Wednesday, December 20, 2017
USDA Forest Service is seeking grant applications for forest restoration projects on public and tribal lands in New Mexico
The USDA Forest Service is seeking grant applications for forest restoration projects on public and tribal lands in New Mexico by 5 PM, MST, Tuesday, February 27, 2018. “Approximately $3 million will be awarded under the Collaborative Forest Restoration Program this year in New Mexico,” said Southwestern Regional Forester Cal Joyner. “The Forest Service will provide grants of up to $360,000 for projects that will be implemented in four years or less.” The program encourages diverse organizations to collaborate on the design, implementation and monitoring of restoration projects on public and tribal lands. Grant money is available for projects on federal, tribal, state, county or municipal lands in New Mexico. By working together to apply for these grants, small business owners, conservation and environmental groups, community groups, tribes, universities and other organizations can help reduce the threat of wildfire, improve forest and watershed conditions and bring jobs and job training to local communities. Applications should reflect local and traditional knowledge in developing creative ways to reduce the number and density of small diameter trees on public lands. Proponents are encouraged to submit proposals for projects that facilitate landscape-scale, multi-jurisdictional efforts such as NEPA planning, landscape assessments or Community Wildfire Protection Plans. Tribes, state and local governments, educational institutions, private landowners, conservation organizations, non-profit groups, and other interested public and private entities are encouraged to apply. “Last year the Forest Service awarded $3.4 million for 10 CFRP grants,” said Joyner. “A technical advisory panel reviewed the applications and made recommendations to us on the applications that best met the objectives of the program.” For questions regarding the Program or to develop project applications, please contact one of the following program coordinators in your area: Forest, City Coordinator Phone Email Carson, Taos Raul Hurtado 575-758-6344 email@example.com Cibola, Albuquerque Ian Fox 505-346-3814 firstname.lastname@example.org Gila, Silver City Julia F. Rivera 575-388-8212 email@example.com Lincoln, Alamogordo Mark Cadwallader 575-434-7375 firstname.lastname@example.org Santa Fe, Santa Fe Reuben Montes 505-438-5356 email@example.com The Forest Service will be sponsoring grant writing workshops throughout New Mexico for those interested in learning more about the program and the application process. Contact the program coordinators listed above for more details. Information is also available at the Southwestern Region website at www.fs.usda.gov/goto/r3/cfrp. The Collaborative Forest Restoration Program 2018 Annual Workshop will be held on January 10-11, 2018 in the Jemez Rooms of the Santa Fe Community College, 6401 Richards Avenue, Santa Fe, NM 87508 (Jemez Rooms), 1-505-428-1000. The workshop is open to the public and there is no charge for attending. A separate email will be going out shortly with more information on the Workshop including the agenda. Thank you, Walter Dunn Walter Dunn, Program Manager Collaborative Forest Restoration/Southwest Ecological Restoration Institutes Forest Service Cooperative & International Forestry, Southwestern Region p: 505-842-3425 c: 505-301-1291 f: 505-842-3165 firstname.lastname@example.org 333 Broadway Blvd., SE Albuquerque, NM 87102 www.fs.fed.us Caring for the land and serving people Posted by Eddy County E
This is a notification that the public notice and associated federal comment period have been opened for the draft of the DS Rainmakers Utilities, LLLC ( NM0029238).
________________________________________ Draft Permit Public Notice Announcement This is a notification that the public notice and associated federal comment period have been opened for the draft of the DS Rainmakers Utilities, LLLC ( NM0029238). The permit, fact sheet/statement of basis and other associated information can be found at the following websites: https://www.env.nm.gov/swqb/PublicNotice/ and/or https://www3.epa.gov/region6/water/npdes/publicnotices/nm/nmdraft.htm The NMED Surface Water Quality Bureau, Point Source Regulation Section has opened the comment period for consideration in development of the State’s Clean Water Act 401 Certification of the draft permit per 220.127.116.111 NMAC. For this facility, if you have comments that you would like NMED to consider as the Clean Water Act Section 401 Certification is drafted, please send them to: Sarah Holcomb, Program Manager NMED SWQB Point Source Regulation Section PO Box 5469, Santa Fe, NM 87502 email@example.com 505-827-2798 For more information on the draft permit, contact the following assigned staff contact: Sandra Gabaldon NMED SWQB Point Source Regulation Section PO Box 5469, Santa Fe, NM 87502 Sandra.firstname.lastname@example.org 505-827-1041 ________________________________________ NMED does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, disability, age or sex in the administration of its programs or activities, as required by applicable laws and regulations. NMED is responsible for coordination of compliance efforts and receipt of inquiries concerning non-discrimination requirements implemented by 40 C.F.R. Part 7, including Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, as amended; Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973; the Age Discrimination Act of 1975, Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972, and Section 13 of the Federal Water Pollution Control Act Amendments of 1972. If you have any questions about this notice or any of NMED’s non-discrimination programs, policies or procedures, you may contact: Kristine Pintado, Non-Discrimination Coordinator New Mexico Environment Department 1190 St. Francis Dr., Suite N4050 P.O. Box 5469 Santa Fe, NM 87502 (505) 827-2855 email@example.com If you believe that you have been discriminated against with respect to a NMED program or activity, you may contact the Non-Discrimination Coordinator identified above or visit our website at https://www.env.nm.gov/non-employee-discrimination-complaint-page/ to learn how and where to file a complaint of discrimination.
________________________________________ Dear Partners in Water Quality, The New Mexico Environment Department's Surface Water Quality Bureau is requesting applications for Watershed-Based Planning Projects. The Request for Grant Applications (RFGA) was released on November 9, 2017, with applications due by 5:00 pm Mountain Time on January 18, 2018. Applications must be submitted via email as described in the RFGA. The RFGA is available online at https://www.env.nm.gov/surface-water-quality/wbp. Any questions or comments concerning this RFGA should be addressed in writing to the Watershed Protection Section Program Manager: Abraham Franklin Surface Water Quality Bureau New Mexico Environment Department P.O. Box 5469 Santa Fe, New Mexico 87502 Abraham.Franklin@state.nm.us Thank You, The Surface Water Quality Bureau ________________________________________ NMED does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, disability, age or sex in the administration of its programs or activities, as required by applicable laws and regulations. NMED is responsible for coordination of compliance efforts and receipt of inquiries concerning non-discrimination requirements implemented by 40 C.F.R. Part 7, including Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, as amended; Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973; the Age Discrimination Act of 1975, Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972, and Section 13 of the Federal Water Pollution Control Act Amendments of 1972. If you have any questions about this notice or any of NMED’s non-discrimination programs, policies or procedures, you may contact: Kristine Pintado, Non-Discrimination Coordinator New Mexico Environment Department 1190 St. Francis Dr., Suite N4050 P.O. Box 5469 Santa Fe, NM 87502 (505) 827-2855 firstname.lastname@example.org If you believe that you have been discriminated against with respect to a NMED program or activity, you may contact the Non-Discrimination Coordinator identified above or visit our website at https://www.env.nm.gov/non-employee-discrimination-complaint-page/ to learn how and where to file a complaint of discrimination.
NM WRRI Hosts Workshop on Desalination Efforts in the Mesilla Basin by Avery Olshefski, NM WRRI Program Coordinator New Mexico State University and the Bureau of Reclamation are in the second year of a five-year cooperative agreement that seeks to increase scientific knowledge and research expertise in the area of characterization, treatment, and use of alternative waters in New Mexico and the western U.S. The agreement is currently supporting nine NMSU research projects involving impaired water. The agreement also supports an annual community learning meeting with the goal of reaching out to the broader community potentially impacted by the research in order to elicit stakeholder input.
