Wednesday, August 16, 2017

Domestic water testing Ruidoso

New Mexico Environment Department (NMED) and the New Mexico Department of Health (DOH) are hosting free Domestic Well Water Testing events in Ruidoso on August 18 and 19, 2017 and Pecos on September 9, 2017. These well water testing events are great opportunities for area residents to check pH, specific conductance, and the levels of arsenic, fluoride, iron, sulfate, and nitrate in their well water. NMED and DOH staff will also be available to discuss concerns related to private wells and water quality. The Ruidoso event will take place at the Eastern New Mexico University- Ruidoso at 709 Mechem Drive, in Ruidoso. Water samples will be accepted from 1:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m. on Friday, August 18, and from 9:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. on Saturday, August 19. The Pecos event will take place at the Pecos Municipal Building at 92 South main Street, in Pecos. Water samples will be accepted from 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. on Saturday, September 9. To participate, residents need to bring at least a quart of their well water to the event. Well water should be collected in a clean container, prior to any treatment, and as close to the time of the event as possible. Participants should allow water to run a couple of minutes prior to collecting well water. Stay Connected with New Mexico Environment Department

Tuesday, August 15, 2017

U.S. Senator Tom Udall delivered the keynote address at New Mexico Water Resources Research Institute

SOCORRO, N.M. — Today, U.S. Senator Tom Udall delivered the keynote address at New Mexico Water Resources Research Institute’s (WRRI) 62nd Annual N.M. Water Conference. In his address, entitled "Federal Water Policy and New Mexico: Our Progress and the Challenges Ahead," Udall discussed the current water challenges facing New Mexico, including climate change, innovative solutions and opportunities for making every drop count, and his work to improve federal water policy to best support New Mexico’s communities. Udall last addressed the NM WRRI Water Conference in 2012, and afterward issued a comprehensive report recommending 40 proposed actions based on suggestions contributed by the over 500 stakeholder participants. In his remarks today, Udall provided an update on his efforts to improve federal water policy affecting New Mexico communities — including his comprehensive drought legislation, now called the New Mexico Drought Preparedness Act, which he wrote based on the stakeholder recommendations in the 2012 report. Udall reintroduced the bill in June with Senator Martin Heinrich. “We face a 21st century supply and demand situation. Regional water managers expect that, in the coming decades, we will see water shortages everywhere in our state except the San Juan Basin. In the south, growth around the border zone in Santa Teresa and Las Cruces will drive even more demand for municipal and industrial water. And the climate is warming,” Udall said. "These are big challenges. Tensions can run high over water in the West. … Cooperation will be the only successful strategy -- to prepare for drought, to adapt to climate change, and to modernize our integrated water system. We must balance agriculture use, urban areas, and ecosystem needs." "We know drought will return,” Udall continued. "Now is the time to prepare." Udall also provided an update on two other pieces of legislation to improve efficiency and limit waste which emerged from the 2012 conference, the Smart Energy and Water Efficiency Act, and the Water Efficiency Improvement Act. He is optimistic that both bills will move forward this year. Following his speech, Udall moderated a panel discussion, “Addressing hidden realities of new water opportunities," with several water experts, including Myron Armijo, governor of Santa Ana Pueblo; and Terry Brunner, chief program officer with Grow New Mexico. He also participated in a discussion with his cousin Brad Udall, senior water and climate research scientist/scholar at Colorado State University’s Colorado Water Institute, about the "Udall Water Legacy" and the influences that have shaped their views on water and Western water policy. The full text of Udall’s remarks as prepared for delivery are below. Illustrations shown during the speech are available here. Thank you for being part of this annual conference. It’s great to be back with you! Thank you President Wells and New Mexico Tech for hosting us here -- adjacent to the Rio Grande. This is the ideal backdrop for discussing smart strategies for the enormous water challenges facing our state today. And a huge thanks to Sam Fernald, Cathy Ortega Klett, and the team for organizing this important get together -- as they have done for many years running, now. This audience has the technological knowledge -- matched with innovative ideas -- to help ensure a sustainable future for New Mexico water. I have a great deal of respect for New Mexico’s Institute -- and the other states’ water research institutes. As a co-sponsor of the legislation to reauthorize these institutes, I am optimistic about its passage and continued solid bipartisan support for funding. I will do my part on the Senate Appropriations Committee. I am back here -- five years later -- to report back about the progress we’ve made since the 2012 conference. At that time, we discussed many policy ideas. And afterward, we issued a report full of actions to take. But before we get into that, I’d like to briefly talk about today’s water resource management landscape. Because that tricky picture shows why we need to come together like this and seek cooperative solutions. I always like to start with John Wesley Powell’s map of the watersheds in the West. I have this map hanging in my office in Washington. Powell thought state lines should follow those boundaries. And if they didn’t, there would be water problems. Well, he was right. On top of that, Western water has a 19th century legal framework – with 20th century infrastructure – and 21st century pressures of increasing demand and climate change. Our long-term water supply and consumption are out of balance – even with current conservation efforts. Water professionals here today know this in technical terms. Farmers here know this in personal terms. First, the legal system – based on the need to develop the West – rewards use, not conservation. Those laws are adapting -- but largely remain on the books. Next, our 20th century infrastructure is aging. Elephant Butte Dam just celebrated its centennial — and it is not alone. Water lines and treatment plants are many decades old. Across the country, we have more than $350 billion worth of water infrastructure needs. Much of that is simply maintenance and repair. Here are some quick statistics on why we should invest: •For every one dollar we spend on water infrastructure, we return six dollars to our gross domestic product; •Investment in water infrastructure contributes more than $150 billion each year to annual household income, and; •Failure to invest in water and wastewater systems will lead to the loss of nearly 500,000 jobs by 2025 and 950,000 jobs by 2040. The needs I am talking about are not big new dams and pipelines. The era of guaranteed big federal investment in new water projects is largely over. The budget pressures and environmental costs are just too large. So we need to focus primarily on maintaining the water infrastructure we have. And I hold out hope – and am pushing for – a federal infrastructure package that would help address these needs, especially in the West. President Trump may not spend a lot of time thinking about the Bureau of Reclamation. But Secretary Zinke does. And we are doing everything we can to work closely with him on infrastructure. I even went horseback riding with him the other day. Finally, we face a 21st century supply and demand situation. Regional water managers expect that, in the coming decades, we will see water shortages everywhere in our state except the San Juan Basin. In the south, growth around the border zone in Santa Teresa and Las Cruces will drive even more demand for municipal and industrial water. And the climate is warming. In the Southwest, we’ve seen a 2.5 degree temperature increase since 1971. Last week, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration reported that 2016 was Earth's warmest year on record. And it was the third year in a row that temperatures broke global records. The Bureau of Reclamation projects that the Rio Grande Basin will be hit the hardest over the coming century -- warming 5 to 6 degrees by 2100. That would cut the water flow south of Elephant Butte by half. And that is on top of a similar-size reduction from the San Juan Chama project – based on changes in New Mexico’s Colorado River allocations in low water years. These are big challenges. Tensions can run high over water in the West. Inter-basin transfers, endangered species, municipal versus rural users, Texas versus New Mexico, the U.S. versus Mexico. The list goes on. Cooperation will be the only successful strategy -- to prepare for drought, to adapt to climate change, and to modernize our integrated water system. We must balance agriculture use, urban areas, and ecosystem needs. Five years ago, we came together to discuss policy options to manage water scarcity in New Mexico. At that time, the state was in severe drought. Your insight and investment helped produce a report. It identified problem areas and made consensus-based policy recommendations, primarily in areas where the federal government can help. The signature result of that was the 2013 New Mexico Drought Relief Act. This spring, I reintroduced the bill for the third time, along with Senator Heinrich. We renamed it the New Mexico Drought Preparedness Act. You can see why. Here’s the most recent map of New Mexico drought conditions – from August 8 of this year. And here’s a map from four years ago – August 6, 2013. A marked – and welcome -- change. But we should be honest with ourselves—with 16 of the last 17 years as the hottest years on record—this reprieve is temporary. While the drought map looks much better, Dr. Phil King with New Mexico State has made an important point recently. Groundwater levels have been depressed since 2003, and Elephant Butte and Caballo Reservoir are just above 16 percent and 18 percent capacity respectively. Drier conditions are likely our New Normal. The Drought Act includes provisions to: •Study the whole Rio Grande Basin with the National Academies of Science, •Study additional water storage opportunities to provide additional management flexibility, •Promote voluntary water sharing among stakeholders in the Middle Rio Grande, •Extend the Emergency Drought Relief Act to allow the Bureau of Reclamation adapt to strained water supplies, and •Use our current authorities more effectively. We know drought will return. Now is the time to prepare. We are making progress with the bill, but Congress is slow. It’s like pushing water up hill. The Senate Subcommittee on Water and Power has held two hearings on the bill -- one in 2015 and one this June. We want to get the bill out of committee and through the Senate – as part of a larger package of water bills. We have also seen progress on parts of the bill in other ways. First has been the annual appropriations process. This year I was able to extend authorization of the Emergency Drought Relief Act to 2022. And we increased the spending cap for water projects by $30 million. We expect it will pass later this year-- and provide flexible operations and planning authority for the whole Reclamation system when there is drought. We have also included important language and funding -- to help Reclamation with voluntary water leasing efforts in the Middle Rio Grande. This was one of the key pieces of our 2012 report. Voluntary water sharing helps compensate farmers for stream flows - and avoid more difficult issues with the Endangered Species Act. In addition, two water efficiency bills came out of our 2012 effort. And both were in an energy bill that passed the Senate last year. And both bills are very well positioned to move in any energy legislation again this year. One of the bills, the Smart Energy and Water Efficiency Act, addresses the energy-water nexus -- treating water as an expensive and energy intensive process. Leaks and breaks waste as much as 2 trillion gallons of purified drinking water each year. Water that takes a huge amount of energy—and money—to treat and pump. And then just goes into the ground. So our bill supports investment in information technology -- that can identify decreases in water pressure, and identify leaks and breaks immediately or even before they occur – to save water, energy and money. The second bill, the Water Efficiency Improvement Act, would make the EPA’s popular WaterSense program permanent. For those who don’t know, WaterSense is like the EnergyStar label but for water fixtures like faucets and sprinklers. Since 2006, WaterSense products saved more than 2.1 trillion gallons of water -- and more than $46.3 billion in consumer water and energy bills. Each dollar spent on this program saved consumers an estimated $1,100. My bipartisan bill would make WaterSense permanent. This legislation is especially needed now because the new Administration wants to eliminate WaterSense. We’ve also made progress on other proposals from the 2012 Conference Report, including: •Restarting annual funding to the Transboundary Aquifer Research -- which allows for collaboration and data exchange between Mexican and U.S. partners. •Funding from the Army Corps of Engineers for the Rio Grande Environmental Management Program -- to repay past commitments to New Mexico towns and cities for water infrastructure. •Giving acequias and other agricultural users access to additional U.S. Department of Agriculture funding through the Regional Conservation Partnership Program to help unique New Mexico water users update their historic irrigation systems. •Helping secure $150 million dollars over the last two years for the Watershed Protection and Flood Prevention Program. That program provides technical and financial help to support off-farm conservation projects. •Dedicating a portion of EPA water funding for “green infrastructure.” This uses natural hydrology designs to reduce runoff and contamination at lower costs than traditional—mostly concrete—projects. The Southern Sandoval County Arroyo Flood Control Authority completed a first of its kind project with this funding just last year. In 2012, the threat of climate change underpinned our conference report. Climate change still inform all we do in terms of water resource management. The first natural system affected by climate change is water. And that threat is here and now.   We have seen this first-hand in New Mexico – severe droughts, decreased snow pack, flooding caused by uncharacteristically warm winters and springs, and catastrophic fires causing severe erosion and damaging surface water. Climate change impacts are being felt throughout the West. The time to adapt is now. The science of climate change should not be political. We must make our policy decisions based on the science – and our responsibility to future generations. You are a cohort of smart, technically savvy, and politically astute water experts. You can help think through the new round of challenges we have -- and work together to solve problems. The stakes are high. But as Margaret Mead famously said, “Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world; indeed, it's the only thing that ever has.” As your senator, my job is to help groups of thoughtful, committed citizens like you effect that change. So I returned to report on our progress—and I am seeking your feedback for future work. We are looking for cooperative ideas, not taking sides in conflicts. Rest assured -- we have plenty of conflict in Washington these days. I am also excited to hear about your success stories. Many of you have accomplished great things in the past five years, and learned a lot that you can share. The Middle Rio Grande Conservancy District, Elephant Butte, our Tribes and Pueblos, acequia associations, our arroyo flood control authorities, water utilities and other state and local agencies are working hard on these issues every day. As are conservation groups and academic organizations. Thank you all. So, my staff and I look forward to your insight and expertise today and tomorrow -- and to working together to make our state’s water supplies more secure for our children and grandchildren. I have some time for questions, if you would like, before our next presentation.

