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Project: California Environmental Data Exchange Network (CEDEN)

Background and Objectives

The State Water Resources Control Board (SWRCB) primarily coordinates statewide surface water quality monitoring efforts through the Surface Water Ambient Monitoring Program (SWAMP). A number of other monitoring programs, though, such as the Southern California Stormwater Monitoring Coalition (SMC) and monitoring by nongovernmental organizations, also produce data that can potentially be used by the State in regulatory reporting and decision-making. Reports on the status of California’s water quality required by the US Environmental Protection Agency (e.g., the 303(d) list of impaired water bodies) provide a scientific basis for management priorities and regulatory actions. Thus, the ability to integrate all available data in a quality-controlled manner makes a significant difference in the state’s ability to accurately assess statewide water quality.

A major ongoing challenge of making statewide assessments is to collate and standardize the format of various data sets. These data sets, which may number in the hundreds, often exist in multiple formats with differing capabilities for access, documentation, export, and analysis. To overcome these data standardization challenges, the SWRCB supports data transfer to the centralized California Environmental Data Exchange Network (CEDEN). SCCWRP was selected as the Southern California Regional Data Center (one of four regional centers throughout the state), responsible for maintaining a web-based data submission system and providing support to various Southern California data collectors.

Four regional data centers collect data from multiple organizations and funnel it into the state’s central CEDEN database.

The goals of this project are to improve data sharing among existing monitoring programs and CEDEN and promote effective and efficient assessments of water bodies statewide.


This project was initiated in 2007 and support is ongoing.


To build a basis for regional interaction, SCCWRP began by collaborating with stormwater monitoring agencies that are part of the SMC and select citizen-monitoring groups to conduct a pilot project representing a subset of all monitoring entities. Since then, SCCWRP has built upon this network to provide support for more than 25 data-submitting organizations. Ongoing efforts continue to assist existing and new monitoring organizations in preparing their data for submission to the regional data center. SCCWRP then transfers all of the collected data to CEDEN.


This project helped to establish a cooperative information management system for California’s water quality data, and ensured that data submitted to the state could be shared among monitoring organizations and made accessible to the public. SWRCB staff can now use information queried from the CEDEN distributed data system to make statewide water body assessments. CEDEN data can be accessed by monitoring groups or the public through the CEDEN website. The California Water Monitoring Council's My Water Quality website adds interpretive context to CEDEN data.


Collaborators on this project have included the State Water Resources Control Board (SWRCB), Moss Landing Marine Laboratories (MLML), Southern California Stormwater Monitoring Coalition (SMC), the University of California Davis, San Diego Coastkeeper, Santa Monica Baykeeper, Heal the Bay, Orange County Coastkeeper, and the Southern California Marine Institute.


Developing a statewide water quality monitoring and visualization system (Video) - January 2012 presentation to SCCWRP member agencies discussing CEDEN directions.
For more information on CEDEN, contact Steve Steinberg at (714) 755-3260.
This page was last updated on: 7/18/2014