Cachuma for a portion of their water supplies. Water districts serving Carpinteria, Goleta, Montecito and Santa Barbara—as well as the Santa Ynez Valley—all have a stake in access to this resource.

Janet Gingras is the General Manager of the board that oversees the lake's management. She told KCBX that this project is just now getting underway, but has been under consideration for the past couple of years.

Even when the lake is low, water is released from Cachuma in order to replenish aquifers in the Santa Ynez Valley. That is expected to happen again this summer, according to Gingrass.

Construction on the emergency pumping facility is expected to be completed by late June or early July.