Produced Water Treatment Systems Market Will Generate New Growth Opportunities by 2020 By ram singh - October 25, 2017 241 0 Share on Facebook Tweet on Twitter Produced water contains a blend of inorganic and organic compounds and is produced during the extraction of oil and gas. In terms of administrative divisions, there is no separation between produced water and oil management. However, multiple stages within oil management cater to the management of produced water. Oil production companies try to reduce the amount of water produced during extraction as higher amount of produced water needs to be consequently treated and disposed. Conventional oil production techniques result in a large amount of produced water. It is estimated that the volumes of produced water across the globe will rise to nearly 340 bn barrels the end of 2020, indicating a massive leap from the nearly 202 bn barrels recorded in 2014. In a recent report, Persistence Market Research states that this significant rise in the global production of produced water will fare well for the global market for produced water treatment in the near future. The report states that the market will expand at a CAGR of 6.1% between the period of 2015 and 2020, rising from US$4.6 bn in 2015 to a revenue opportunity of US$6.0 bn by 2020. Vast Rise in Oil and Gas Exploration Activities to Drive Market The rapid growth of the world population is posing a challenge to the available drinking water supply. Since agriculture and energy production draw more freshwater and produce contaminated water in turn, the water which was once termed as waste is being perceived as a valuable resource. This is creating a need for the treatment of produced water. The potential of oilfield produced water to be a source of fresh water and rising environmental concerns are making produced water treatment a significant part of the oil and gas industry. The stringent legislations on the discharge of produced water into the environment are also driving the global market for produced water treatment systems. Increasing oil to produced water ratio, growing regulatory standards and water scarcity are key driving factors for the increased adoption of these systems. An increase in the rate of exploration of on-shore and off-shore oil and gas resources has also boosted the growth of the global produced water treatment market. The growing prevalence of fracking or land gas drilling through hydraulic fracturing has further augmented the growth of the market. Asia Pacific to Present Most Promising Growth Opportunities From a geographical perspective, the global produced water treatment market presently earns a significant share of its overall revenues from the North America market. Charting revenue worth US$1.73 bn recorded in 2015, the regional market is expected to account for over 41% of the overall market by 2020. A significant rise in oil exploration activities in the region and stringent government regulations regarding the release of treated and polluted water in larger water bodies have fuelled the need for effective produced water treatment systems in North America. In the near future, however, the market in Asia Pacific will likely to expand at the most promising pace in the global market, accosting for a significant share of the overall revenue generated by the global produced water treatment market by the end of 2020. The Asia Pacific produced water treatment market is envisioned to grow rapidly owing to a constantly reducing supply of usable water, especially across countries such as China and India. Request and Download Sample Report @ https://www.persistencemarketresearch.com/samples/12949
After a series of small to moderate earthquakes in central Oklahoma, two companies are being told to reduce the amount of wastewater they inject into the ground. About a dozen quakes have struck just south of Hennessey, about 45 miles (72 kilometers) northwest of Oklahoma City since Oct. 31, the largest being a magnitude 4.1. There are no reports of injury or severe damage. Oklahoma Corporation Commission spokesman Matt Skinner says Choate Disposal Service and Chaparral Energy were told to reduce their injection of wastewater in the area. Thousands of quakes have struck Oklahoma in recent years, many linked to the underground injection of wastewater from oil and natural gas production. Several oil and gas producers have been directed to close some wells and reduce injection volumes in others. The U.S. Geological Survey reported an another earthquake, one with a preliminary magnitude of 3.7, was recorded in central Oklahoma on Nov. 8. The quake struck at 5:47 a.m. near Covington, about 55 miles (89 kilometers) north of Oklahoma City. There are no reports of injury or severe damage. The temblor struck about 30 miles (48 kilometers) northeast of where a series of about a dozen earthquakes, including one of magnitude 4.1, have occurred since Oct. 31. Source: https://www.insurancejournal.com/news/southcentral/2017/11/09/470856.htm
Best water management practices in the Permian basin Water management in unconventional resource plays has become a critical topic over the last several years. To improve project economics, several best practices have begun to emerge. Barry Donaldson, TETRA Technologies The evolution of water management in support of unconventional resource plays has come in response to two main drivers: 1) increasingly expensive freshwater resources; and 2) rising regulatory pressure surrounding the disposal of produced fluids. Historically, the provision of fresh water to support fracturing operations was a relatively straightforward matter of rising costs and complicated logistics. As industrial, agricultural and residential users all continued to increase demand for limited freshwater resources, operators had to accept rising costs associated with acquiring the water needed for fracturing. As freshwater costs have risen, there has been a contemporaneous increase in regulatory pressure on operators, related specifically to the widely institutionalized practice of produced water disposal via injection wells. The regulatory climate surrounding water disposal wells has become much more stringent, with state regulators taking steps to mitigate the perceived impact of traditional produced and flowback water disposal on area communities. Following a magnitude 5.8 earthquake near Pawnee, Okla., in September 2016, 32 injection wells were capped. Another Oklahoma earthquake in November 2016 resulted in regulators shutting-in seven additional injection wells. In January 2017, California state regulators shut down 30 active injection wells in the Central Valley. For operators, these two factors make new water management practices essential to reduce costs and improve margins. With oil hovering around $50/bbl, operators are striving to heighten productivity and enhance efficiency during fracturing operations, which has further driven innovation in water management. In the current climate, properly managing water resources is a mission-critical aspect of overall project success. CHANGING ATTITUDES A 2013 study, conducted by Halliburton and XTO Energy1, concluded that produced water with total dissolved solids (TDS) levels as high as 285,000 mg/L (28.5% salinity) was shown to generate proper cross-linked rheology for hydraulic fracturing, similar to wells that were being treated with just 20,000 ppm (2% salinity). Further studies supported this finding, with researchers concluding that high TDS levels in produced water are much less of a limiting factor than total suspended solids (TSS) levels, which can be mitigated effectively through various filtering techniques. For operators concerned with rising costs, produced and flowback water—already at hand and available for repeated use—began to present itself as an attractive choice. Simple calculations supported this decision. If fresh water is used for fracturing operations, and all the produced water is injected into the ground, operators incur trucking, disposal, and storage costs, along with costs to acquire more fresh water for subsequent operations. With an average cost of $0.75/bbl for fresh water and disposal costs ranging from $0.50 to $2.50/bbl, it makes economic sense to reuse produced water rather than pay for fresh water. With a growing understanding of both the viability of recycled produced water as a replacement for fresh water, and the clear cost advantage associated with the use of recycled water, operators began to recognize produced and flowback fluids recycling as a key component of the overall water management plan for unconventional resources. Nowhere is this trend more apparent than in the Permian basin, where proactive water management is a central element of overall field development planning. In the region, operators are focusing on water handling facilities and systems that provide innovative and cost-effective water resources for stimulation operations. As the industry increasingly turns toward recycled fluids, certain best practices are beginning to emerge in produced and flowback water recycling. PLANNING FOR THE PERMIAN In 2017, operators used a record amount of water for fracturing operations in the Permian basin. To meet increased demand, companies are building dedicated water handling facilities and focusing on applying the best-available technologies and practices to provide water to the point-of-use in the field. Thanks to modern fracturing practices that include higher pressures, longer laterals, and new techniques—such as zipper fracing and simultaneous well completions—operators are investing in water gathering and treatment systems, so they can cut down on transportation and disposal costs, while maintaining the water resources that they require to complete their projects. The first challenge in water management is sourcing sufficient supply. Economics dictate locating sources as close as possible within a given operating area. A key best practice being established across the industry is utilizing non-freshwater sources when possible, including produced water, low-quality water from underground brackish reservoirs, and wastewater from industrial, power, and municipal plants. But these sources exhibit wide variabilities in water quality and consistency, requiring careful planning, treating, and processing before use in fracturing operations. However, new systems developed specifically for solving the high variability challenges inherent with non-potable water supplies make it possible to optimize water resources and minimize disposal volumes. These systems have demonstrated their value most clearly when processing brackish water in regions with limited fresh water resources. This salty water produced throughout the Permian basin has become a significant alternative water source in many unconventional plays. For instance, in the brackish water-bearing Santa Rosa formation, located at depths of 800 to 1,200 ft, operators are drilling dedicated Santa Rosa wells and treating brackish water to remove sulfates, magnesium, iron, solids and bacteria. The treated water ensures a suitable source for fracturing Wolfcamp, Spraberry and other unconventional play wells. Fig. 1. Permian basin water management infrastructure. BEST PRACTICES TETRA Technologies has been a leader in working with operators to implement best practices for water infrastructure planning in the Permian basin. At the core of the company’s water management strategy is a layout of components to support area operations. Figure 1 shows the water infrastructure arrangement employed by the company during a recent reuse project. This representative layout includes: 1) freshwater storage; 2) a produced water trunk line system; 3) gathering and treatment facilities for produced water; and 4) produced water storage and blending tanks. The entire arrangement is strategically located in proximity to several active fracturing locations (5). The planning that supports the development of this water infrastructure includes estimating produced water volumes over the life of the field, as well as frac water volumes required during the completion phase. Additional planning considers the stimulation fluid types to be employed and the types of treatment required to bring recycled frac water in line with project specifications. Each of these factors is an important element in the overall water treatment strategy. Produced water treatment. Produced water is pumped to a centrally located gathering and treatment facility, where it is stored in above-ground storage tanks and the process of recycling begins. Typically, produced water in the Permian arrives at the facility with high levels of TDS and TSS. Additional attributes include dispersed oil and grease, dissolved gases and bacteria, as well as traces of chemical additives used in production, such as biocides, scale and corrosion inhibitors, and emulsion and reverse-emulsion breakers. Fig. 2. A new water/oil separation unit. A total water analysis is a critical part of the job planning and identifies overall water compatibility to the frac fluid systems. This analysis forms the basis of the water treatment plan. Typically, the first level of treatment often involves traditional filtering methods to remove suspended solids and the application of biocides to control bacteria. A beneficial byproduct of a strong oxidizing biocide is its ability to remove iron and sulfides effectively, control TSS and residual oil, and improve the overall quality of the produced water for reuse and recycle. A second level of treatment is provided by TETRA Technologies’ new oil recovery after production technology, called Orapt, in a water/oil separation unit, Fig 2. This stand-alone, mobile unit accelerates the separation with the use of a chemical additive and can produce water with only trace amounts of oil at 50 to 100 ppm. The Orapt system allows operators to save money on disposal, while making money through the sale of captured oil. In several cases, the volume of reclaimed oil has almost paid for the Orapt technology. Fig. 3. An automated blending setup with: 1) freshwater inlet; 2) produced water inlet; 3) automated blending controller; and 4) blending manifold. Blending. One of the challenges addressed by the company relates to balancing produced water with other sources of water to meet final project specifications for the operator’s fracturing fluid system. The company designed a patent-pending water blending controller and its patented blending manifold to ensure that recycled water is consistent throughout the entire frac specification. The blending manifold allows operators to “dial in” their chemistries and work within a very narrow range. The automated blending setup is shown in Fig. 3. One of the main drivers influencing the success of recycled produced water is the TDS level and its consistency over a given stage. It is taken for granted that frac chemical systems can be tailored to work with high levels of TDS in the water. The amount of produced water that can be used in frac fluids now is essentially driven by the available volume and the cost of delivery. Often, there is not an oversupply of produced water aggregated in practical areas, so operators use a blend of alternative water and produced water. These new, sophisticated frac fluid systems perform optimally with water of uniform TDS and chloride levels. Large spikes over or under the nominally required TDS and chloride level will hinder cross-linking performance and reduce cost efficiency in the form of chemical over-usage, thus negating any savings realized through recycling produced water. The goal of blending is to use all of the available produced water, as it represents a known cost-savings under the right circumstances. To achieve optimal reuse, the blended water must have consistent quality and remain stable in terms of TDS and chloride concentrations. The most basic method employed to blend fluids is to pump known quantities of two or more components, in specified proportions, into a storage volume where simple diffusion takes place. Water is then pumped from the storage volume and sent to the frac in real-time. This basic blending scheme often results in stratification of the fluid in the tank or pit, as the denser produced water will settle to the bottom. As the suction of the transfer pump usually pulls from the bottom, the denser, higher TDS fluid will be pumped first. As the level drops in the tank, the TDS level will drop in the water being pumped to the frac. Additionally, if produced water is being trucked into the storage area while the frac is underway, the inevitable result is an ever-changing water quality. This common method is a batch process and, therefore, is difficult to accomplish effectively in a real-time frac transfer. Furthermore, this method usually increases blended-fluid variability that may result in screen-outs or unpredictable stimulation results. Fig. 4. An automated blending controller is part of the overall frac water blending system. Updated method. A more efficient technique has been adopted by TETRA Technologies for use in the Permian basin and elsewhere. This method incorporates the energy of the fluids moving through conduits in a turbulent fashion to promote the blending of the fluids. This approach is accomplished by pumping the constituents into a wye or multi-inlet manifold, where each input flow rate is controlled and, therefore, volumetric proportions are controlled. A level of homogeneous blending normally results, if the water transfer system design and hydraulic parameters promote turbulent flow after the blending apparatus. Using this method, real-time volumetric proportions are maintained, but TDS levels in the final fluid can vary as the source fluids vary. The company’s frac water blending system includes a patent-pending automated blending controller, coupled with a patented, on-the-fly blending manifold, Figs. 4 and 5. The combination of these units provides accurate parameter-based blending and consistent blend quality, whether directly filling frac tanks or transferring water to another location. This system permits accurate and consistent blending of different sources of water in real time, removing the need for intermediate storage. Fig. 5. A blending manifold is also part of the system. The company’s blending manifold provides consistent blend characteristics across all discharge ports. It comprises multiple inlet ports that discharge into the engineered blending chamber. The blended fluid then is distributed to the manifold body, where it exits through one main outlet for further transfer or through multiple, smaller ports typically used for filling frac tanks. Chemical injection ports also are available for adding chemical upstream of the blending chamber. The blending controller was developed to enable enhanced produced water recycling and, in some cases, to permit produced water reuse altogether. It effectively measures the prescribed blending parameter post-blend and automatically adjusts affluent flowrates locally to achieve the blended water setpoint. This measurement significantly reduces frac water quality variability, as any variation in either influent stream— whether it is caused by actual water-quality or flowrate variations—is mitigated by the controller changing the blend ratio in real time. The resulting frac-water blend remains within the acceptable parameter range with a maximized produced water portion, thereby optimizing reuse. Having this technology onsite also affords the opportunity to measure incoming water, as well as the blended water quality. The “pre” and “post” data points are logged and provide real-time trending. Having a visual reference of how the different waters evolve is invaluable, as unexpected events related to water quality can be predicted and mitigated by studying the trends. Logged data are used to provide job reports and verify that the system is performing as required. Also, blending data can be transmitted to SCADA systems for real-time monitoring. When something goes wrong downhole, water is often the usual suspect, so being able to demonstrate that the blend is on-target saves valuable time while troubleshooting problems on the frac. CONCLUSION In the Permian basin, the combination of different operators, frac companies, frac chemical schemes, and water qualities is ever-changing. Some companies do not consider high-level blending accuracy to be necessary in their circumstances. Others demand it. However, all parties now agree that cutting-edge water management in unconventional resource plays is vital to overall project success. Based on average water acquisition and disposal rates, every barrel of produced water reuse can save up to $2/bbl. On a recent job in support of four multi-well pads, the use of frac-water blending enabled the operator to increase produced water usage from 25% to 55%, with no impact on the fracture treatment, which led to more than 600,000-bbl reduction in freshwater usage over four pads. This reduction translated into $1.5 million in savings to the client, in water acquisition and disposal costs. REFERENCE Lebas, R.A., T.W. Shahan, P. Lord, and D. Luna, “Development and use of high-TDS recycled produced water for crosslinked-gel-based hydraulic fracturing” SPE paper 163824 presented at the SPE Hydraulic fracturing technology conference in The Woodlands, Texas, February 4–6, 2013.