Friday, July 28, 2017

Legislation aimed at ending horse slaughter

Legislation aimed at ending horse slaughter Ruidoso News ASPCA Last week, members of the U.S. Senate Appropriations Committee voted in favor of a ban on slaughtering horses for human consumption on American soil. The bipartisan amendment to the Fiscal Year 2018 agriculture appropriations bill disallows spending by the U.S. Department of Agriculture in that year on inspections at prospective horse slaughter plants. Officials with the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, known by the acronym ASPCA, commended the Senate appropriation committee members for passing an anti-horse slaughter amendment in its FY 2018 Agriculture Appropriations bill. The amendment will prevent the USDA from using taxpayer dollars to inspect horse slaughter facilities. The Udall-Graham Amendment, introduced by Sens. Tom Udall, Democrat from New Mexico. and Lindsey Graham, Republican from South Carolina, was passed in the full committee by a bipartisan vote and would effectively continue a ban on the horse slaughter industry on U.S. soil.

Statement of Secretary Perdue Regarding Japan's Planned Increase of Tariff on U.S. Frozen Beef

Statement of Secretary Perdue Regarding Japan's Planned Increase of Tariff on U.S. Frozen Beef WASHINGTON, July 28, 2017 – The government of Japan has announced that rising imports of frozen beef in the first quarter of the Japanese fiscal year (April-June) have triggered a safeguard, resulting in an automatic increase to Japan's tariff rate under the WTO on imports of frozen beef from the United States. The increase, from 38.5 percent to 50 percent, will begin August 1, 2017 and last through March 31, 2018. The tariff would affect only exporters from countries, including the United States, which do not have free trade agreements with Japan currently in force. U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue issued the following statement: “I am concerned that an increase in Japan's tariff on frozen beef imports will impede U.S. beef sales and is likely to increase the United States’ overall trade deficit with Japan. This would harm our important bilateral trade relationship with Japan on agricultural products. It would also negatively affect Japanese consumers by raising prices and limiting their access to high-quality U.S. frozen beef. I have asked representatives of the Japanese government directly and clearly to make every effort to address these strong concerns, and the harm that could result to both American producers and Japanese consumers.” U.S. exports of beef and beef products to Japan totaled $1.5 billion last year, making it the United States’ top market.

Friday, July 21, 2017

NM WRRI’s 62nd Annual New Mexico Water Conference invites poster abstracts

Deadline: July 26, 2017 NM WRRI’s 62nd Annual New Mexico Water Conference invites poster abstracts on any water research or water management topic. The poster session will take place on Wednesday, August 16, 10:00-11:30 am, New Mexico Tech. Click here for details.

Thursday, July 20, 2017

Aamodt Final Judgment and Decree Signed Despite TOW Outstanding Protest

Respond to this post by replying above this line New post on La Jicarita Aamodt Final Judgment and Decree Signed Despite TOW Outstanding Protest by lajicarita By KAY MATTHEWS On Thursday, July 13, the day before U.S. District Judge William P. Johnson was scheduled to sign the Aamodt Final Judgment and Decree, Taos County Manager Leandro Córdova called to tell me that Taos County contract attorney Peter Shoenfeld had been authorized to submit a Motion for Leave to Appear in a Limited Manner at the signing. The motion sought to bring to the court's attention that provisions of the Aamodt Settlement Act require that before any final judgment can be issued the State Engineer must grant a permit for the Top of the World water rights, located in northern Taos County, to a location that will serve the four pueblos in the Aamodt adjudication—Pojoaque, Tesuque, Nambe, and San Ildefonso—and the proposed Pojoaque Valley Regional Water System. That permit has not been granted: the State Engineer has not rendered a decision in Taos County's protest of the TOW water transfer at a hearing before the Office of the State Engineer in October of 2016. Judge Johnson rejected the motion and signed the final judgment and decree, thus ending the more than 50-year-old Aamodt Adjudication. The Aamodt Adjudication Settlement Act that was signed in 2010 stipulates that in order to meet the terms of the settlement the water rights have to have been “acquired and entered into appropriate contracts” and “permits have been issued by the New Mexico State Engineer to the Regional Water Authority” and that “the permits shall be free of any condition that materially adversely affects the ability of the Pueblos or the Regional Water Authority to divert or use the Pueblo water supply . . . .” As I wrote in my previous La Jicarita article, "Judge Set to Sign Aamodt Adjudication Final Decree When Top of the World Water Rights are Still Contested?", none of the attorneys who represent parties to the adjudication were able to explain to me how the Final Decree could be signed in light of these requirements. John Utton, who is the attorney for Santa Fe County, could or would not answer my question, yet he is the attorney who signed the "Notice of Certification by Santa Fe County and City of Santa Fe of Satisfactions of Conditions", or in other words, that the conditions of the Aamodt Settlement Act have been met "for entry of a Final Decree." Arianne Singer, who represents the state in the adjudication, signed off and has never returned my phone calls. The U.S. Attorney signed off as well as did all the attorneys for the pueblos. Although this Final Judgment and Decree also denies all other objections, parties to the adjudication can appeal to the 10th Circuit Court of Appeals. Three hundred non-pueblo water rights owners, many of whom never wanted implementation of a water delivery system in lieu of their wells, filed objections to the adjudication. Some objectors have already retained attorneys with the Western Agriculture, Resource and Business Advocates, who also represent members of Northern New Mexicans Protecting Land, Water, and Rights (NNMProtects) in the controversy between the pueblos and county residents over access and easement rights on county roads that fall within the exterior boundaries of the four pueblos involved in the Aamodt Settlement—Tesuque, Nambe, Pojoaque, and San Ildefonso. In 2015 the Santa Fe County Commission passed Resolution 2015-25, which requires that the legal status of the county roads be resolved before the commission appropriates funding for the regional water system. The water system must be completed by 2024 under the terms of the Settlement or the Decree will be null and void. NNMProtects attorneys were prevented from attending a closed door meeting between the Santa Fe County Commission and representatives of federal agencies and the pueblos on Thursday, July 13 to discuss the road easement controversy. So was Rep. Carl Trujillo, D-Santa Fe, whose district covers part of northern Santa Fe County. So we have two situations in which the parties substantively affected by the terms of the Aamodt Settlement are denied recourse: the citizens of Taos County are denied due process in their protest of the loss of 1,751 acre feet of water from Top of the World and the citizens of the Pojoaque Valley are excluded from meetings that will determine funding for a regional water system that many of them never wanted. While the Aamodt objectors have the opportunity to file an appeal, it will prove costly and decidedly difficult to contest a Final Decree that is being gleefully celebrated by those who benefit from its terms. It seems highly unlikely that Taos County will file an appeal if the State Engineer approves the TOW transfer; the integrity of the protest has already been negated with the issuance of the Final Decree. lajicarita | July 17, 2017 at 12:37 pm | Tags: Aamodt Adjudication Settlement, Northern New Mexicans Protecting Land, Top of the World (TOW) | Categories: Acequias, Groundwater, Law and Courts, New Mexico, New Mexico Office of the State Engineer, Santa Fe County, Taos County, Water Adjudication, water and acequias | URL: http://wp.me/p2bCkq-1Jj Comment See all comments Unsubscribe to no longer receive posts from La Jicarita. Change your email settings at Manage Subscriptions. Trouble clicking? Copy and paste this URL into your browser: https://lajicarita.wordpress.com/2017/07/17/aamodt-final-judgment-and-decree-signed-despite-tow-outstanding-protest/

Wednesday, July 12, 2017

The 62nd NM WRRI Annual New Mexico Water Conference will take place in Socorro, New Mexico on August 15-16, 2017

The 62nd NM WRRI Annual New Mexico Water Conference will take place in Socorro, New Mexico on August 15-16, 2017 with the theme Hidden Realities of New Water Opportunities. A highlight of each year’s annual water conference is a poster session where participants can learn about current water research taking place around the state and region. The poster session, scheduled for Wednesday, August 16, offers a wonderful opportunity for networking with state and regional water experts. We anticipate about 200 attendees at this year's conference. This Call for Poster Abstracts seeks abstracts for posters on any water research or management topic. We encourage interested students, researchers, and practitioners to submit poster abstracts via the online submission process. Abstracts for consideration for posters will be accepted through July 26, 2017. Notification of poster acceptance will be announced by July 31, 2017.

