A state judge last week rejected three petitions by environmental groups challenging a 2018 regulation approved by the State Water Board, according to the California Farm Bureau. The East San Joaquin Order added new monitoring and reporting requirements related to groundwater.

The Farm Bureau and other ag groups intervened in the litigation, defending the Central Valley Water Board’s five-year effort to develop the program.

“The court's decision in these three cases is important for irrigated agriculture throughout the state,” said the Farm Bureau’s Kari Fisher.

The East San Joaquin Order set the foundation for the Central Coast Water Board’s draft Ag Order 4.0. That proposal is using its calculation for nitrogen inputs to set a cap on fertilizer applications.