New Mexico Water Dialogue 24th Annual Meeting January 11, 2018 8:00 am – 4:30 pm Indian Pueblo Cultural Center 2401 12th St. NW, Albuquerque BALANCING OUR WATER NEEDS: ADJUDICATION AND ALTERNATIVES The New Mexico Water Dialogue has been holding annual, statewide meetings for almost 25 years. For these many years, the focus has been on working to ensure that New Mexico has a reliable water supply. We have talked about how to plan, accountability, implementation, economics, declining water supply and increasing growth, adaptation and resilience, opportunities and challenges, conflicts, and political will. We can be proud that water management has improved over these years. But all is not solved. The state has yet to revise a skeletal water plan adopted in 2003, and there are statewide problems that have not been resolved, among them adjudications, federal mandates, interbasin water transfers, reliable data, and long-term water availability.
USDA, Department of Defense, and Interior partner to protect natural resources, enhance habitat and military training
USDA, Department of Defense, and Interior partner to protect natural resources, enhance habitat and military training 12/19/2017 04:00 PM EST Washington, D.C., Dec. 19 2017 – The Departments of Agriculture, Defense and Interior have designated southern Georgia as the newest Sentinel Landscape designed to protect natural resources, enhance habitat for several key species, and maintain military readiness. Through this partnership, more than 20 federal, state and local partners with similar goals work together to sustain working farms and forests, protect vital habitat for several important species and enhance military readiness. Building on a legacy of successful, collaborative land protection in Georgia, diverse partners have identified about 1.3 million acres as critical to helping the Sentinel Landscapes Partnership. ________________________________________
I attended part of the NM Town Hall meeting 13 December 2017. My comments are my personnel opinion and that alone they do not represent anybody but my self. New Mexico First does an excellent job and the process is really well done. The participation is skewed by those who have time and money to attend. A large percentage of the participants were like me a government employee. Also a majority of the participants were people who wanted water over those who had water. Agriculture was under represented, and production agriculture were extremely under represented. Those of us who did represent Agriculture, work for Agriculture producers. I wish more real Agriculture Producers were there. Urban interest had a greater representation than rural. Northern New Mexico had a much higher representation than Southern and Rio Grand Valley was much higher then Eastern or Western plains. If they do another one I hope it is held on the East Side like Roswell. The process was good, the facilitators were excellent, but participation is voluntary.
The U.S. Geological Survey has announced February 15, 2018, 5:00 pm EST, as the deadline for preproposals associated with its Water Resources Research National Competitive Grants Program. If you are interested in submitting a preproposal, please contact NM WRRI Director Sam Fernald (575-646-4337; email@example.com) or Cathy Ortega Klett (575-646-1195; firstname.lastname@example.org) as soon as possible. The preproposal and budget should be reviewed by NM WRRI no later than February 1, 2018. The U.S. Geological Survey in cooperation with the National Institutes for Water Resources is requesting preproposals for matching grants to support research on the topic of improving and enhancing the nation’s water supply, including evaluation of innovative approaches to water treatment, infrastructure design, retrofitting, maintenance, management, and replacement; exploration and advancement of our understanding of changes in the quantity and quality of water resources in response to a changing climate, population shifts, and land use changes; development of methods for better estimation of water supply, both surface and groundwater, including estimation of the physical supply and of the economic supply of water; development and evaluation of processes and governance mechanisms for integrated surface/ground water management; and the evaluation and assessment of conservation practices. This program provides university researchers with up to $250,000 for projects of 1 to 3 years in duration. It requires a 1:1 non-federal match. The intent of the program is to encourage projects with collaboration between universities and the USGS. Funds have not yet been appropriated for this program for FY 2018 and the Government's obligation under this program is contingent upon the availability of funds. The RFP at https://water.usgs.gov/wrri/FY_2018_RFP_104g.pdf gives information on past year funding including award amounts and funding success rates.
Monday, December 11, 2017
Southeastern New Mexico is facing water scarcity issues, and with an increased demand for freshwater, there is a need for alternative water sources in Eddy and Lea counties. New Mexico State University researchers are studying produced water quality spatial variability and analyzing alternative-source water in the Permian Basin. This site map shows the study area in Southeastern New Mexico and West Texas. (Image courtesy Kenneth “KC” Carroll) New Mexico State University researchers are studying produced water quality spatial variability and analyzing alternative-source water in the Permian Basin in Southeastern New Mexico and West Texas. This map shows the location of sample points in the three geo-structural regions of the Permian Basin. (Image courtesy Kenneth “KC” Carroll) Faculty and staff from New Mexico State University and the New Mexico Water Resources Research Institute teamed up with researchers from around the state for a feasibility study on the reuse of produced water last year. One of the most relevant findings from the study is that the most feasible use of produced water generated from the oil and gas industry is for that industry to reuse its own produced water, as opposed to using fresh water. Robert Sabie Jr., a geographic information systems analyst for NM WRRI, said this cost-effective solution would allow freshwater to be reserved for drinking water. “The focus of the project was to understand the opportunities for reusing treated produced water, both in and out of the oil and gas industry, in order to preserve the freshwater aquifers. Different water uses require different levels of treatment to attain an appropriate water quality. If the produced water is reused within the oil and gas industry, or for other uses with lower water quality standards, then we can use the cleaner, fresh aquifer water for drinking,” Sabie said. Kenneth “KC” Carroll, an associate professor of water resource management in the NMSU Department of Plant and Environmental Sciences, said the oil and gas industry in West Texas and Southeastern New Mexico produces large amounts of water. “One of the things we found is that the water produced with oil and gas can be up to 10 times the volume of oil and gas,” Carroll said. “It could be one-to-one, and sometimes no water is produced, but sometimes it’s a lot more.” With water shortages in the southeastern part of the state, it’s important that researchers identify alternatives to purchasing fresh water from farmers and to reinjecting produced water into the subsurface as a wastewater. “Southeastern New Mexico is an area that has water shortage issues and a threatened viability of agriculture,” Carroll said. “Although produced water is a wastewater, it is a large source of available water in a region where water scarcity is impacting agriculture.” Sabie said treatment technology is improving and it is becoming more common for the oil and gas industry to reuse its produced water. It behooves the industry to do so, as there are high costs associated with transporting, treating and injecting the water into designated injection wells. By reusing their own produced water, companies are able to use less costly and semi-mobile regulated treatment plants closer to the oil and gas extraction areas. Sabie was the project manager for the feasibility study, and NM WRRI Director Sam Fernald was the principal investigator. NMSU collaborators included Carroll, as well as Pei Xu, an associate professor of environmental engineering in the NMSU Department of Civil Engineering. “I’m interested in the environmental engineering aspects of produced water,” Xu said. “We need to find an engineering solution to solve the problem. Produced water is such an important topic for the industry, engineering, municipalities and regulatory agencies. The goal is to treat the water.” Xu said the feasibility study was made up of a large team, with each person working on a different aspect of the research. “My job was to investigate the treatment technologies and the cost to treat the water,” she said. “This is an ongoing project. Right now I’m working Dr. Yanyan Zhang, and we are evaluating the environmental toxicity of the produced water and the level of treatment needed to reduce the toxicity of that water. Our goal is to ensure the safe reuse of that produced water.” Carroll’s contributions included looking into how the hydrogeologic or geologic formation variability – how deep and which rocks the water comes from – will affect the produced water quality. He also researched the spatial variability of the produced water quality. “We mapped the salinity of the produced water across most of the Permian Basin at various depths,” Carroll said. “We found that not all produced waters are the same. Water in some areas can have salinity as low as approximately 10 grams per liter, but produced water salinity in some areas can be higher than 350 grams per liter. And seawater average salinity is approximately 35 grams per liter.” Carroll took the lead on studying the produced water geochemistry, which is the chemical composition of water in the Permian Basin formations that is being pumped to the surface. “In addition to salinity variations, we found quite a bit of variability in the type of salts dissolved in the waters,” he said. “We also discovered that a significant amount of water migrated deep into the Basin from the land surface, which enhances our understanding of the water flow behavior in deep subsurface basins like the Permian.” More details about the project can be found at https://nmwrri.nmsu.edu/produced-water/ The feasibility study resulted in several accomplishments. “Our biggest accomplishment was establishing a clearer picture on the regulatory framework,” Sabie said. “There are three state agencies in charge of regulating water – the Office of the State Engineer, the New Mexico Environment Department and the Oil Conservation Division. So, we got those agencies together and developed hypothetical use cases for produced water to characterize the ownership, jurisdiction agency for New Mexico, holder of liability, and permitting requirements.” The feasibility study also included researchers from Los Alamos National Laboratory, New Mexico Institute of Mining and Technology and New Mexico Energy, Minerals, and Natural Resources Department. Funding was provided by the Environmental Protection Agency through the New Mexico Environment Department.