Hunting plans shot? Donate that license to a good cause

Hunting plans shot? Donate that license to a good cause SANTA FE – New Mexico hunters are reminded that in the event they can’t use their hunting license this season, it can be donated for a youth to use. The State Game Commission has authorized two nonprofit organizations, the New Mexico Sportsmen for Fish and Wildlife of Farmington and The Donald R. Kemp Youth Hunting Club in Las Cruces to receive donated hunting licenses and provide them to qualified youths to use. Requests to donate hunting licenses must be made in writing to the department before the start of the hunt. The department recommends submitting the request well in advance to give the organizations time to find an eligible recipient. When a recipient is located, the department will transfer the existing license to them. Hunters should be aware that for mandatory harvest reporting species, the license holder is responsible for filing a harvest report until the transfer is completed or if no recipient is found. Last year, 23 youths age 17 and younger got to go hunting with donated licenses. Hunters should contact the department’s Information Center, (888) 248-6866 or ispa@state.nm.us to make arrangements to donate a hunting license or for more information about the program. No refunds are offered for donated licenses. See the 2017-2018 Hunting Rules and Information Booklet, www.wildlife.state.nm.us, for exceptions that qualify for a refund or transfer of a hunting license.

Tuesday, July 11, 2017

Meeting this Friday July 14

the next Quarterly meeting will be 14 July at 10:00 am in the meeting room of the Artesia Ag Science Center, 67 four Dinkus road Artisia NM. If you have agenda Items please get them to be on or before 7 July 2017. Topics so far. 1. Regional water planing redrawing of boundaries.

Friday, July 7, 2017

WRRI Abstract summisssion deadline

Deadline: July 26, 2017 The 62nd NM WRRI Annual New Mexico Water Conference will take place in Socorro, New Mexico on August 15-16, 2017 with the theme Hidden Realities of New Water Opportunities. A highlight of each year’s annual water conference is a poster session where participants can learn about current water research taking place around the state and region. The poster session, scheduled for Wednesday, August 16, offers a wonderful opportunity for networking with state and regional water experts. We anticipate about 200 attendees at this year's conference. This Call for Poster Abstracts seeks abstracts for posters on any water research or management topic. We encourage interested students, researchers, and practitioners to submit poster abstracts via the online submission process. Abstracts for consideration for posters will be accepted through July 26, 2017. Notification of poster acceptance will be announced by July 31, 2017. For submission guidelines and more information, click here.

NMSU professors expand project to map Zika mosquitoes across southern New Mexico

NMSU professors expand project to map Zika mosquitoes across southern New Mexico DATE: 07/07/2017 WRITER: Minerva Baumann, 575-646-7566, mbauma46@nmsu.edu CONTACT: Kathryn Hanley, 575-646-4583, khanley@nmsu.edu CONTACT: Michaela Buenemann, 575-646-3509, elabuen@nmsu.edu Researchers at New Mexico State University have received a second contract from the New Mexico Department of Health to expand last summer’s project to map the geographic distribution of mosquitoes that can carry the Zika virus in the state. In May, the new study determined the species that transmits the Zika virus –Aedes aegypti – is in Doña Ana County. Last year, New Mexico had 10 reported cases of Zika virus disease imported by travelers. There have been no reports of Zika virus disease so far this year. “The state was extremely pleased with our previous work,” said Kathryn Hanley, NMSU biology professor in the College of Arts and Sciences. “Consequently when there was more money issued to study these vectors for Zika virus, they asked us to come on board again and this time they asked if we could do a more detailed study within cities.” Hanley and NMSU geography professor Michaela Buenemann’s investigations last summer demonstrated the Aedes aegypti and Aedes albopictus mosquitoes are only found in the southern third of the state. “All we know right now is that the species occur in urban and built-up environments in the southern counties of New Mexico,” said Buenemann. “We don’t know where the species occur within cities. For example, we don’t know if they are more prevalent in vegetated or built-up areas, in open spaces or densely populated parts, or in neighborhoods with higher or lower incomes. Both human and environmental factors likely shape the distributions of those mosquitoes but at this point we really don’t know.” The new contract will allow the researchers to uncover specifics about what kinds of conditions attract the mosquitoes that can potentially transmit Zika virus. “We’re going to do a detailed study of the 11 largest cities in southern New Mexico,” said Hanley. “So we’ll be doing extensive trapping in urban areas. We’re knocking on doors in urban areas to ask people if we can access their backyards to put our mosquito traps down. That will also lend itself to modeling which environmental factors in cities shape the distribution and abundance of these mosquitoes.” Graduate students working with Buenemann and Hanley have already made one discovery this summer. They started trapping in the spring expecting to see the first mosquitoes in July. Instead they caught mosquitoes in early May, which indicates the insects have been active since March, a much longer period of disease risk than initially predicted. “We will continue to trap at least until we get a hard frost,” said Hanley. “We assume once we get a hard frost we’ll stop collecting Aedes aegypti but it’s not inconceivable that we’ll be trapping all year long and into next summer.” “We’re not only interested in how these mosquitoes vary across space and through time but also in what kinds of human-environmental interactions might explain these distributions,” said Buenemann. This new study will include two additional areas of research conducted by Immo Hansen and Jiannong Xu, both associate professors of biology at NMSU. The Hansen lab is going to test how resistant the New Mexican mosquitoes are against commonly used insecticides. “Resistance levels are important to know when there is an outbreak because it helps the mosquito control professionals choose the right type of insecticide to get the biggest bang for the buck,” Hansen said. Xu will lead research about the New Mexico mosquitoes’ microbiome, the bacteria and fungi that live together with the mosquito. Manipulating the mosquito microbiome also can help mosquito control efforts. “The mosquito associated microbes have co-evolved with the mosquito host,” Xu said. “They have significant contributions to various mosquito life traits including development, fecundity and vector competence. Understanding the microbe-mosquito interactions will facilitate development of novel strategies for mosquito control.” The goal for the NMDOH is to inform southern New Mexico communities of the risk of Zika and other mosquito-borne diseases. “Your relative risk is going to be determined by how many Aedes aegypti mosquitoes you are likely to encounter at your home,” Hanley said. “If you live way out on a farm, our research suggests you are unlikely to encounter them. If you live in Las Cruces proper, our study should allow us to tell you whether you work, live or play in an area of very high or low mosquito density.” For information about Zika virus, visit https://nmhealth.org/go/zika or http://www.cdc.gov/zika. - 30 - Follow NMSU News on Twitter: http://twitter.com/nmsunews Follow NMSU News on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/NMSUNews

NMSU alumni use grant to expand sustainable farming techniques

NMSU alumni use grant to expand sustainable farming techniques DATE: 07/07/2017 WRITER: Billy Huntsman, 575-646-7953, wthv8420@nmsu.edu CONTACT: Lea WiseSurguy-Sophiliazo, , patavivafarm@gmail.com Along a high gravel road radiating white under the sunlight, near the Rio Grande, whose waters splash against the walls of a bridge over it, and nestled within acres of shady pecan trees is Taylor Hood Farms. Here New Mexico State University alumni Lea WiseSurguy-Sophiliazo and her husband, Patrick DeSimio-Sophiliazo, are preparing for the first of a series of community meals in mid July. “We want to bring together anyone who has a role in the agricultural sector—farmers, agricultural scientists, policymakers, chefs, distributors—to share knowledge and build partnerships,” DeSimio said. The rows of artichokes, which grow in fat bundles with regal purple flowers on top, squash, zucchini, and the hoop houses draped in opaque canvas containing tomato plants, most green, some rare reds, are part of the first exhibit in a project. “The project is called the MESA Project and it’s funded through a $250,000 grant through ArtPlace America,” said DeSimio. MESA stands for Meetings for Environmentally Sustainable Agriculture and the project’s goal is to create a symbiotic relationship among people involved in agriculture, farming and food preparation in a way that is beneficial to the environment. Taylor Hood Farms is a partner in the MESA Project, which will eventually include other farms in Doña Ana County. In 2015, Julia Barello, head of the NMSU Art Department in the College of Arts and Sciences, contacted WiseSurguy, who had recently completed her MFA in sculpture. Barello encouraged WiseSurguy to apply for the ArtPlace grant, though neither had any idea what the grant could be used for. Eventually, WiseSurguy came up with the idea of “protecting the environment through the culinary arts,” she said. “One of the biggest benefits we can have in our area is using the arts to improve the sustainability of our agriculture, both in terms of long-term farming issues—water scarcity, topsoil loss and soil salinization—and in terms of protecting the environment,” said DeSimio. The project has four parts, DeSimio said, one being the community meals. “Agriculture and food go hand in hand,” said WiseSurguy. “It’s absolutely a reality that for most of the people who come into this type of work, it’s because they have a love for food and a love for the land and there is that special joy that comes from eating meals together.” Community meals, therefore, are an ideal way to bring together different portions of the agricultural industry to start talking about ways to yield better crops while protecting the environment, she said. Part two is an experimental farm, Pata Viva, DeSimio said. “Pata Viva Farm is the experimental farm part of our grant where we’re going to be implementing all of the different techniques that we’ll be talking about in each one of ours meals in order to get these processes off of the research farms, get them onto working farms,” WiseSurguy said. Pata Viva’s farming techniques, which focus on reducing water use, topsoil loss and soil salinization, are still in the design phase so the first community meal will take place on July 15 at Taylor Hood Farms, a partner farm that has independently implemented sustainable farming methods through a partnership with professors in NMSU’s College of Agricultural, Consumer and Environmental Sciences. Pata Viva Farm and Taylor Hood Farms will be working closely together to expand sustainable agricultural in Dona Ana County, and Taylor Hood Farms will likely be among the first additional sites for any viable techniques that Pata Viva identifies through the MESA Project. DeSimio and his partners hope these techniques will become popular and be implemented on other farms. One of the biggest components of Pata Viva’s farming techniques is the use of special greenhouses designed to keep temperatures well below 120-130 degrees Fahrenheit, which conventional greenhouses can reach or exceed in the summer. The greenhouses at Pata Viva and Taylor Hood Farms were designed by Carlos Estrada-Vega, a Las Cruces artist, with help from Bryce Richard. These uniquely designed greenhouses can stay below 85 degrees in the summer and above 50 degrees in the winter, without any artificial heating or cooling, said WiseSurguy. The third part is creating a “very user-friendly technical manual” to further help farmers in implementing these new techniques. DeSimio, a master’s candidate in rhetoric and communication at NMSU, is working with agricultural scientists to develop the manual, which will be routinely updated to address farmers’ issues when implementing these new techniques. “The fourth part is a final art show at the University Art Gallery,” said DeSimio. “There’s going to be a whole exhibit focused on the intersections of agriculture and the environment.” The first community meal will take place on July 15 from 6 to 9 p.m. at Taylor Hood Farms. The project runners anticipate around 300 people attending. Register here. For more information about the project, visit mesanm.org. - 30 - Follow NMSU News on Twitter: http://twitter.com/nmsunews Follow NMSU News on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/NMSUNews

