U.S., Mexico officials urge collaboration on water issues - Albuquerque Journal

U.S., Mexico officials urge collaboration on water issues

In this 2017 file photo, the Rio Grande flows with the Mexican neighborhood of Anapra on the left and El Paso, Texas, on the right. Water experts from New Mexico, Texas and Mexico convened this week in a virtual conference to discuss regional water issues. (Roberto E. Rosales/Albuquerque Journal)

International officials must work together to research and conserve shared groundwater supplies, experts from New Mexico, Texas and the Mexican state of Chihuahua said during a virtual conference this week.

Sam Fernald, director of the New Mexico Water Resources Research Institute, said that how the countries choose to use water now will influence the border region’s environment and economy for the next 1,000 years.

“Our shared aquifers are more important than ever in the face of diminished surface water supplies due to drought and climate change,” Fernald said.

The “Two Nations, One Water” conference featured university and government presentations about acequias, water quality and measuring agricultural water use.

Luis Carlos Alatorre, an engineer with Mexico’s National Water Commission, said the two countries need to improve wastewater systems to protect common water supplies.

“There is a lot of opportunity here,” Alatorre said. “But, we have to put these projects into play at the government-to-government level.”

The Mesilla Basin aquifer system serves Las Cruces, El Paso and Ciudad Juárez.

The U.S. Geological Survey’s latest report on the aquifer states that “declining water levels, deteriorating water quality, and increasing use of groundwater resources by municipal, industrial and agricultural water-users on both sides of the international border have raised concerns about the long-term availability of this supply.”

Maria-Elena Giner, U.S. commissioner of the International Boundary and Water Commission for the U.S. and Mexico, urged groups to share data that can help politicians advocate for funding regional water infrastructure.

The commission is headquartered in El Paso, and manages water treaties, and international reservoirs and treatment plants.

“The science piece and the technical piece seems to always work well,” Giner said. “It is in the case of actual transboundary work where I’ve noticed that there has been challenges is in the legal frameworks. So, it’s about how we get beyond just talking science and modeling.”

The conference will conclude Thursday.

 

Theresa Davis is a Report for America corps member covering water and the environment for the Albuquerque Journal.

Home » ABQnews Seeker » U.S., Mexico officials urge collaboration on water issues


Albuquerque Journal and its reporters are committed to telling the stories of our community.

• Do you have a question you want someone to try to answer for you? Do you have a bright spot you want to share?
   We want to hear from you. Please email yourstory@abqjournal.com

taboola desktop

1
Official: Upgrades urged at Amtrak crash site, but no ...
ABQnews Seeker
The chief elected official in the ... The chief elected official in the Missouri county where an Amtrak train slammed into a dump truck said Tuesday that residents and county leaders ...
2
Albuquerque redistricting committee to take final vote
ABQnews Seeker
Albuquerque's citizen redistricting committee is slated ... Albuquerque's citizen redistricting committee is slated to take its final vote Wednesday, deciding what it thinks is the best way to reshape the city's ...
3
Teen charged in shooting threat at Edgewood school
ABQnews Seeker
A 17-year-old allegedly threatened to shoot ... A 17-year-old allegedly threatened to shoot up a school earlier this month in Edgewood. State Police spokeswoman Candace Hopkins said Emma Haviland, of Edgewood, ...
4
TOP OF MIND: What do you think of the ...
ABQnews Seeker
Click here to tell us: ... Click here to tell us: What do you think of the governor's opposition to bringing migrants to N.M. at this time? Responses must ...
5
APD creates unit to target road rage, aggressive driving
ABQnews Seeker
with a way for the public ... with a way for the public to submit evidence — as detectives search for the shooters in two recent road-rage incidents on Interstate 40. ...
6
Woman charged in 2020 ABQ homicide
ABQnews Seeker
Detectives arrested a woman for her ... Detectives arrested a woman for her alleged role in the fatal shooting of a man in 2020 outside an apartment complex on West Central. ...
7
Details emerge in Sunday shootings after more video is ...
ABQnews Seeker
Police say a man who is ... Police say a man who is suspected of killing his wife may have killed himself. They initially had charged the couple's son in the ...
8
'National Treasure' series filming in Santa Fe
ABQnews Seeker
The search for treasure continues. The ... The search for treasure continues. The New Mexico State Film Office announced that the Disney+ series, 'National Treasure' is filming in and around Santa ...
9
NM primary election results certified as November election looms
ABQnews Seeker
New Mexico closed the books — ... New Mexico closed the books — for the most part — on a primary election cycle marked by conspiracy theories and legal warnings, as ...