Please save the date for EPA Region 6's 20th Annual Stormwater Conference, to be held in Albuquerque on August 19-23, 2018. This conference is open to all who are interested in stormwater management, including practitioners under EPA's Construction General Permit, Multi Sector General Permit for Industrial Stormwater Discharges, and entities permitted under EPA's Municipal Separate Storm Sewer System (MS4) permits. The formal Save the Date invitation can be viewed here: http://tamuk-isee.com/conferences/epa2018conference/. Conference information will be updated as the agenda is finalized. For additional questions about the conference, you may contact Nelly Smith with EPA Region 6 at (214) 665-7109 (email@example.com) or Denise Hornsby with Texas A&M University-Kingsville at (361) 593-3046 (firstname.lastname@example.org). Point Source Regulation Section Sarah Holcomb (505) 827-2798
Wednesday, November 22, 2017
State Water Planning Town Hall: Advancing New Mexico’s Water Future In partnership with the Interstate Stream Commission, New Mexico First will convene a two-day town hall deliberation to inform the update of the New Mexico State Water Plan. This event will bring together people from around the state to generate suggestions for the ISC. The town hall will focus primarily on supply and demand, water quality, infrastructure, legal issues, water planning and collaboration, and changing conditions. 13-DEC-2017 - 14-DEC-2017 Albuquerque More information and registration at: http://nmfirst.org/event-details/state-water-planning-town-hall-advancing-new-mexico-s-water-future
Udall, Heinrich Introduce Legislation to Help Acequias and Land Grants Better Access Federal Conservation Programs
Udall, Heinrich Introduce Legislation to Help Acequias and Land Grants Better Access Federal Conservation Programs WASHINGTON — U.S. Senator Tom Udall introduced a bill to help acequias and land grants in New Mexico access additional federal resources for water and resource conservation projects. The bill, Providing Land Grants and Acequias Conservation and Environmental Services (PLACES) Act of 2017, cosponsored by U.S. Senator Martin Heinrich, will allow acequias and land grants access to federal programs that provide funding and technical assistance to farmers to increase agricultural water efficiency and further conservation of soil, water and other natural resources. Udall and Heinrich have been long been working to help New Mexico's traditional communities access federal programs and funding for water and resource conservation projects. In 2014, the New Mexico delegation included a provision in the Farm Bill to allow irrigation associations, including acequias and land grants, to access Natural Resources Conservation Services’ (NRCS) grants through a partnership with the Regional Conservation Partnership Program (RCPP). It has been one of the most successful partnerships in the country, giving New Mexico farmers access to programs that help them implement conservation practices on their farms to conserve water, protect soil and assure that farmers have the tools needed to remain productive in the future. Udall's new bill will build on this success and allow acequias and land grants to apply directly for federal programs, including EQIP, which provides funding and technical assistance to farmers, and the Watershed and Flood Prevention Operations Program, which helps producers by improving off farm infrastructure to reduce soil erosion, enhance water supply and quality, increase wildlife habitat, and reduce damages from natural disasters. "New Mexico's traditional communities have long been good stewards of our land and have been an integral part of our state's water infrastructure since before statehood. These communities hold great historical and cultural significance in New Mexico," Udall said. "Water is critical to our economy and our ability to grow, but water scarcity is a real challenge in New Mexico. Finding solutions that make the most out of every drop — sometimes even twice — is a necessity. Through New Mexico's traditional communities, our ancestors have been managing New Mexico's water and land efficiently for generations, and we should be doing everything we can to support them, including giving them full access to the programs within the USDA. This bill will continue expanding access to federal programs to ensure that acequias and land grants have the tools they need to help New Mexico's farmers and ranchers make the most of every natural resource." “Our way of life in New Mexico depends on the health of our land and water. New Mexico’s acequia associations and land grants should be able to access important federal water and land conservation programs and resources just like any other irrigation districts,” said Heinrich. “I am proud to support this legislation to ensure New Mexico communities have the resources they need to make long-term resource plans on a landscape scale and conserve our vital natural resources for future generations.” The bill text is available here and a summary of the bill is available here. The legislation is supported by the New Mexico Acequia Commission, New Mexico Acequia Association, and the New Mexico Land Grant Council. “Acequias are the life-line of the cultural traditions, heritage and the economic base of New Mexico. Through acequias, our ancestors’ managed our water effectively, efficiently and fairly to provide a sustainable means to take care of their families for centuries," said Ralph Vigil, chairman of the New Mexico Acequia Commission. "This legislation will provide the acequias a much-needed tool to continue building economic sustainability in farming and ranching for our acequia communities.” “We greatly appreciate the work of our congressional delegation to improve acequia eligibility for conservation programs,” said Paula Garcia, executive director of the New Mexico Acequia Association. “Investment in agriculture will expand the availability of locally grown food and support the livelihood of farmers and ranchers in New Mexico’s acequia communities.” “Land grant communities are part of the unique cultural and agricultural heritage of New Mexico. Land grant governing bodies have managed their common lands for the benefit of their local communities for centuries," said Juan Sanchez, chairman of the New Mexico Land Grant Council. "Making community land grants eligible for programs like EQIP provides access to important resources that will further conservation and restoration efforts on land grant common lands, as well as generate new community and economic development opportunities. These activities will positively impact the socio-economic and ecological health of rural communities throughout New Mexico, and will provide lasting benefits for future generations.” ### Contacts: Jennifer Talhelm (Udall) 202.228.6870 / Whitney Potter (Heinrich) 202.228.1578
Monday, November 20, 2017
LAS CRUCES - Southeastern New Mexico is facing water scarcity issues, and with an increased demand for freshwater, there is a need for alternative water sources in Eddy and Lea counties. Faculty and staff from New Mexico State University and the New Mexico Water Resources Research Institute teamed up with researchers from around the state for a feasibility study on the reuse of produced water last year. Produced water is underground water brought to the surface during the drilling process. Treating of disposing of produced water creates an additional expense for oil companies. One of the most relevant findings from the study is that the most feasible use of produced water generated from the oil and gas industry is for that industry to reuse its own produced water, as opposed to using fresh water. Robert Sabie Jr., a geographic information systems analyst for NM WRRI, said this cost-effective solution would allow freshwater to be reserved for drinking water.