Thursday, July 6, 2017

The Hornshell CCA and CCAA drafts publish in the Federal Register

The Hornshell CCA and CCAA drafts publish in the Federal Register tomorrow, July 7th. Here is the link to the CCA/A Federal Register notice: https://s3.amazonaws.com/public-inspection.federalregister.gov/2017-14235.pdf. The open comment period will end on August 7th and the drafts will go to signature on August 10th. After that, we have one month to enroll folks into the program. Because it is a short window to enroll, we have developed a nonbinding application (attached) that can be filled out and signed (after the agreements have been signed by FWS) to show intent to enroll. This in no way binds you to enrollment, but assures enrollment in the event you so desire. It will allow us more time to get individual CIs/CPs in place with folks once the listing determination has occurred. If you wish to enroll, please fill out the application, sign and date (must be dated after the parent agreements have been signed by FWS) and send back to me. Please don’t hesitate to contact me with any questions or concerns. Thank you, Emily

Tuesday, June 20, 2017

Next quarterly meeting 14 July

The poll is in and the next Quarterly meeting will be 14 July at 10:00 am in the meeting room of the Artesia Ag Science Center, 67 four Dinkus road Artisia NM. If you have agenda Items please get them to be on or before 7 July 2017. Topics so far. 1. Regional water planing redrawing of boundaries.

Friday, June 16, 2017

Sheriff working on Rural Community Policing

Mark Gage the sheriff of Eddy County is working on developing a rural community policing. It is difficult with a force of only about 60 officers to have a presence in a county 4,184 square miles or 2,677,760 acres big with thousands of miles of back county gravel roads. The attached form is so that patrol officer on sheriff deputies can respond to rural areas better. For location you can use rural addressing system, Range Township section ¼ of the ¼ , GPS lat and long. Whatever you have the more the better. You can also include information like Elderly in residence, Heart condition, and diabetic whatever you think will help a first responder. This is 100% voluntary and is to help them help you. You can mail, fax, scan and e-mail, or drop it by the Eddy County Sheriff’s office or the Extension Office and I will make sure he gets it. Send this to your friends or give them a form. Right now he is concentration is on ranches but he will want to do the same with farms I am sure in the near future. If you have question or concerns call Mark or the Under Sheriff. Share this form with other Rural residents, and help Sheriff Gage help us.

Wednesday, June 14, 2017

USDA Announces More Than $9 Million to Address Critical Water Resources Issues

USDA Announces More Than $9 Million to Address Critical Water Resources Issues Media contact: Sally Gifford, 202-720-2047 WASHINGTON, D.C. June 14, 2017 – The U.S. Department of Agriculture's (USDA) National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA) today announced 14 grants totaling more than $9 million to help solve critical water problems in rural and agricultural watersheds across the United States. The grants are funded through the Water for Agriculture Challenge Area of the Agriculture and Food Research Initiative, authorized by the 2014 Farm Bill. “Food, water, climate, energy, and environmental issues are all linked together, which is why we invest in multi-level approaches to water management solutions,” said NIFA Director Sonny Ramaswamy. “These solutions will improve water resource quantity and quality for America’s agricultural systems, and also inform decision makers and citizens alike.” The Water for Agriculture Challenge Area aims to address critical water resources issues such as drought, excess soil moisture, flooding, quality and quantity, and other water issues within an agricultural context. Grants being announced today are listed by description and state. Water for Agriculture Coordinated Agricultural Projects: • University of Florida, Gainesville, Florida, $2,000,000 • Pennsylvania State University, State College, Pennsylvania, $2,192,992 • Texas A&M AgriLife Research, College Station, Texas, $1,383,497 Understanding Decisions and Behaviors Connected with Agriculture and Post-harvest Processing Industry Water Use: • University of California, Berkeley, California, $463,338 • Purdue University, West Lafayette, Indiana, $462,499 • University of Minnesota, St. Paul, Minnesota, $458,043 • University of Montana, Missoula, Montana, $462,539 • University of Nebraska, Lincoln, Nebraska, $453,539 Understanding the Human Health Impacts to Exposure from Nontraditional Water Used in Agriculture: • University of Connecticut, Storrs, Connecticut, $406,907 • University of Illinois, Champaign, Illinois, $463,338 • Duke University, Durham, North Carolina, $499,999 • University of Nevada, Las Vegas, Nevada, $495,692 • University of Nevada, Reno, Nevada, $499,617 • Utah State University, Logan, Utah, $500,000 Project details can be found at the NIFA website. Among the grants, a University of Montana project will improve the efficacy of climate information for water use through developing, testing, and institutionalizing new tools for producers. A University of Florida project will ensure economic sustainability of agriculture and silviculture in Northern Florida and Southern Georgia while protecting the water quantity, quality, and habitat in the Upper Floridian Aquifer. Since 2014, NIFA has awarded nearly $42 million through the Water for Agriculture Challenge Area. Previously funded projects include a University of Nevada project dedicated to enhancing climate resiliency and agriculture on tribal land. A Clemson University project is focused on developing a near real-time drought forecasting model that would help farmers anywhere in the United States. NIFA invests in and advances agricultural research, education, and extension and promotes transformative discoveries that solve societal challenges. NIFA support for the best and brightest scientists and extension personnel has resulted in user-inspired, groundbreaking discoveries that combat childhood obesity, improve and sustain rural economic growth, address water availability issues, increase food production, find new sources of energy, mitigate climate variability, and ensure food safety. To learn more about NIFA’s impact on agricultural science, visit www.nifa.usda.gov/impacts, sign up for email updates or follow us on Twitter @USDA_NIFA, #NIFAimpacts.

Thursday, June 8, 2017

Quaterly meeting date poll

Please respond on this doodle poll for our 1/4 meeting date https://doodle.com/poll/eysxzmeu9xy555fh

Dear Lower Pecos Water Planning stakeholders,

Dear Lower Pecos Water Planning stakeholders, Thank you for your interest in and commitment to water planning in our state. Please read below and take the surveys linked in to the body of this email. This is a follow-up email to our email that Woods Houghton forwarded on May 22, 2017. For those of you who have already taken the survey about water planning boundaries, thank you. This email has an additional survey and background info attached we’d like you to take. The first survey regards the physical boundaries of the state’s 16 planning regions. As we water planning staff traveled the state to all 16 regions in the past three years to update the plans, we heard from various water stakeholders that they would like to see future changes to the NMISC’s water planning boundaries. We would like your input on this matter by your taking the survey: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/RWP-Boundaries. We encourage you to read the attached white papers first, as getting your informed feedback on the pros and cons of reshaping or modifying existing water planning boundaries based on aquifers and watershed helps ISC shape and improve its water planning program. The other survey has to do with the spreadsheet of Policies, Programs, and Projects list in the updated plans. As part of the process for preparing the Regional Water Plans (ISC, 2014-2017), each region developed a list of policies, programs, and projects, also referred to as the “PPP lists”. Today, we are concerned with what approaches should be used to update the PPP lists. Understanding that every region, and, thus, entities within the regions, is different and has its unique considerations when planning for water, we value your feedback. Again, we encourage you to read the white paper first, as your informed input will help the ISC continue to strive to improve its water planning program. The PPP list survey is available at: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/RWP-PPP-Lists I look forward to hearing your opinions and sharing the results of the survey with you! Thank you in advance for taking the time to read the attached white papers and take the surveys regarding ISC water planning regions’ boundaries and the process for updating the lists of Policies, Programs and Projects of the Regional Water Plans. In addition to the surveys, if you have specific comments or suggestions regarding these two areas, please communicate them with us. We’re asking that you complete the surveys by June 15, 2017. Pardon any duplicative emails. Let us know if you wish to be taken off this list. Best regards, --Lucía <<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<< Lucía F. Sánchez Water Planning Program Manager NM Interstate Stream Commission 407 Galisteo Street Bataan Memorial Building Phone: (505) 476-5397

Upcoming Environmental Modeling in Ground Water Public Meeting

June 8, 2017 In This Update: Upcoming Environmental Modeling in Ground Water Public Meeting On June 28, 2017, EPA will hold an Environmental Modeling Public Meeting. This meeting provides a public forum for pesticide registrants, other stakeholders and EPA to discuss current issues related to modeling pesticide fate, transport, and exposure for pesticide risk assessments in a regulatory context. Groundwater modeling is conducted as part of the pesticide registration and re-evaluation processes. This meeting will focus on: • evidence of subsurface (below 1 meter) biodegradation (or metabolism) in groundwater; • methods for measuring subsurface biodegradation; and • how to incorporate this information in EPA’s models. Requests to participate in the meeting must be received on or before June 21, 2017. Please contact Stephen Wente or Jessica Joyce to register for this meeting. More information can be found at www.regulations.gov in docket # EPA-HQ-OPP-2009-0879-0116. Sign up for updates and abstract requests for future Environmental Modeling Public Meetings.

