Santa Ana Regional Water Quality Control Board
"Our mission is to preserve, enhance and restore the quality of California's water resources, and ensure their proper allocation and efficient use for the benefit of present and future generations."


The Santa Ana Region continues to be one of the most rapidly growing areas of the State. While the region is geographically the smallest (nearly 3,000 square miles), it boasts one of the largest populations (almost five million people). Extensive groundwater basins underlie much of the region, but local recharge provides only a fraction of the area's water needs, which are primarily met by imported water. The Santa Ana River, the region's main surface water body, transports more than 125 million gallons per day of reclaimed water from Riverside and San Bernardino Counties for recharge into the Orange County Groundwater Basin. This satisfies approximately 40 percent of the county's water demand. This semiarid region is known for its temperate climate and relatively low rainfall -- about 15 inches per year. The Regional Board's office is located in Riverside.


  • Reduce salts and nutrients in manure and wash water from dairy operations overlying the Chino Groundwater Basin that have severely degraded groundwater quality and threaten downstream water quality.
  • Manage nonpoint sources of nutrients, silt, bacteria, metals, PCBs and the banned pesticide DDT that pose serious threats to Newport Bay.
  • Control contaminated groundwater, which underlies many areas of the region, resulting from historic discharges of chlorinated solvents.
  • Manage nonpoint sources of pathogens that continue to affect the quality of the Santa Ana River, thus rendering the river unsuitable for swimming.


  • Implemented the Watershed Management Initiative to develop comprehensive watershed management plans for the region's two highest priority watersheds, the Newport Bay Watershed and the Chino Basin Watershed Management Area.
  • Directed those wastewater treatment plants that discharge into the Santa Ana River to comply with pollution treatment levels to protect all beneficial uses.
  • Participated in the development of a desalination project for the lower Chino groundwater basin to intercept and desalt poor quality groundwater and thus protect downstream water supplies.
  • Coordinated major stake holders in the watershed to review the total dissolved solids and nitrogen water quality objectives of the Santa Ana Basin, develop a regulatory strategy to protect water quality and optimize water resources development.


Telephone Staff Directory with email links

Contact Santa Ana Regional Water Quality Control Board

Kurt Berchtold
3737 Main Street
Suite 500
Riverside, California  92501-3339
Phone: (951) 782-4130
Fax: (951) 781-6288


Service Area

Services provided in:
  • Orange County, California
  • Riverside County, California
  • San Bernardino County, California

To request additions or corrections to this entry email the Administrator
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Santa Ana River Watershed Program
The Santa Ana Watershed Association develops and implements programs that enhance and sustain the natural resources of the river for wildlife and people.