NEW MEXICO ENVIRONMENT DEPARTMENT, SURFACE WATER QUALITY BUREAU PROPOSES THE WITHDRAWAL OF THE TOTAL MAXIMUM DAILY LOADS (TMDL) FOR CHRONIC DISSOLVED ALUMINUM FOR WHITEWATER CREEK, RIO CHAMITA, AND RIO PUERCO
________________________________________ NEW MEXICO ENVIRONMENT DEPARTMENT, SURFACE WATER QUALITY BUREAU PROPOSES THE WITHDRAWAL OF THE TOTAL MAXIMUM DAILY LOADS (TMDL) FOR CHRONIC DISSOLVED ALUMINUM FOR WHITEWATER CREEK, RIO CHAMITA, AND RIO PUERCO. NOTICE OF A 30-DAY PUBLIC COMMENT PERIOD AND COMMUNITY MEETINGS The New Mexico Environment Department (NMED) Surface Water Quality Bureau (SWQB) invites the public to comment on three draft documents concerning the withdrawal of previously-approved Total Maximum Daily Load (TMDL) documents for chronic dissolved aluminum in Whitewater Creek, Rio Chamita, and Rio Puerco. These requests for TMDL withdrawal are necessary because the dissolved aluminum standard previously codified at 18.104.22.1680 NMAC no longer applies. In addition, the latest survey data indicate the applicable total recoverable aluminum standard is supported. The 30-day comment period on these documents will open November 20, 2017 and will close December 22, 2017 at 4:00 p.m. MST. Electronic copies of the draft documents are available at: https://www.env.nm.gov/surface-water-quality/. Comments for inclusion in the administrative record must be submitted in writing (email preferred) to Diana.Aranda@state.nm.us; Diana Aranda, NMED SWQB, P.O. Box 5469, Santa Fe, New Mexico 87502; or fax number (505) 827-0160. For additional questions regarding this public notice or if you have trouble accessing the above web address, contact Ms. Aranda at (505) 827-0669 or at the above email address. Community meetings will be held to summarize the proposed TMDL withdrawals and to provide a discussion forum for the public. The meeting details are: Whitewater Creek: November 29, 2017; 4:30-6:30 p.m.; NMED Silver City Office, 3082 32nd Street Bypass, Suite D, Silver City, New Mexico, 88061. Rio Puerco: December 4, 2017; 3:00-5:00 pm; Cuba Senior Center, 16-A Cordova St., Cuba New Mexico, 87013. Rio Chamita: December 13, 2017; 3:00-5:00 pm; Chama Village Hall, 299 West 4th Street, Chama, New Mexico 87520. Following the close of the comment period, copies of the respective Response to Comments will be sent to all persons who submitted written comments posted to the bureau’s website. The SWQB plans to request approval of the final TMDLs at the Water Quality Control Commission’s (WQCC) regularly scheduled meeting on March 13, 2018, or at the next available meeting. WQCC agendas are available at: https://www.env.nm.gov/water-quality-control-commission/wqcc/. Persons having a disability and needing help in being a part of this process should contact NMED, Human Resources Bureau, at least 10 days before the event, telephone 505-827-0424 or P.O. Box 5469, 1190 St. Francis Drive, Santa Fe, New Mexico, 87502. TDY users please access his number via the New Mexico Relay Network at 1-800-659-8331. ______________________________________________________________________________ LA OFICINA DE CALIDAD DE AGUAS SUPERFICIALES DEL DEPARTAMENTO DEL MEDIO AMBIENTE PROPONE RETIRAR LAS CARGAS MÁXIMAS TOTALES DIARIAS (TMDL, SIGLAS EN INGLÉS) DE ALUMINIO DISUELTO CRÓNICO EN EL ARROYO WHITEWATER, EL RÍO CHAMITA Y EL RÍO PUERCO La Oficina de Calidad de Aguas Superficiales (SWQB, siglas en inglés) del Departamento del Medio Ambiente (NMED, siglas en inglés) invita al público a ofrecer sus comentarios sobre tres documentos preliminares en torno al retiro de documentos relacionados con la Carga Máxima Total Diaria (TMDL) previamente aprobados de aluminio disuelto crónico en el Arroyo Whitewater, el Río Chamita y el Río Puerco. Estas peticiones sobre el retiro de la TMDL son necesarias porque el estándar de aluminio disuelto previamente codificado en el 22.214.171.1240 NMAC ya no se aplica. Asimismo, los datos más recientes de la inspección indican que el estándar de aluminio recuperable total aplicable es compatible. El periodo de 30 días para ofrecer comentarios sobre estos documentos se abrirá el 20 de noviembre de 2017 y se cerrará el 22 de diciembre de 2017 a las 4:00 p.m. hora de las montañas (MST). Copias electrónicas de los documentos preliminares están disponibles en: https://www.env.nm.gov/surface-water-quality/. Los comentarios a incluir en el registro administrativo deben ser enviados por escrito (de preferencia por correo electrónico) a Diana.Aranda@state.nm.us; Diana Aranda, NMED SWQB, P.O. Box 5469, Santa Fe, New Mexico 87502; o por fax al (505) 827-0160. Si tiene preguntas adicionales sobre este aviso público o si tiene problemas al tratar de acceder al sitio web arriba mencionado, comuníquese con la Srta. Aranda al (505) 827-0669 o al correo electrónico arriba mencionado. Las reuniones con la comunidad se llevarán a cabo para resumir el retiro propuesto de la TMDL y para proporcionar un foro público para conversar. Los detalles sobre las reuniones son los siguientes: Arroyo Whitewater: 29 de noviembre de 2017; 4:30-6:30 p.m.; NMED Silver City Office, 3082 32nd Street Bypass, Suite D, Silver City, New Mexico, 88061. Río Puerco: 4 de diciembre de 2017; 3:00-5:00 pm; Cuba Senior Center, 16-A Cordova St., Cuba New Mexico, 87013. Río Chamita: 13 de diciembre de 2017; 3:00-5:00 pm; Chama Village Hall, 299 West 4th Street, Chama, New Mexico 87520. Después del cierre del periodo de comentarios, se enviarán copias de las respectivas respuestas de los comentarios a todas las personas que enviaron comentarios escritos que se hayan publicado en el sitio web de la oficina. La SWQB tiene planeado solicitar la aprobación de las TMDL finales en la reunión regular de la Comisión del Control de Calidad del Agua (WQCC, siglas en inglés) programada para el 13 de marzo de 2018, o en la siguiente reunión que se programe. Las agendas de la WQCC están disponibles en: https://www.env.nm.gov/water-quality-control-commission/wqcc/. Las personas que tengan una discapacidad o que necesiten ayuda para tomar parte en este proceso público deberán comunicarse por lo menos 10 días antes del evento con la Oficina de Recursos Humanos de NMED en P.O. Box 5469, 1190 St. Francis Drive, Santa Fe, Nuevo México, 87502, teléfono 505-827-9769. Se les pide a los usuarios de TDY que se comuniquen con la Oficina de Recursos Humanos a través de la Red de Difusión de Nuevo México llamando al 1-800-659-8331. ________________________________________ NMED does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, disability, age or sex in the administration of its programs or activities, as required by applicable laws and regulations. NMED is responsible for coordination of compliance efforts and receipt of inquiries concerning non-discrimination requirements implemented by 40 C.F.R. Part 7, including Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, as amended; Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973; the Age Discrimination Act of 1975, Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972, and Section 13 of the Federal Water Pollution Control Act Amendments of 1972. If you have any questions about this notice or any of NMED’s non-discrimination programs, policies or procedures, you may contact: Kristine Pintado, Non-Discrimination Coordinator New Mexico Environment Department 1190 St. Francis Dr., Suite N4050 P.O. Box 5469 Santa Fe, NM 87502 (505) 827-2855 email@example.com If you believe that you have been discriminated against with respect to a NMED program or activity, you may contact the Non-Discrimination Coordinator identified above or visit our website at https://www.env.nm.gov/non-employee-discrimination-complaint-page/ to learn how and where to file a complaint of discrimination. El Departamento del Medio Ambiente de Nuevo México (NMED, por su sigla en inglés) no discrimina por motivos de raza, color, origen nacional, discapacidad, edad o sexo en la administración de sus programas o actividades, según lo exigido por las leyes y los reglamentos correspondientes. El NMED es responsable de la coordinación de esfuerzos para el cumplimiento de las reglas y la recepción de indagaciones relativas a los requisitos de no discriminación implementados por 40 C.F.R. Parte 7, que incluye el Título VI de la Ley de Derechos Civiles de 1964, como fuera enmendado; la Sección 504 de la Ley de Rehabilitación de 1973; la Ley de Discriminación por Edad de 1975; el Título IX de las Enmiendas de Educación de 1972; y la Sección 13 de las Enmiendas a la Ley Federal de Control de la Contaminación del Agua de 1972. Si tiene preguntas sobre este aviso o sobre cualquier programa de no discriminación, norma o procedimiento de NMED, puede comunicarse con la Coordinadora de No Discriminación: Kristine Pintado, Non-Discrimination Coordinator New Mexico Environment Department 1190 St. Francis Dr., Suite N4050 P.O. Box 5469 Santa Fe, NM 87502 (505) 827-2855 firstname.lastname@example.org Si piensa que ha sido discriminado con respecto a un programa o actividad de NMED, puede comunicarse con la Coordinadora de No Discriminación antes indicada o visitar nuestro sitio web en https://www.env.nm.gov/NMED/EJ/index.html para saber cómo y dónde presentar una queja por discriminación.
Friday, November 10, 2017
Are you interested in New Mexico’s water future? Sign up today for a two-day deliberative town hall to inform the next State Water Plan! This document is the primary policy guide for New Mexico’s water policy. As part of public engagement on the update of the plan, the upcoming town hall will be held December 13-14 in Albuquerque. Participants will engage in discussions on water issues and offer suggestions advising the Interstate Stream of significant changed conditions facing New Mexico’s water future. Registration opens for the State Water Planning Town Hall: Advancing New Mexico’s Water Future Are you interested in New Mexico’s water future? Sign up now for a two-day deliberative town hall to discuss a comprehensive update of the New Mexico State Water Plan. The State Water Plan is a critical guide for New Mexico’s water policy. The ideas offered through this town hall will advise the Interstate Stream Commission (in collaboration with the Office of the State Engineer and the Water Trust Board) of significant changed conditions facing New Mexico’s water future. Sponsored by the ISC and managed by New Mexico First, the town hall will focus primarily on supply and demand, water quality, infrastructure, legal issues, water planning and collaboration, and changing conditions. Sign-up today!
Monday, October 23, 2017
Horizontal drilling and upsized completions have fast-forwarded the oil and gas industry’s demand for water. At the same time, the lower for longer oil price recovery has placed ever more pressure on operators to cut costs, including for water, according to a new report, “Water for U.S. Hydraulic Fracturing,” from Bluefield Research. The report forecasts that at a flat rig count of 650, 20.8 billion barrels (bbl) of water will be required for hydraulic fracturing from 2017 through 2026. Last year, fracturing consumed more than 1.3 billion bbl of water and produced 574 million bbl of water for disposal. Investors and industry players are positioning to play a role in this growing water market. With operators drilling faster, and employing longer laterals, completions now require as much as 12 million bbl of water per frack—triple the volumes of five years ago, the Bluefield authors said. They project that water management, including water supply, transport, storage, treatment and disposal, will total $136 billion from 2017 to 2026 for the U.S. hydraulic fracturing sector. High reuse rates in the Marcellus and scaling Permian activity—where water per frack ratios are the highest—drove treatment spending to about $198 million in 2016 with an annual spend of $307 million expected for 2017. “Demand is rising exponentially, particularly in West Texas,” the authors said, “because of increased water volume per frack and an almost 30% reduction in time required to complete a well.” With water transport, both supplied and produced, rising in importance, the industry craves more pipeline networks and transport services, and a new midstream water sector is developing in response. “Several firms—Antero Midstream, Noble Midstream, Rice Midstream, NGL Energy—are leveraging their holding companies’ E&P footprints,” the report said. “At the same time, a new crop of market entrants, often backed by private equity, are staking out positions in select basins to capitalize on demand for water services.” The water company rolls have been diminished by the downturn, but a “select few” are rising from the ashes, according to Bluefield’s report. “Select Energy Services has filed an IPO, Nuverra remains on the edge of Chapter 11, while Fountain Quail and GreenHunter Resources have merged.” Texas and Oklahoma led the U.S. completed horizontal well count from 2011 to 2017, making them the most active markets for hydraulic fracturing and water demand. Bluefield excluded DUCs (drilled but uncompleted wells) from its forecasts; at the end of March 2017, 5,512 DUCs remained, according to DOE estimates. In Texas, oil prices, financial stress and rain have “eased the regulatory pressures in some instances,” the report said, making cost of transport the top concern. Some producers are tapping alternative supplies to enhance sustainability. In Oklahoma, earthquake concerns due to salt water disposal practices are fueling recycling efforts. Annual water demand by basin is led by the Permian, with 45% overall, the Eagle Ford, 12%, the Marcellus, 12%, the Cana Woodford, 8%, and the Haynesville, with 8%. In basins with plentiful access to saltwater disposal wells, like those in Texas and Oklahoma, treatment and reuse remains below 10%. Pennsylvania and Ohio, which have limited disposal well options and more challenging topography, have seen transportation and disposal costs rise as high as $20/bbl, according to Bluefield. This has prompted E&Ps to buy injection well assets, and another “key area of investment” has been the networking of disposal wells with pipelines across shale plays. E&Ps are investing in projects connected to wastewater plants, water recycling facilities and pipeline transport. As this still nascent water management and services value chain evolves, Bluefield is tracking several trends in particular: private water utilities leveraging their local presence; pure-play water service providers focusing on transport logistics, treatment and disposal; companies providing centralized treatment in the Marcellus; and increasingly, midstream energy service providers moving into water markets, often by leveraging their related E&P divisions. In other instances, private equity firms are backing midstream entities focused on the water value chain, with some carving out niches in individual basins. With only 6% of produced water currently being treated and reused, Bluefield projects this share will rise to 16% by 2026. Recycling of flowback water should hit 90% by the same period. And the dollars needed to fund this effort will continue to seed opportunity for investors. Susan Klann Susan Klann has more than 30 years of publishing experience, with more than half of those spent in oil and gas publishing with Hart Energy, most recently as group managing editor of Oil and Gas Investor. See full bio
Permian Basin Produced Water May Hit 1B Barrels Per Day Experts say produced water from the Permian Basin may hit 1 billion barrels per day within the next decade. July 4, 2017, at 10:53 a.m.