Thursday, June 1, 2017

New Mexico Water Resources Research Institute hosts conference in Las Cruces in June

New Mexico Water Resources Research Institute hosts conference in Las Cruces in June DATE: 05/31/2017 WRITER: Kristie Garcia, 575-646-4211, kmgarcia@nmsu.edu CONTACT: Jesslyn Ratliff, 575-646-1194, jesslynr@nmsu.edu The New Mexico Water Resources Research Institute at New Mexico State University is hosting the New Mexico Evapotranspiration Conference June 6 and 7 at the Las Cruces Convention Center. The New Mexico Evapotranspiration Conference program is designed to help choose an evapotranspiration model for the New Mexico Statewide Water Assessment (SWA). Discussion amongst the experts at the conference will aid in this decision. The SWA is a three-year project that has been supported by the New Mexico Governor and the New Mexico Legislature. The SWA is an effort that will complement existing state agency water resource assessments. It will provide new, frequently updated, spatially representative assessments of water budgets for the entire state of New Mexico. Evapotranspiration (ET) is one of the components of the model. ET is the process by which water is transferred from the land to the atmosphere by evaporation from the soil and other surfaces and by transpiration from plants. The conference will address how other states are using ET and what has been learned. Discussions will include the latest ET developments, how land-management practices can be impacted by ET estimates and why obtaining better ET data is important. The conference is 8 a.m to 5 p.m. June 6. The conference begins at 8 a.m. June 7 and concludes with a field trip to NMSU’s Leyendecker Research Center starting at 12:45 p.m. Field trip participants will view ET measurement techniques, a new weather station and an alfalfa field. Conference presenters and moderators are from Arizona State University, Elephant Butte Irrigation District, Jornada Experimental Range, Kipp & Zonen, NASA, New Mexico Office of the State Engineer, New Mexico Pecan Growers, New Mexico Tech, New Mexico Water Resources Research Institute, NMSU Department of Animal and Range Sciences (College of Agricultural, Consumer and Environmental Sciences), NMSU Department of Civil Engineering (College of Engineering), University of Idaho, University of Maryland, University of New Mexico, U.S. Department of Agriculture Southwest Climate Hub and U.S. Geological Survey. For a complete agenda and list of speakers, visit https://et.nmwrri.nmsu.edu/program/ Registration is $55 and includes three meals. For those only attending the field trip, registration is $20 and includes transportation and lunch. To register for the conference, visit https://et.nmwrri.nmsu.edu. For more information, call 575-646-1194 or email jesslynr@nmsu.edu. The New Mexico Water Resources Research Institute was established in 1963 by the New Mexico Legislature and approved under the 1964 Water Resources Research Act. The NM WRRI funds research conducted by faculty and students from universities across the state to address water problems critical to New Mexico and the Southwest. The institute also participates in joint efforts to solve water-related problems along the U.S./Mexico border. Visit nmwrri.nmsu.edu for more information. - 30 - Follow NMSU News on Twitter: http://twitter.com/nmsunews Follow NMSU News on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/NMSUNews

Public information and hearing on the listing of the Texas Horn Shell June 15 in Carlsbad.

A public informational session from 5:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m., followed by a public hearing from 6:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. on June 15, 2017, At the Pecos River Conference center in Carlsbad, New Mexico

Proposed Rules DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR Fish and Wildlife Service Texas Horn shell

24654 Federal Register / Vol. 82, No. 102 / Tuesday, May 30, 2017 / Proposed Rules DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR Fish and Wildlife Service 50 CFR Part 17 [Docket No. FWS–R2–ES–2016–0077; 4500030113] RIN 1018–BB34 Endangered and Threatened Wildlife and Plants; Endangered Species Status for the Texas Hornshell AGENCY: Fish and Wildlife Service, Interior. ACTION: Proposed rule; reopening of comment period; public hearings. SUMMARY: We, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service), announce the reopening of the comment period for our August 10, 2016, proposed rule to list the Texas hornshell (Popenaias popeii) as an endangered species under the Endangered Species Act of 1973, as amended (Act). We also are notifying the public that we have scheduled informational meetings followed by public hearings on the proposed rule. Comments previously submitted on the proposal need not be resubmitted, as they are already incorporated into the public record and will be fully considered in our final determination. DATES: Written comments: The comment period on the proposed rule that published August 10, 2016 (81 FR 52796), is reopened. We request that comments on the proposal be submitted on or before June 29, 2017. Comments submitted electronically using the Federal eRulemaking Portal (see ADDRESSES section, below) must be received by 11:59 p.m. Eastern Time on the closing date. Public meetings and hearings: We will hold two public informational sessions and public hearings on the proposed listing rule: (1) A public informational session from 5:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m., followed by a public hearing from 6:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. on June 13, 2017, in Laredo, Texas (see ADDRESSES); and (2) A public informational session from 5:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m., followed by a public hearing from 6:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. on June 15, 2017, in Carlsbad, New Mexico (see ADDRESSES). People needing reasonable accommodations in order to attend and participate in the public meetings should contact the Texas Coastal Ecological Services Field Office, at 281– 286–8282, as soon as possible (see FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT). In order to allow sufficient time to process requests, please call no later than 1 week before the meeting date. ADDRESSES: Document availability: You may obtain copies of the proposed rule and Species Status Assessment Report on the Internet at http:// www.regulations.gov at Docket No. FWS–R2–ES–2016–0077, or by mail from the Texas Coastal Ecological Services Field Office (see FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT). Written comments: You may submit comments by one of the following methods: (1) Electronically: Go to the Federal eRulemaking Portal: http:// www.regulations.gov. In the Search box, enter FWS–R2–ES–2016–0077. You may submit a comment by clicking on ‘‘Comment Now!’’ (2) By hard copy: Submit by U.S. mail or hand-delivery to: Public Comments Processing, Attn: FWS–R2–ES–2016– 0077; U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Headquarters, MS: BPHC, 5275 Leesburg Pike, Falls Church, VA 22041–3803. We request that you send comments only by the methods described above. We will post all comments on http:// VerDate Sepwww.regulations.gov. This generally means that we will post any personal information you provide us (see the Information Requested section below for more information) Public meetings and hearings: The public informational meetings will be held on the following dates and locations: 1. A public informational session from 5:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m., followed by a public hearing from 6:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. at Student Center Ballroom #203, Texas A&M International University, 5201 University Blvd., Laredo, Texas 78041, on June 13, 2017. 2. A public informational session from 5:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m., followed by a public hearing from 6:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. at the Pecos River Village Conference Center, 711 Muscatel Ave., Carlsbad, NM 88220, on June 15, 2017. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Chuck Ardizzone, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Texas Coastal Ecological Services Field Office, 17629 El Camino Real #211, Houston, TX 77058; by telephone 281–286–8282; or by facsimile 281–488–5882. Persons who use a telecommunications device for the deaf (TDD) may call the Federal Relay Service at 800–877–8339.

Friday, March 31, 2017

Environmental Conditions of the Animas and San Juan Watersheds with Emphasis on Gold King Mine and Other Mine Waste Issues

Call for Abstracts and Papers Deadline: April 7, 2017 2nd Annual Conference Environmental Conditions of the Animas and San Juan Watersheds with Emphasis on Gold King Mine and Other Mine Waste Issues June 20-22, 2017 • San Juan College • Farmington NM The June 2017 conference includes a Call for Abstracts and Papers on topics related to the theme of the conference, Environmental Conditions of the Animas and San Juan Watersheds with Emphasis on Gold King Mine and other Mine Waste Issues. Particularly relevant topics include the following: • Geology, minerology, ore bodies and natural sources of contamination • Analysis of Animas and San Juan watersheds as a result of Gold King Mine spill • Effects of acid mine drainage after more than a century of mining • Effects of historical mill-waste discharges • Effects of historical spill events • Effects of the Gold King Mine spill • Differentiating geologic and legacy mining and milling contaminants from Gold King Mine spill contaminants spill contaminants • Transport and fate of mining and milling contaminants in the Animas and San Juan watersheds • Contaminant uptake into the food web • Mining and milling contaminant impacts on surface water, sediment, groundwater, agriculture, livestock, wildlife, and humans • Long-term monitoring • Existing corrective measures to control mine seepage and hydraulic consequences • Options for additional source control, spill prevention, and remediation • E. coli and other organisms in nutrients • Streamflow and water quality sensitivity to climate change • Groundwater and surface-water geochemistry and their interaction with the hyporheic zone Visit the conference website at: https://animas.nmwrri.nmsu.edu/2017/ for abstract guidelines. All abstracts must be submitted online using the provided abstract form.