HOBBS, N.M. (AP) — Experts say produced water from the Permian Basin may hit 1 billion barrels per day within the next decade. The Hobbs News-Sun reports (https://goo.gl/zJXnaA ) New Mexico EnergyPlex Conference panelist Nathan Zaugg told attendees last week that the billion barrels per day estimate could fill Elephant Butte Lake in around 21 days. Produced water also contains heavy metals including zinc, lead, manganese, iron and barium. Zaugg, industrial group leader for Carollo Engineers of Salt Lake City, said his company and a New Mexico company are working together to address the problem with urgency. Ken McQueen, secretary for the New Mexico Energy, Minerals and Natural Resources Department, says companies now know the importance of recycling water, realizing brackish water as a source rather than using fresh water.
PECAN WEEVIL REGULATION DISCUSSION New Mexico Department of Agriculture and Eddy, Chaves and Lea County Extension Service will be conducting a discussion with Pecan growers and related industry business owner on October 26: Roswell 9:30 am Farm Bureau building Eastern Fair grounds. Artesia CVE 1:30 pm community room 13th and Richey street Carlsbad Eddy County Extension Office 6:30 pm 1304 West Stevens The purpose of the meeting is to discuss the current situation with Pecan weevil in New Mexico and proposed emergency regulations to contain this pest. There is limited space so if you wish to pre-register or if you are in need of special assistance due to a disability please contact the Eddy County Extension Office 887-6595 at least 1 day before the class. This and all programs are available to everyone regardless of age, color, disability, gender, national origin, race, religion, or veteran status. New Mexico State University, U.S. Department of Agriculture, and the Eddy County Government Cooperating “to put knowledge to work”.
Friday, October 20, 2017
One sorrel mare with star, small snip and left front sock. The livestock was/were found at: Kevil and Haston Road south of Carlsbad
The Following Found Livestock Notice Has Been Posted on the NMLB Website: NOTICE ID 2960 - 10/20/2017 The following described livestock was/were found by the NMLB without ownership being known: - Carlsbad, NM 88220 Brand(s) described on livestock: No Brand Please Contact Inspector Kenneth Whetham at 575-840-5374 if you have information regarding ownership of the described livestock. NOTICE EXPIRATION DATE: 10/25/2017 Livestock are being held in Eddy County DOCUMENTS AND/OR IMAGES: Notice ID 2960 Pic 1.JPG Notice ID 2960 Pic 2.JPG Notice ID 2960 Pic 3.JPG If you did not sign up for this mailing list or would like to be taken off of the list Click Here and your email address will be removed from our list.
________________________________________ VILLAGE OF RUIDOSO AND CITY OF RUIDOSO DOWNS REGIONAL WASTEWATER TREATMENT PLANT JOINT USE BOARD PROPOSES WATER QUALITY STANDARDS CHANGES FOR THE LOWER RIO RUIDOSO AND UPPER RIO HONDO IN LINCOLN COUNTY, NEW MEXICO NOTICE OF PUBLIC COMMENT PERIOD EXTENDED TO DECEMBER 19, 2017 The Village of Ruidoso and City of Ruidoso Downs Regional Wastewater Treatment Plan Joint Use Board (JUB) invites the public to comment on the draft Use Attainability Analysis (UAA) and proposed amendments to the surface water quality standards (20.6.4. NMAC) for the lower Rio Ruidoso and upper Rio Hondo in Lincoln County, New Mexico. As required by the federal Clean Water Act and the New Mexico Water Quality Act, the state has established water quality standards for its surface waters. Water quality standards (WQS) identify the water quality goals for a water body, or portion thereof, by designating the use or uses of the water and by setting criteria that protect those designated uses. A UAA is a scientific study that assesses the factors affecting the attainment of a designated use. In accordance with 40 CFR 131 and 126.96.36.199 NMAC, the JUB, with technical assistance from Environmental Science Associates, has conducted a UAA for the lower Rio Ruidoso and upper Rio Hondo in Lincoln County. The draft UAA along with the proposed water quality standards amendment under 20.6.4 NMAC, are available on the New Mexico Environment Department, Surface Water Quality Bureau (SWQB) website at https://www.env.nm.gov/surface-water-quality/wqs/ The comment period for this proposal begins September 20, 2017 and has been extended to December 19, 2017 5:00 MST. Comments for inclusion in the public record must be submitted in writing to Jim Good at Environmental Science Associates, 5309 Shilshole Ave. NW, Suite 200, Seattle, WA, 98107; or by e-mail: email@example.com For more information, please contact Jim Good at 505-697-9831 or firstname.lastname@example.org ________________________________________ NMED does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, disability, age or sex in the administration of its programs or activities, as required by applicable laws and regulations. NMED is responsible for coordination of compliance efforts and receipt of inquiries concerning non-discrimination requirements implemented by 40 C.F.R. Part 7, including Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, as amended; Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973; the Age Discrimination Act of 1975, Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972, and Section 13 of the Federal Water Pollution Control Act Amendments of 1972. If you have any questions about this notice or any of NMED’s non-discrimination programs, policies or procedures, you may contact: Kristine Pintado, Non-Discrimination Coordinator New Mexico Environment Department 1190 St. Francis Dr., Suite N4050 P.O. Box 5469 Santa Fe, NM 87502 (505) 827-2855 email@example.com If you believe that you have been discriminated against with respect to a NMED program or activity, you may contact the Non-Discrimination Coordinator identified above or visit our website at https://www.env.nm.gov/non-employee-discrimination-complaint-page/ to learn how and where to file a complaint of discrimination. ________________________________________ NM WATER QUALITY STANDARDS CONTACT: Jennifer Fullam 505-827-2637 https://www.env.nm.gov/surface-water-quality/wqs/
Thursday, October 12, 2017
Monday, October 9, 2017
Optimizing Water Use to Sustain Food Systems Ogallala Water Coordinated Agriculture Project Website The challenges faced by Ogallala aquifer region producers are not confined by state lines. Neither are the solutions. Water. Whether it falls from the sky or is pumped from the Ogallala aquifer, is of central importance to the High Plains economy and way of life. Groundwater pumped from the Ogallala aquifer (the principal formation of the High Plains aquifer system) has transformed the region from a Dustbowl to an agricultural powerhouse. More than 30% of U.S. crops and livestock are produced in this region, significantly impacting domestic and international food supplies…The Ogallala Water Coordinated Agriculture Project, a multi-disciplinary collaborative effort funded by USDA-NIFA, is focused on developing and sharing practical, science-supported information relevant to best management practices for optimizing water use across the Ogallala region. MORE: http://ogallalawater.org/
Meeting informs public about water application El Defensor Chieftain By John Larson ...One question caught the co-facilitators off guard. “If this application from a multi-national company is approved, could [they] sell it to another multi-national company, say from Russia?” Besides questions, Myers read comments from the cards submitted. “This water appropriation should not happen...ranchers have senior water rights,” Socorro County rancher Randell Major commented. “This mining application has been unable to prove their pumping will not harm existing water rights. This has been going on for ten years and should be put to an end now.” More at; http://www.dchieftain.com/news/meeting-informs-public-about-water-application/article_12e769be-a946-11e7-9b0d-77c54c89c6b6.html
Friday, October 6, 2017
White sands Millitay and ranches LAS CRUCES - The dramatic history and transformation of White Sands Missile Range is the subject of this month’s Culture Series at the New Mexico Farm & Ranch Heritage Museum. “The Range: From Livestock to Missiles,” is set for 7 p.m. on Oct. 12 in the museum’s theater. The focus is ranching in the Tularosa Basin and in the San Andres and Oscura mountain ranges and how the ranchers lost their land to America's military needs. The speaker is Jim Eckles, who spent 30 years working in the public affairs office at the missile range. Admission to the presentation is free. During his time on the range, Eckles saw the Space Shuttle Columbia land, followed the Noss treasure hunters into Victorio Peak, escorted dozens of ranch families to visit their old homes, experienced many ear-splitting explosions and missile launches, and has been to Trinity Site probably more than any other human being. Eckles grew up in Nebraska and attended the University of Nebraska. He majored in psychology and English literature, and a master's degree followed at the University of Washington. Eckles, who is on the White Sands Missile Range Historical Foundation board of directors, has published three books: "Pocketful of Rockets," "Trinity: The History of An Atomic Bomb National Landmark," and "Deming New Mexico's Camp Cody: A World War One Training Camp."
Are you interested in New Mexico’s Water Future? Save the dates of December 13th-14th for an important town hall on the 2018 State Water Plan. As many of you know, the state water plan sets the policy agenda for water use in New Mexico. This upcoming town hall deliberation provides the primary opportunity for the public to develop policy priorities for the plan. The town hall will take place in Albuquerque. Registration will open by November 2017.
Friday, October 6, 2017 Happy National 4-H Week Opportunity to Share Your Thoughts on Positive Youth Development and other NIFA Supported Programs USDA’s National Institute of Food and Agriculture Needs Stakeholder Input on Food, Agriculture Priorities The National Institute of Food and Agriculture is accepting input from stakeholders regarding research, extension, and education priorities in food and agriculture. A series of four in-person listening sessions hosted in different regions across the country and submission of written comments will offer two ways to share your thoughts and ideas. Stakeholder input received from both methods will be treated equally. NIFA Listens: Investing in Science to Transform Lives” focuses on answering to two questions from stakeholders: • What is your top priority in food and agricultural research, extension, or education that NIFA should address? • What are the most promising science opportunities for advancement of food and agricultural sciences? NIFA wants to hear from you about priorities and opportunities in agricultural sciences. This will help NIFA prioritize science emphasis areas, identify gaps in programming, and determine which programs are redundant or underperforming. To contribute your ideas online and to register for in-person listening sessions, fill out our input form. You have the option to give a five minute oral presentation and submit written content; however, it is not required to do both. • Individuals wishing to attend in-person listening sessions must complete the RSVP in the input form no later than Thursday, October 12, 2017. If you are making a five minute oral presentation, you must submit a short 250 word abstract describing your topic. • Submissions of written comments will be accepted through Friday, December 1, 2017. The input form is one opportunity to share written comments. Please take time to consider and clearly form your answers to the questions above before filling out the form. You will be allowed 600 words for each question. You may also submit written comments via NIFAlistens@nifa.usda.gov. Four regional in-person listening sessions will be held: • Thursday, Oct. 19, Kansas City, Missouri • Thursday, Oct. 26, Atlanta, Georgia • Thursday, Nov. 2, Sacramento, California • Wednesday, Nov. 8, Hyattsville, Maryland Each session is scheduled to begin at 8:30 a.m. and end no later than 5 p.m. The sessions will be webcast live, transcribed, and made available for playback. All submissions, regardless of the mode, are processed in the same manner. Additional details, including livestream information, will be added as they become available. To stay informed on “NIFA Listens: Investing in Science to Transform Lives,” sign up for the NIFA Update, a weekly compendium of news and information that may be of interest to land-grant and non-land-grant universities, NIFA stakeholders, and other subscribers.
LAS CRUCES - The dramatic history and transformation of White Sands Missile Range is the subject of this month’s Culture Series at the New Mexico Farm & Ranch Heritage Museum. “The Range: From Livestock to Missiles,” is set for 7 p.m. on Oct. 12 in the museum’s theater. The focus is ranching in the Tularosa Basin and in the San Andres and Oscura mountain ranges and how the ranchers lost their land to America's military needs. The speaker is Jim Eckles, who spent 30 years working in the public affairs office at the missile range. Admission to the presentation is free. During his time on the range, Eckles saw the Space Shuttle Columbia land, followed the Noss treasure hunters into Victorio Peak, escorted dozens of ranch families to visit their old homes, experienced many ear-splitting explosions and missile launches, and has been to Trinity Site probably more than any other human being. Eckles grew up in Nebraska and attended the University of Nebraska. He majored in psychology and English literature, and a master's degree followed at the University of Washington. Eckles, who is on the White Sands Missile Range Historical Foundation board of directors, has published three books: "Pocketful of Rockets," "Trinity: The History of An Atomic Bomb National Landmark," and "Deming New Mexico's Camp Cody: A World War One Training Camp."
Tuesday, October 3, 2017
We have to change the dates for the “Wetlands Across Borders Workshop – Playas of the Southern High Plains.” Instead of starting on October 31 and running through November 3, 2017, the new dates are Tuesday, December 12 through Friday December 15. It is still at the Clovis Community College, in Clovis, New Mexico but starting Tuesday December 12 through Friday December 15, 2017. The meeting will consist of one and one half days of presentations and panel discussions about playa ecology, conservation, restoration and other important topics about playas. The meeting will be followed by three track options – New Mexico Rapid Assessment Method Training for Playa Wetlands, a Playas and Roads workshop, or a half-day field trip to look at local playas. We will be sending out more information, a draft agenda, and an invitation to sign up for the meeting and the track options soon. If you would like to be a presenter or bring a poster to the event, please let me know as the agenda will fill up fast. There is no cost to attend but for planning purposes and limited seating for the track options, you will have to register on-line through Evite as soon as we have it available. Note that Wetlands Across Borders Meetings are for participants from neighboring states as well as New Mexico. We will be reaching out to Texas, Oklahoma, Colorado as well. If you know of anyone interested in playas, please pass on this information. Let me know if you have questions. Also, I want to thank those that attended the New Mexico Rapid Assessment Method Training for Playa Wetlands, conducted last week in Clovis New Mexico on September 27 through September 29, 2017. We appreciated your participation and helpful comments during the training. We got to experience playa wetlands first hand since two out of the three playas that we visited were inundated and it rained on day one and day two. Ducks were there enjoying the ponds and wetland vegetation. If you missed this opportunity, we will be providing the training again during the Wetlands Across Borders Workshop in December. Be there or be square! Thank you, Maryann
Tuesday, September 26, 2017
In Las Cruces at NMSU Jesus D. Gomez-Velez Assistant Professor of Hydrology Dept. of Earth & Environmental Science New Mexico Tech Phone: 575-835-5045 firstname.lastname@example.org https://gomezvelezlab.com The talk will be at September 27, 3:30am-4:30pm in Gerald Thomas Hall Room-336. The title of the talk will be “Leaky Pipes Everywhere! Understanding Connectivity Along River Corridors”
https://sandiegofreepress.org/2017/09/why-does-the-colorado-river-need-to-sue-for-rights/ San Diego Free Press By Will Falk On Tuesday, September 26, the Colorado River will sue the State of Colorado in a first-in-the-nation lawsuit requesting that the United States District Court in Denver recognize the river’s rights of nature. These rights include the rights to exist, flourish, regenerate, and naturally evolve. To enforce these rights, the Colorado River will also request that the court grant the river “personhood” and standing to sue in American courts…Because our legal system currently defines nature as property, “resourcism” is institutionalized in American law. While climate change worsens, water continues to be polluted, and the collapse of every major ecosystem on the continent intensifies, we must conclude that our system of law fails to protect the natural world and fails to protect the human and nonhuman communities who depend on it. Jensen, while diagnosing widespread ecocide, observes a fundamental psychological principle: “We act according to the way we experience the world. We experience the world according to how we perceive it. We perceive it the way we have been taught.” Jensen quotes a Canadian lumberman who once said, “When I look at trees I see dollar bills.” The lumberman’s words represent the dominant culture’s view of the natural world. Jensen explains the psychology of this objectification, “If, when you look at trees you see dollar bills, you will act a certain way. If, when you look at trees, you see trees you will act a different way. If, when you look at this tree right here you see this tree right here, you will act differently still.” Law shapes our experience of the world. Currently, law teaches that nature is property, an object, or a resource to use. This entrenches a worldview that encourages environmental destruction. In other words, when law teaches us to see the Colorado River as dollar bills, as simple gallons of water, as an abstract percentage to be allocated, it is no wonder that corporations like Nestle can gain the right to run plastic bottling operations that drain anywhere from 250 million to 510 million gallons of Colorado River water per year. The American legal system can take a good step toward protecting us all – human and nonhuman alike – by granting ecosystems like the Colorado River rights and allowing communities to sue on these ecosystems’ behalf. When standing is recognized on behalf of ecosystems themselves, environmental law will reflect a conception of legal “causation” that is more friendly to the natural world than it is to the corporations destroying the natural world. At a time when the effects of technology are outpacing science’s capacity to research these effects, injured individuals and communities often have difficulty proving that corporate actions are the cause of their injuries. When ecosystems, like the Colorado River, are granted the rights to exist, flourish, regenerate, and naturally evolve, the obsolete causation theory, en vogue, will be corrected. ************ American history is haunted by notorious failures to afford rights to those who always deserved them. Americans will forever shudder, for example, at Chief Justice Roger Taney’s words, when the Supreme Court, in 1857, ruled persons of African descent cannot be, nor were never intended to be, citizens under the Constitution in Dred Scott v. Sanford. Justice Taney wrote of African Americans, “They had for more than a century before been regarded as being of an inferior order, and altogether unfit to associate with the white race … and so far inferior, that they had no rights which the white man was bound to respect…” And, of course, without rights that white, slave-owning men were bound to respect, the horrors of slavery continued. The most hopeful moments in American history, on the other hand, have occurred when the oppressed have demanded and were granted their rights in American courts. Despite centuries of treating African Americans as less than human while defining them as property, our system of law now gives the same rights to African Americans that American citizens have always enjoyed. Once property, African Americans are now persons under the law. Similarly, despite a centuries-old tradition where women were, in the legal sense, owned by men, our system of law now gives the same rights to women that American citizens have always enjoyed. Once property, women are now a person under the law. It’s tempting to describe this history as “inevitable progress” or as “the legal system correcting itself” or with some other congratulatory language. But, this glosses over the violent struggles it took for rights to be won. The truth is, and we see this clearly in Justice Taney’s words, the American legal system resisted justice until change was forced upon it. It took four centuries of genocide and the nation’s bloodiest civil war before our system of law recognized the rights of African Americans. While the courts resisted, African Americans were enslaved, exploited, and killed. Right now, the natural world is struggling violently for its survival. We watch hurricanes, exacerbated by human-induced climate change, rock coastal communities. We choke through wildfires, also exacerbated by human-induced climate change, sweeping across the West. We feel the Colorado River’s thirst as overdraw and drought dries it up. It is the time that American law stop resisting. Our system of law must change to reflect ecological reality. ************ Colorado River between Marble Canyon (Source: Alex Proimos/Flickr/CC-BY-NC-2.0) This is ecological reality: all life depends on clean water, breathable air, healthy soil, a habitable climate, and complex relationships formed by living creatures in natural communities. Water is life and in the arid American Southwest, no natural community is more responsible for the facilitation of life than the Colorado River. Because so much life depends on her, the needs of the Colorado River are primary. Social morality must emerge from a humble understanding of this reality. Law is integral to any society’s morality, so law must emerge from this understanding, too. Human language lacks the complexity to adequately describe the Colorado River and any attempt to account for the sheer amount of life she supports will necessarily be arbitrary. Nevertheless, many creatures of feather, fin, and fur rely on the Colorado River. Iconic, and endangered or threatened, birds like the bald eagle, greater sage grouse, Gunnison sage grouse, peregrine falcon, yellow-billed cuckoo, summer tanager, and southwestern willow flycatcher make their homes in the Colorado River watershed. Fourteen endemic fish species swim the river’s currents including four fish that are now endangered: the humpback chub, Colorado pikeminnow, razorback sucker, and bonytail. Many of the West’s most recognizable mammals depend on the Colorado River for water and to sustain adequate food sources. Gray wolves, grizzly bear, black bear, mountain lions, coyotes, and lynx walk the river’s banks. Elk, mule deer, and bighorn sheep live in her forests. Beavers, river otters, and muskrats live directly in the river’s flow as well as in streams and creeks throughout the Colorado River basin. The Colorado River provides water for close to 40 million people and irrigates nearly 4 million acres of American and Mexican cropland. Agriculture uses the vast majority of the river’s water. In 2012, 78% of the Colorado’s water was used for agriculture alone. 45% of the water is diverted from the Colorado River basin which spells disaster for basin ecosystems. Major cities that rely on these trans-basin diversions include Denver, Los Angeles, San Diego, and Salt Lake City. Despite the Colorado River’s importance to life, she is being destroyed. Before the construction of dams and large-scale diversion, the Colorado flowed 1,450 miles into the Pacific Ocean near Sonora, Mexico. The river’s life story is an epic saga of strength, determination, and the will to deliver her waters to the communities who need them. Across those 1,450 miles, she softened mountainsides, carved through red rock, and braved the deserts who sought to exhaust her. Now, however, the Colorado River suffers under a set of laws, court decrees, and multi-state compacts that are collectively known as the “Law of the River.” The Law of the River allows humans to take more water from the river than actually exists. Granting the river the rights we seek for her would help the courts revise problematic laws. The regulations set forth in the 1922 Colorado River Compact are the most important and, perhaps, the most problematic. Seven states (Arizona, California, Colorado, New Mexico, Nevada, Utah, and Wyoming) are allotted water under the Compact. When the Compact was enacted, the parties assumed that the river’s flow would remain at a reliable 17 million acre-feet of water per year and divided the water using a 15-million acre feet per year standard. But, hydrologists now know 17 million acre-feet represented an unusually high flow and was a mistake. Records show that the Colorado River’s flow was only 9 million acre-feet in 1902, for example. From 2000-2016, the river’s flow only averaged 12.4 million acre-feet per year. So, for the last 16 years, the Compact states have been legally allowed to use water that isn’t there.