Thursday, March 30, 2017

NM Clean Water State revolving fund

________________________________________ New Mexico Clean Water State Revolving Fund ________________________________________ March 30th, 2017 through April 28, 2017 the New Mexico Clean Water State Revolving Fund is accepting applications for funding. Eligible entities include any municipality, county, mutual domestic water consumer’s association, water and sanitation district and Indian tribes. Fundable projects must be publicly owned and include: • Construction or renovation of wastewater treatment works including treatment plants, pipes, pumps, force mains and other associated items; • Construction, repair or replacement of decentralized wastewater systems that treat municipal wastewater or domestic sewage; • Projects that manage, reduce, treat or recapture storm water or subsurface drainage water; • Measures to reduce the demand of wastewater treatment works capacity through conservation, efficiency or reuse; • Development or implementation of watershed projects that include at least one of the following areas: watershed management of wet weather discharges, storm water best management practices, watershed partnerships, integrated water resource planning, municipality-wide storm water management planning, or increased resilience of treatment works; • Measures to reduce the energy consumption needs for treatment works; • Projects involving reuse or recycling of wastewater, storm water or subsurface drainage water; • Projects to increase the security of the treatment works; If you are not sure if your project is eligible, please call us at 505-827-2806 and we will be happy to review it with you. Bonus points are awarded for Green projects; information regarding Green projects can be found on our website. Technical Assistance is provided throughout the project. For an application click HERE, save the application to your computer to see fillable features. For more information click here or call the Construction Programs Bureau at 505-827-2806. ________________________________________ Stay Connected with New Mexico Environment Department Having trouble viewing this email? View it as a Web page. SUBSCRIBER SERVICES: Manage Subscriptions | Unsubscribe All | Help ________________________________________ This email was sent to whoughto@nmsu.edu using GovDelivery, on behalf of: New Mexico Environment Department · Harold L. Runnels Building · 1190 St. Francis Drive · Suite N4050 · Santa Fe, New Mexico 87505

New Mexico Wetlands Roundtable.

Greetings all, You are invited to the spring New Mexico Wetlands Roundtables. These events will be combined government agency/non-governmental organizations roundtables that are organized geographically, one in the north in Santa Fe (April 27, 2017) and one in the south in Las Cruces (May 16, 2017). You are invited to attend one or both of the meetings as they usually have different agendas and speakers.  Santa Fe, Thursday, April 27, 2017, from 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. at the Toney Anaya Building, 2550 Cerrillos Road, Rio Grande Room (2nd Floor) Santa Fe, NM (Note the Northern Wetlands Roundtable is not at the State Library but the Toney Anaya Building to the north on Cerrillos Road.)  Las Cruces, Tuesday, May 16, 2017 from 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. at the Las Cruces City Hall, 700 North Main Street, Room 2007-B&C (2nd floor), Las Cruces, NM We are in the process of developing agendas for these meetings so if you have any suggestions for topics to be discussed or would like to present, please let us know. We would include timely wetland topics as part of the presentation line-up. If you would like to present your wetlands-related work or initiative, please contact us so we can get you on the agenda. The New Mexico Wetland Roundtables are conducted as part of a Wetlands Program Development Grant from EPA Region 6 to foster partnerships and collaboration for the restoration and protection of wetlands and riparian resources in New Mexico. The roundtables are conducted on a semi-annual schedule and if you have not attended in the past, we would like you to see what the New Mexico Wetlands Roundtables are all about. There is no cost to attend. If your organization would like to sponsor refreshments, please let us know. For more information, contact Karen Menetrey (Karen.Menetrey@state.nm.us; 505-827-0194) for the Northern Roundtable or Emile Sawyer (Emile.Sawyer@state.nm.us; 505-827-2827) for the Southern Roundtable. The agendas will be sent to you soon. RSVPs are appreciated but not necessary. We look forward to seeing you at one or both of these meetings. Thank you, Maryann McGraw, Karen Menetrey and Emile Sawyer The NMED/SWQB Wetlands Program Team Maryann McGraw Wetlands Program Coordinator New Mexico Environment Department Surface Water Quality Bureau 1190 St. Francis Drive, Rm 2059 N P.O. Box 5469 Santa Fe, New Mexico 87502-5469 Phone: 505-827-0581 FAX: 505-827-0160

Thursday, March 9, 2017

Dan Lathrop

lathropobitServices for Dan Lathrop, who died December 21, 2016, will be held January 14, 2017, at 2 p.m. at the First Presbyterian Church, 201 5th Street, Dexter, New Mexico. Dan C. Lathrop was born March 18, 1957, to Charles Lawrence Lathrop and Annie Lee Blanchard. He lived for a short time in Hagerman and then moved to a house on the family farm and lived there all his life. He loved farming. He loved plowing, night irrigating and baling hay under a full moon. He loved growing chile. He loved castles, elephants and owls. He studied history, especially military history, and enjoyed Louis L’Amour westerns. Marty Robbins tunes and just about any country western ballad were on his play list — especially the sappy songs. His favorite sci fi novels were about a deformed wise guy named Miles Vorkosigan in books by Lois McMaster Bujold. He loved chick flicks — the tear jerkers. Dan attended public schools in Hagerman and Dexter, graduating Dexter High School as a National Merit Scholar and Valedictorian, class of 1975. He attended New Mexico State University graduating with highest honors and double Bachelor of Science degrees in Agri-Business Management and Farm & Ranch Management in 1979. He farmed from 1979 until [auth] 2002 raising chile, cotton, alfalfa and grain crops for cattle feed. When he became manager of the farm in 1986 he expanded its acreage. On August 1, 1992, he married Marilyn Woodburn, mother of four children, an instant family. The couple had two more children of their own. Dan loved children and could set them at ease with his warm, easy manner. He was Cub Master of Pack 19 in Dexter for 13 years and was willing to don any number of absurd get-ups for advancement ceremonies: plastic crown and velvet cape; a Samurai helmet and carrying the samurai sword his uncle had liberated in WWII; Indian headdress or a bear mask, just to name a few. He was Committee Chairman Troop 19, Rio Hondo District, Boy Scouts of America (BSA) and a Commissioner, Rio Hondo District, BSA. He helped many young boys become men. Dan represented the Hagerman Irrigation Company on the Pecos Valley Water Users Organization board starting in 1998. He chaired a sub-committee on the history of the Pecos and the Hagerman Canal. Woods Houghton describes Dan as a “voice of reason” in the sometimes heated arguments over water use in the lower Pecos Valley. Along with Dick Smith, Dan represented Region 10 on the Interstate Streams Commission’s advisory committee and was instrumental in the completion of the comprehensive plan for water use in the lower Pecos Valley in 2002. You’ll find him quoted in Patrick Dearen’s book, Bitter Waters: The Struggles of the Pecos River, a history of the Pecos River commissioned by the Pecos River Resolution Corp, an organization founded to study the Pecos River and report the findings. Dan served on the Pecos River Resolution advisory board. Few people know as much about the hydrology of the Pecos River and its history as Dan did. Dan began attending meetings with his father and later became president of the Hagerman Irrigation Company in 1992. Other positions in which Dan served: president of the Greenfield Mutual Domestic Water Users’ organization beginning in 1995; trustee, Hagerman Cemetery Association; Elder and member of session at the First Presbyterian Church, Dexter, and commissioner to Sierra Blanca Presbytery. Before that, Dan served as vice president of the church council for the First Methodist Church, Dexter. Dan was a member of the Dexter School Board for 12 years. In 2001, Dan suffered an aortic dissection of his entire aorta. The survival rate for such an event is zero, except for Dan. God performed many miracles to keep Dan here until his race was finished. He was a walking testimony of the power and love of God. The aortic dissection and the aneurysm that appeared the following year eventually pushed Dan out of farming. He lived with a constant headache for 16 years and most of the time nobody knew it. Even as he mourned forced retirement from farming, he kept true to his motto, “Do what you can do.” Now, as King David said, “He cannot return to me, but I may go to him.” In that hope we live and carry on the work of the Kingdom of God — which is Serve Others in Love. Dan’s parents preceded him in death. He is survived by his brother, Robert Lathrop and sister-in-law, Karen; wife, Marilyn; children, Philip Killough, Eve (Turkle) Wisniewski, John Turkle, Aaron Turkle, Charles Lathrop and Daniel Lathrop; daughters-in-law, Cynthia (Baca) Killough and Elisabeth (Pacheco) Turkle and future daughter-in-law, Adriana Gonzales; grandchildren: Nathan and Natalie Turkle; Arayla and Max Wisniewski. Also surviving him are many cousins, nieces and nephews. Arrangements have been entrusted to Ballard Funeral Home and Crematory. An online registry can be accessed at ballardfuneralhome.com.

Wednesday, March 8, 2017

RITF-85: An Introduction to NEPA: The National Environmental Policy Act of 1969

RITF-85: An Introduction to NEPA: The National Environmental Policy Act of 1969 Douglas S. Cram (Assistant Professor/Extension Forestry and Fire Specialist, RITF, NMSU) Nicholas K. Ashcroft (College Assistant Professor/Extension Range Management Specialist, RITF, NMSU) Samuel T. Smallidge (Associate Professor/Extension Wildlife Specialist/RITF Coordinator, RITF, NMSU) Les P. Owen (Director of Conservation Services Division, Colorado Department of Agriculture) http://aces.nmsu.edu/pubs/_ritf/RITF85.pdf

Friday, March 3, 2017

New Mexico Tech Graduate Student Contributes to Statewide Water Assessment Initiative

New Mexico Tech Graduate Student Contributes to Statewide Water Assessment Initiative by Catherine Ortega Klett, NM WRRI Program Manager Peter ReVelle, NM Tech master’s degree graduate student in hydrology, has played an important role in NM WRRI’s Statewide Water Assessment initiative. Peter is a member of the groundwater recharge study team that is developing a model that estimates diffuse groundwater recharge for the entire state of New Mexico. Diffuse recharge is the proportion of precipitation that infiltrates vertically through the soil and past the root zone to potentially contribute water to the groundwater system. In order to better quantify groundwater recharge in mountainous regions where a large proportion of the state’s recharge occurs, Peter developed a model that applies topographic-based adjustments to remote sensing products to provide an improved energy product suited for complex terrain that is being used in the model. According to groundwater recharge team member NM Tech Emeritus Professor Fred Phillips, “Peter is a great student and did an amazing job programming up the energy-balance part of the evapotranspiration model.” Peter is scheduled to graduate with a master’s degree in the spring. His thesis research has focused on using remote sensing algorithms to determine the surface energy balance in mountain terrain environments to improve estimates of water losses from vegetation and soil evaporation, and to evaluate the effect of tree thinning on the amount of water lost. Born in DeKalb, Illinois, Peter moved to Los Alamos, NM at the age of eight. He earned an undergraduate degree in environmental science with an option in hydrology at NM Tech in 2012. After graduation, he looks forward to pursuing a second master’s degree in geospatial Information science and technology.