Thursday, September 21, 2017
Aamodt Settlement Act Signed into Law by Interior Secretary Zinke by lajicarita By KAY MATTHEWS On September 15 Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke took a few minutes out of his attack on our national monuments to announce in the Federal Register that all conditions of the Aamodt Litigation Settlement Act have been met and it is officially a done deal. This adjudication determines both ground and surface water rights of the four Pojoaque Basin pueblos, Nambe, Tesuque, San Ildefonso, and Pojoaque, and all non-pueblo residents. As I’ve laid out in previous La Jicarita articles, these conditions stipulate that 1) the necessary water supply that must be delivered to the Pueblos via the Pojoaque Basin Regional Water System—2,381 afy—has been permitted by the State Engineer; and 2) “The State has enacted necessary legislation and has provided funding as required under the Settlement Agreement.” As I’ve also laid out in previous La Jicarita articles, Taos County has filed an appeal of its protest of the Top of the World water transfer that supplies part of that water to the Pueblos. And the County of Santa Fe passed a resolution in 2015 stating that it will not appropriate its share of the $261 necessary to fund the Regional Water System “until the legal status of County Roads running through the Settling Pueblos has been resolved.” San Ildefonso Pueblo is claiming that county roads that cross through its “external boundaries” belong to the pueblo and is seeking easement payments. The county claims that it has rights of way on all the roads in question. There has been no resolution of this controversy that has pitted the Pueblos against the non-Pueblo residents of the affected county lands. Dave Neal, an officer of the Northern New Mexicans Protecting Land, Water, and Rights (NNMProtects), a group of Valley residents who have fought both the Aamodt Settlement and to resolve the road easement issue, told La Jicarita that Zinke has extended the deadline for this road resolution from September 15 to November 15, but that the county remains determined that no funds will be released until county residents are assured easements. Even with this extension, could this mean that the Settlement may actually come up short on its requisite water supply and funding and fail to be implemented (the State also failed to pass a required $9 appropriation in last year’s legislative session)? Another possible roadblock would be the failure to complete the Regional Water System by 2024, the deadline stipulated for completion in the Settlement Act. None of this seems to bother the powers that be behind this 51 year old adjudication who have pushed this controversial project through the legal process with little regard for fairness, cost, burdensome bureaucracy, the abrogation of the transfer protest process, the cumulative impacts of moving paper water from basin to basin, dipping one more straw into the Rio Grande, and most importantly, the changing nature of our environment and climate that could easily render water supply inadequate or even nonexistent. The legal process does allow for a challenge to the Final Decree, which is being mounted by many of the 300 plus non-Pueblo Pojoaque Valley residents who objected to the terms of the settlement but whose objections were dismissed by the court overseeing the adjudication. They have now filed a notice of appeal to the Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals, represented by Blair Dunn of the Western Agriculture, Resource and Business Advocates law firm. This will be an uphill battle considering the forces deployed against it. Just one last note about Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke. While questions should always be raised about how local communities are consulted when public lands are assigned certain restrictions, such as national monument designation, that’s not really what Zinke’s agenda is about. His aim is to aid and abet the movement within the Republican Party to privatize as many public lands as possible in order to turn them over to the extractive industry. As Outside Magazine reported on Zinke’s secret memo to Trump on his review of the monuments, which was leaked to the press, the GOP’s official platform states: “Congress shall immediately pass universal legislation providing for a timely and orderly mechanism requiring the federal government to convey certain federally controlled public lands to states.” The American Lands Council, based in Utah, is spearheading the movement, which makes the Bears Ears and the Grand Staircase-Escalante national monuments the most vulnerable. lajicarita | September 21, 2017 at 11:02 am | Tags: Aamodt Adjudication Settlement, American Lands Council, Bears Ears National Monument, Department of the Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke, Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument, NNMProtects | Categories: Acequias, Climate Change, Groundwater, New Mexico Office of the State Engineer, Private Property, Public Lands, Water Adjudication, water and acequias | URL: http://wp.me/p2bCkq-1JR
Monday, September 18, 2017
Texas vs. New Mexico water lawsuit now pending in the U.S. Supreme Court could take as long as another decade to be resolved
LAS CRUCES - The Texas vs. New Mexico water lawsuit now pending in the U.S. Supreme Court could take as long as another decade to be resolved, a consultant water attorney for the city said during a recent meeting. "It's going to be much longer than four years," Jim Brockmann said in response to a question posed by Las Cruces City Councilor Ceil Levatino. "It's very complex litigation. The state of New Mexico hasn't even filed counterclaims or cross claims. "If I was really going to take my best guess, I'd say closer to 10 years than to four." What's next? The litigation has pitted the state of Texas against New Mexico in a U.S. Supreme Court battle over groundwater use in southern New Mexico. The case has consumed the attention of major water users in the region, including cities, farmers and irrigation districts, many of whom could see ramifications from the eventual outcome. In particular, many are worried about a curtailment of water use that could result. In February, the Supreme Court agent who is overseeing the lawsuit declined a request by the state of New Mexico to throw out the case. Las Cruces city councilors also heard Monday from Assistant New Mexico Attorney General Tania Maestas, who gave an update on the litigation. She said there could be oral arguments related to the motion to dismiss, but if not, the case will proceed with New Mexico filing its formal response to the lawsuit and possibly making its own allegations, known as counter-claims. "This is when we actually get to state points that we feel are especially important to the citizens here and the water users here in New Mexico," she said. City-AG's office partnership The city, as a major groundwater user in Doña Ana County, is "very clearly aligned" with the New Mexico Attorney General's Office in the lawsuit, Brockmann said. The lawsuit boils down to control over groundwater in south-central New Mexico, he said. The city believes the state of New Mexico is the controlling authority. "So it's absolutely critical for us that we communicate and coordinate with the state Attorney General's Office to make sure that those groundwater rights that are administered under state law are protected under state law," he said. "And that is a primary position for the attorney general in that litigation." The Las Cruces-based Elephant Butte Irrigation District, which delivers river water to farmers throughout Doña Ana County, has opposed the state of New Mexico's position in lawsuit. Maestas said current Attorney General Hector Balderas has talked with EBID about their stance in the case, which hadn't been done previously. Also, EBID has started having technical-oriented discussions with a group of groundwater users known as the Lower Rio Grande Water Users Organization. That group has been carrying out work on the technical information that would be key to any settlement of the lawsuit. Brockmann said the water users group, which includes the city of Las Cruces, had been working not only because of the Supreme Court litigation but also because of an ongoing water adjudication case in state district court. That long-term proceeding will legally define water rights for water users throughout Doña Ana County. Origins The lawsuit arose out of 1938 Rio Grande Compact, which apportioned river water among three U.S. states, experts have said. New Mexico’s measuring point for delivering water to Texas was the Elephant Butte Reservoir — roughly 100 miles north of the actual Texas state line. The river water released from the reservoir serves farmers in the New Mexico-based Elephant Butte Irrigation District and the Texas-based El Paso County Water Improvement District No. 1, as well as in Mexico. Groundwater pumping in that same 100-mile stretch, however, has been the purview of the New Mexico State Engineer’s Office. The groundwater and river water systems are connected. Texas has argued that New Mexico has allowed over-pumping of groundwater, undermining El Paso irrigators’ share of river water. A 2010 agreement between EBID and the El Paso irrigation district attempted to resolve a longstanding dispute over apportioning water. Former New Mexico Attorney General Gary King challenged the agreement in federal district court, which onlookers said prompted Texas to file its lawsuit against New Mexico at the U.S. Supreme Court. EBID has continued to back the operating agreement of 2008. Diana Alba Soular may be reached at 575-541-5443, email@example.com or @AlbaSoular on Twitter.