Students Develop Innovation in Hydropower Generation

Students Develop Innovation in Hydropower Generation by Catherine Ortega Klett, NM WRRI Program Manager NMSU students in the Klipsch School of Electrical and Computer Engineering, under the guidance of Associate Professor Dr. Nadipuram Prasad, recently completed a project entitled, Hydro-Weir: A technology for low-head hydropower generation. The project was funded by a NM WRRI Student Water Research Grant. The students were able to use 3D printing technology to show the feasibility of manufacturing functional hydropower harvester prototypes for laboratory testing. This was a first step toward full-scale prototype manufacturing. The project aimed to develop a 200W hydropower harvester to harness energy from weir-flow systems. A weir is a barrier across a river designed to alter the flow characteristics, usually a horizontal barrier across the width of a river that pools water behind it while still allowing steady flow over the top. The objective of this project was to design and fabricate a laboratory scale prototype at the lowest cost. The size and shape had to conform to simulated weir-flow characteristics in the NMSU hydraulics laboratory. The students were successful at showing for the very first time that a scale model hydropower harvester prototype can be fabricated using 3D printing technology. Not only does this technology lower the generation cost, but it also minimizes environmental impacts of hydropower development. Results from tests will be published in water power journals. In addition to being a successful Senior Design Capstone project in the undergraduate program of the Klipsch School, funding allowed Juan R. González, to earn a master’s degree in electrical engineering. Juan worked with Dr. Prasad in preparing the final report, which is available by clicking here.

NMSU Grad Student Studying Economic Impact of Water Conservation,

NMSU Grad Student Studying Economic Impact of Water Conservation, Storage Capacity Development, and Crop Diversity in the Tucumcari Project of East-Central New Mexico by Catherine Ortega Klett, NM WRRI Program Manager The Tucumcari Project surrounding the city of Tucumcari, NM, includes about 41,000 acres of irrigable land. Principal features include the Conchas Dam and Reservoir, built on the South Canadian River, plus the Conchas and Hudson Canals, and associated distribution and drainage systems. This water storage and distribution facility constitutes an irrigation district named after Mr. Arch Hurley, who lobbied for its creation in the 1930s. For over half a century, the Arch Hurley Conservancy District (AHCD) has used the approximately 40 miles of main canal and 350 miles of smaller ditches and laterals constructed as part of the Tucumcari Project to deliver water, on average, to almost 700 different parcels of irrigated lands. And for just as long it has been recognized that there are significant water losses in the system, due to such realities as evaporation, canal seepage, and evapotranspiration by canal bank vegetation. Befekadu Habteyes, a PhD student in the NMSU Department of Ag Economics and Ag Business and in the Water Science Management Program, in collaboration with his faculty advisor, Dr. Frank Ward, is conducting a field survey and economic modeling analysis of the AHCD, taking into account the possible effects of different crop choices and of water conservation and storage policies. Read more

Next meeting 10 March 2017 @ 10:00

The next quarterly meeting will be March 10 Friday at 10:00 am in the conference room of the Artesia Agriculture Science Center. Proposed Agenda: Pecos Valley Water Users Organization Meeting Agenda March 10, 2017 10:00 Type of Meeting: Quarterly business meeting Meeting Facilitator: Woods Houghton Invitees: all water users in lower Pecos. I. Call to order II. Roll call III. Approval of minutes from last meeting IV. Open issues a) Current balance b) Dialog group state water plan 12 January17 - Eric c) Texas Horn shell muscle, does anyone have an update? V. New business a) Where do we go from here b) Elect Officers for 2017-18 c) From the group VI. Adjournment If you have another agenda item e-mail me. whoughto@nmsu.edu

Monday, February 27, 2017

Quaterly meeting.

A few Items to discuss. Including the water plan, the process of the water plan. Here is the link to the doodle poll. Quarterly meeting http://doodle.com/poll/r8tntkbmuruh8cem

Wednesday, February 15, 2017

TEN STEPS TO A SUCCESSFUL VEGETABLE GARDEN

TEN STEPS TO A SUCCESSFUL VEGETABLE GARDEN It is that time of the year when people start thinking about vegetable gardening. The same basic steps are used no matter the size or shape of your garden. Step 1. Select a good location, in Eddy County that means a place without rocks if possible. You want an area with good sunlight and I like to have some afternoon shade just because it gets so hot. If you don’t have shade plant your taller crops like corn on the west side of the garden. Step 2. Plan your garden out. Planning ahead will help avoid problems and make your garden easier to work in. I recommend people keep a journal from year to year; this is true for farmers as well. Measure and write down the size of the garden and any containers you may plan on using. I am a visual person so I like to draw out my garden on paper. Decide what vegetables species you want to grow. Mark them out on the paper with room for the plant growth, especially vine plants like watermelons and squish. Step 3: Grow recommended varieties for Eddy County. The Extension office gives two publications away that you may want Circular 457, Gardening in New Mexico and Circular 457-B Growing zones and crop varieties for home vegetable garden. These are both available on line as well. Step 4: Obtain good seed, plants, equipment and supplies. I tell everyone but don’t always do it make a list with alternate varieties before you go shopping. Try not to impulse buy too much, but it is fun to experiment and try different item. Buy from reputable suppliers. Step 5: Prepare and care for the soil. The most important thing you can do to Eddy County Soil is add organic matter. Soil sample and fertilize at the correct abount. Step 6: Plant you vegetables at the correct time and at the correct spacing, usually it is on the seed package or our garden guide. Step 7: Irrigate with care. Rainfall is supplemental to irrigation in Eddy County. Because you planned out your garden you have plants with similar water need near each other. Step 8: Mulch and cultivate to control weed. Get the weed when they are small, the more you mulch the less you have to weed. Step 9: Be prepared for pest and problems, spend time out in your garden and observe, if you see an insects or plants in distress, find out what it is and why. Step 10: Harvest at peak quality, after all this work you do not what it to immature or to mature. For more details than I can write in this article see Circulars 457-A and B. Also I will be adding a few article as the growing season progresses. Eddy County Extension Service, New Mexico State University is an equal opportunity/affirmative action employer and educator. All programs are available to everyone regardless of race, color, religion, sex, age, handicap, or national origin. New Mexico State University, U.S. Department of Agriculture, and the Eddy County Government Cooperating.

Monday, February 13, 2017

Wildlife water project draws partners together

Wildlife water project draws partners together Ruidoso News By Dianne L Stallings …The project involved a partnership of multiple agencies, a working rancher with a science background and volunteers willing to invest their muscle and sweat to finish the on-ground installation. The result will benefit wildlife and livestock in a self-sustaining network of a productive well, storage, pumps, a float box, overflow pipes, tough and dirt tank…"We’ve done a lot of improvements on the ranch that have helped the wildlife tremendously and that’s where the idea for this came from. Everything we do for wildlife obviously helps livestock as well. We’ve added a lot of small little ponds for surface water and in doing so, we’ve seen a tremendous increase in wildlife populations during the drought, everything from quail and rabbits all the way up to antelope and deer."

Friday, February 3, 2017

Year planning for Eddy County Extension Agricurture programs

It the first part of the Year and I was wondering if there were any particular educational program you would like us to schedule or set up. Examples would be Wildlife issue programs like Predators, gophers, deer any thing along those lines. Livestock program, Beef quality assurances, etc. Think about it and if there is something that would help you do a better job of feeding, supplying our nation let me know, either by comments or email or give me a call.

This year's fee, which goes into effect March 1, will be 24 cents lower than the 2016 fee FMN Grazing 020

This year's fee, which goes into effect March 1, will be 24 cents lower than the 2016 fee FMN Grazing 0202 (Photo: Courtesy of Jacob Chavez) 92 CONNECTTWEETLINKEDINCOMMENTEMAILMORE FARMINGTON — The Bureau of Land Management has announced a reduction in the federal grazing fee for 2017. This year's fee, which will go into effect March 1, will be $1.87 per animal unit month for BLM-administered lands and $1.87 per head month for lands managed by the U.S. Forest Service, according to a BLM press release. The grazing fee last year was 24 cents higher at $2.11. One animal unit month or head month represents the use of public lands for one month by one cow and her calf, one horse or five sheep or goats, the release states. Jacob Chavez lives in Turley and operates Majestic Enchantment Fly Fishing on the San Juan River. He and his family also graze 60 to 80 beef cattle on public and private lands at various sites in Blanco and their farm in Turley. Chavez said the fee reduction is welcome news. "Every little bit helps us," he said. "Especially in this economy, the cost of feeding and branding the cows can get expensive." Chavez, who also grows alfalfa to feed his cattle, said falling beef prices have been hard on the ranching portion of his business. “Prices are just not where they need to be," he said. "But we're fifth-generation ranchers and have been here since 1906 — it's in our blood.” Jacob Chavez "Prices are just not where they need to be," he said. "But we're fifth-generation ranchers and have been here since 1906 — it's in our blood." A larger cattle operation is run by Patrick Montoya, who also lives in Blanco. He and his family own four beef cattle ranches near Gobernador and have about 900 cattle that graze on BLM and Forest Service land in New Mexico and Colorado. "I think (the fee reduction) is going to help," Montoya said. "Anything that is cheaper as far as money out of your pocket is a plus." Montoya said the fee decrease is significant. And he said it's uncommon to see such a dramatic decrease in grazing fees. Like Chavez, Montoya said the price he's paid for his beef is low, but store prices remain high. For a 600-pound steer, Montoya said he receives $1.50 per pound, and for a 600-pound heifer, he receives $1.30 per pound. "Two years ago, it was much higher," he said. "I just wish they'd do something about the prices in the store — those prices are still high." According to the BLM release, the grazing fee is determined by a congressional formula. It applies to nearly 18,000 grazing permits and leases administered by the BLM, as well as almost 6,500 permits administered by the Forest Service. The fee applies to 16 western states, including New Mexico, Colorado, Arizona and Utah, for public lands administered by BLM and the Forest Service. Each year, the grazing fee is determined by using a 1966 base value of $1.23 per animal unit month or head month for livestock grazing on public lands in those western states. "This figure is then calculated according to three factors — current private grazing land lease rates, beef cattle prices and the cost of livestock production. In effect, the fee rises, falls or stays the same based on market conditions, with livestock operators paying more when conditions are better and less when conditions have declined," the BLM release states. BLM officials could not be reached for comment today. Leigh Black Irvin is the business editor for The Daily Times. She can be reached at 505-564-4621.

Thursday, February 2, 2017

USEPA Biosolids/Sludge Training

Surface Water Quality Bureau Our mission is to preserve, protect, and improve New Mexico's surface water quality for present and future generations. ________________________________________ USEPA Biosolids/Sludge Training Surface Water Quality Bureau has been asked to share information from USEPA Region 6 on electronic reporting for the Biosolids Annual Program and upcoming training schedule. Biosolids Electronic Annual Program Report Training will provide participants with an overview of Biosolids Annual Report and background information to the eRule and how it affected the development of the Electronic Biosolids Form. The training will explain the Central Data Exchange (CDX) registration process and how to complete the NPDES ID security form, as well as provide a demo of how to complete the Electronic Biosolids Form. The next training date is February 8, 2017 (12 to 2 pm Mountain). For more information and registration, see USEPA’s NeT Biosolids web site at https://epanet.zendesk.com/hc/en-us/sections/207108787-General-Biosolids. Interested in more PSRS/NPDES updates? Join our new PSRS/NPDES email list here. ________________________________________ POINT SOURCE REGULATION SECTION CONTACT: Sarah Holcomb 505-827-2798 https://www.env.nm.gov/swqb/PSR/

Friday, January 20, 2017

NMSU Media Productions develops outreach materials on water management, irrigation techniques

NMSU Media Productions develops outreach materials on water management, irrigation techniques DATE: 01/19/2017 WRITER: Amy Smith Muise, 575-646-1073, smiamy@nmsu.edu CONTACT: Jeanne Gleason, 575-646-5658, jgleason@nmsu.edu New Mexico State University’s Media Productions is part of a prestigious integrated USDA-National Institute of Food and Agriculture project to explore the safe use of nontraditional irrigation water on food crops. Maintaining agricultural water security is critically important to the continued sustainable production of our nation’s food supply. In support of this goal, farmers may choose to conserve their groundwater by the safe use of nontraditional irrigation water. At the same time, the recent Food Safety Modernization Act has increased the focus on preventing foodborne contamination. To meet stricter guidelines for the quality of irrigation water used on food crops, producers need up-to-date information and transformative on-farm solutions. Funded by USDA-NIFA and managed at the University of Maryland School of Public Health, this multidisciplinary, multistate team is addressing this need through CONSERVE (COordinating Nontraditional Sustainable watER Use in Variable climatEs): A Center of Excellence at the Nexus of Sustainable Water Reuse, Food and Health. The CONSERVE project includes research, Extension and education activities and will reach out to farmers, communities, educators, students and federal, state and local governments. CONSERVE is focusing on two key regions, the Mid-Atlantic and Southwest. These two diverse climates each have regional agricultural water challenges that are exacerbated by climate change. Currently, NMSU Media Productions is working to create animated modules to communicate key underpinnings of the project as the basis for educational curricula and outreach materials to support producer and community understanding of nontraditional irrigation water practices. “For more than a decade, our team has partnered with national experts to promote new agricultural production and process techniques that allow consumers to enjoy fresh, raw produce while minimizing food safety concerns,” said Jeanne Gleason, head of NMSU’s Media Productions. “With this new project, we will work with even more national and international scientists to develop educational programs promoting the project’s new water management and irrigation techniques that will protect and extend our limited water supply while supporting consumers’ access to safe raw fruits and vegetables produced in a more sustainable way.” Gleason and Barbara Chamberlin are co-directors of NMSU’s $586,500, four-year, grant-funded project that will fund their Media Productions team to develop part of the national team’s educational programs for diverse national audiences, including K-12 classrooms, university students, agricultural producers, irrigation districts and food suppliers. - 30 - Follow NMSU News on Twitter: http://twitter.com/nmsunews Follow NMSU News on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/NMSUNews

Monday, January 9, 2017

MALTA STAR-THISTLE INVASION

MALTA STAR-THISTLE INVASION Malta star-thistle (Centaurea melitensis L.) was first found in Eddy County around 2003 or so along the truck by pass in Carlsbad. I carry a hoe in the truck for such occurrence and have rouged out a number of new invasive weed when I see them. I was too late for this one however; I did rouge out a patch only to find 20 or more patches down the highway. Since that time this weed has been the target of the Eddy County weed management group who have done their very best to stop this weed. The fact it has taken 13 years for it to become a major concern is a testament to their work. But like the Russian thistle (tumble weed) it can now be found in the just about everywhere in the county and is moving from disturbed site such as road sides into fields and landscapes. It is a winter annual with a spiny yellow flowered head that reaches about 3 feet higher but under good growing condition can reach 4 feet. The spins are less than an 1.5 inches, which distinguishes it from its cousin yellow star-thistle. It reproduces by seed and can produce 1-60 seeds per flowering head. The leaves are withered usually by flowering time. This is a tricky weed though. It germinates in the fall, like the mustard, as soon as it has two true leaves it bolt and send up one flower that will have 1-5 seed in all less than 3 inches tall. So it is difficult to mow this flower off and it a guaranteed species survival for another year or more. There have been six biological control insects released for yellow star thistle. These insects feed on the seed thus reducing seed production. It is a wait and see if they can also help with Malta, so far as I know we don’t have any in the state yet. Chemical control if applied at the right time of year works well. The systemic herbicides clopyralid or picloram work well when applied between December and April in rangeland or roadside applications. These chemicals will kill trees and other desirable broad leaf plants. Once the flower is set, chemical application don’t do the job. In alfalfa fields the use of the mustard herbicides when there are mustard weed present may help. Clorpyralid and picloram will kill alfalfa and other perennial broad leaf plants like pecan trees, so you cannot use them. Sheep and goat like to graze this weed until it gets the spiny flower. It has no toxic effect but once the spine form they can lodge in the mouth and tong causing problems; however most animals will not try it. Cattle don’t seem to have any desire to feed upon it at any stage. This weed is almost imposable to control by mechanical methods. For homeowner in landscape situations all you can do is hoe of cut the tops off catching the seed head and disposing them in a dumpster, but as described earlier there are those survival seeds that are produced without much notice. Because of flooding in the past there is a lot of seed in the fields and if you do not spry for mustard it will get worse. The seed will not germinate until late fall. You can control the mustard and this weed too hopefully with good applications. Subscribe to Eddy County Ag news at: http://nmsueddyag.blogspot.com/ Eddy County Extension Service, New Mexico State University is an equal opportunity/affirmative action employer and educator. All programs are available to everyone regardless of race, color, religion, sex, age, handicap, or national origin. New Mexico State University, U.S. Department of Agriculture, and the Eddy County Government Cooperating.

Friday, January 6, 2017

EPA Releases Final Analysis of Metals Released from Gold King Mine in the Animas and San Juan Rivers

EPA Releases Final Analysis of Metals Released from Gold King Mine in the Animas and San Juan Rivers WASHINGTON – Today, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) posted the final fate and transport report for the Gold King Mine (GKM) release. The report focuses on understanding pre-existing river conditions, the movement of metals related to the GKM release through the river system, and the effects of the GKM release on water quality. The research supports EPA’s earlier statements that water quality in the affected river system returned to the levels that existed prior to the GKM release and contamination of metals from the release have moved through the river system to Lake Powell. "This report is a comprehensive analysis of the effects on water quality from the Gold King Mine release," said Dr. Thomas A. Burke, EPA's Science Advisor and Deputy Assistant Administrator of EPA's Office of Research and Development. “While data indicate that water quality has returned to pre-event conditions, EPA is committed to continue our work with States and Tribes in the river system affected by the Gold King Mine release to ensure the protection of public health and the environment.” The area affected by the Gold King Mine release consists of complex river systems influenced by decades of historic acid mine drainage. The report shows the total amount of metals, dominated by iron and aluminum, entering the Animas River following the release --- which lasted about nine hours on August 5, 2015 --was comparable to four to seven days of ongoing GKM acid mine drainage or the average amount of metals carried by the river in one to two days of high spring runoff. However, the concentrations of some metals in the GKM plume were higher than historical mine drainage. As the yellow plume of metal-laden water traveled downstream after the release, the metal concentrations within the plume decreased as they were diluted by river water and as some of the metals settled to the river bed. There were no reported fish kills in the affected rivers, and post-release surveys by multiple organizations have found that other aquatic life does not appear to have suffered harmful short-term effects from the GKM plume. The concentrations of metals in well-water samples collected after the plume passed did not exceed federal drinking water standards. No public water system using Lake Powell as a source of drinking water has reported an exceedance of metals standards since the release. Some metals from the GKM release contributed to exceedances of state and tribal water quality criteria at various times for nine months after the release in some locations. Metals from the GKM release may have contributed to some water quality criteria exceedances during the spring 2016 snow melt. Other exceedances may reflect longstanding contributions of metals from historic mining activities in the region and natural levels of metals in soils and rocks in the area. EPA will continue to work with states and tribes to interpret and respond to these findings. Results from this analysis will inform future federal, state and tribal decisions on water and sediment monitoring. EPA will continue to work with states and tribes to ensure the protection of public health and the environment in the river system affected by the Gold King Mine release. Read the final report, “Analysis of the Transport and Fate of Metals Released From the Gold King Mine in the Animas and San Juan Rivers”: https://cfpub.epa.gov/si/si_public_file_download.cfm?p_download_id=530074 Read the report’s executive summary: https://cfpub.epa.gov/si/si_public_file_download.cfm?p_download_id=530075 More information on the Fate and Transport analysis: https://www.epa.gov/goldkingmine/fate-transport-analysis More information on the 2015 Gold King Mine incident: https://www.epa.gov/goldkingmine R005