APRIL 10-11, 2019





The Binational Summit on Transboundary Groundwater at the US-Mexico Border is being organized by the International Boundary and Water Commission, United States and Mexico (IBWC), which will take place April 10-11, 2019 in El Paso, Texas at the Kay Bailey Hutchison Desalination Plant, TecH2O Conference Center.

The purpose of the Summit is to bring together US and Mexican federal, state, and local agencies, as well as non-governmental organizations and the academic community to share information and promote U.S. and Mexico cooperation on groundwater resource related issues. The regional, transboundary groundwater systems support many local communities, and the collection and sharing of information are of great importance to the management of groundwater and to its sustainable use. This forum hopes to promote the state of knowledge about this system and learn from other geographic regions that face similar needs.

The Summit builds on the recent efforts of the IBWC and the recommendations developed at the 2012 Summit that focused on Border Water Resources: Past, Present, and Future.

Speakers from the U.S. and Mexican border region will be sharing their perspectives and research on this important topic. Confirmed speakers include representatives from the U.S. Geological Survey, National Water Commission- Mexico, University of California-Davis, University of Arizona Water Resources Research Center, Institute of Water Technology- Mexico, New Mexico Water Resources Research Institute, University of Sonora, Texas Alliance of Groundwater Districts, and Texas A&M AgriLife Research Center.

Registration for the event:
$125 - on site registration, day of event
$100 - online registration
$50 - students


For Summit information:
Gilbert Anaya, USIBWC, (915) 832-4702, gilbert.anaya@ibwc.gov

Photo Credit and Permission by Visit El Paso


Click presenter name for presentation slides.

Wednesday, April 10, 2019

8:00 am to 9:00 am


IBWC United States Commissioner Jayne Harkins

IBWC Mexican Commissioner Roberto Salmón

9:15 am to 9:45 am

Keynote Speaker

The Transboundary Aquifer Assessment Program as a Model for Multi-level Collaboration

Sharon B. Megdal, University of Arizona Water Resources Research Center

9:45 am to 10:00 am


10:00 am to 11:00 am

Panel 1: Groundwater Resources: Status and Challenges

Moderator: Oscar Ibáñez, Central Board of Water and Sanitation, Chihuahua

John Tracy, Texas Water Resources Institute

Alfonso Rivera, Geological Survey of Canada

Manuel Martínez, National Institute of Water Technology

Sam Fernald, New Mexico Water Resources Research Institute

Heber Saucedo, National Water Commission

11:00 am to 12:15 pm

Session 1: Hydrogeologic Assessment

Moderator: Anne-Marie Matherne, U.S. Geological Survey

Geochemical and isotopic determination of deep groundwater contributions

and salinity to the shallow groundwater and surface water systems, Mesilla

Basin, New Mexico, Texas and Mexico

Andrew Robertson, U.S. Geological Survey

Hydrogeological Evaluation of Rio Santa Cruz and Rio San Pedro

Transboundary Aquifers

Ismael Minjarez Sosa, University of Sonora

General aspects of the aquifers located within the Rio Grande Basin

José Alberto Pérez Ortíz, Rio Bravo Basin, National Water Commission

Hydrogeologic- Framework Controls on Transboundary Groundwater Flow

in the Mesilla Basin- Paso del Norte Region

John Hawley, New Mexico Water Resources Research Institute

12:15 pm to 1:15 pm


1:15 pm to 1:45 pm

Tour of the Kay Bailey Hutchison Desalination Plant/Poster Session

1:45 pm to 2:15 pm

Keynote Speaker

Regulating What You Can’t See- International Law and Transboundary Aquifers

Gabriel Eckstein, Texas A&M University School of Law

2:15 pm to 2:45 pm

Keynote Speaker

The importance of binational management of groundwater: Heading towards integrated management in Mexico and the United States

Raúl Morales Escalante, Mexican Geohydrological Association

2:45 pm to 3:00 pm


3:00 pm to 4:15 pm

Session 1: Hydrogeologic Assessment, Continued

On-going Research to Estimate Groundwater Recharge in Agricultural Areas in the Mesilla Valley

Salim Bawazir, New Mexico State University

Assessment of the Geology and Water Resources in the San Diego - Tijuana area, USA and Mexico

Wes Danskin and Napoleon Gudino-Elizondo, U.S. Geological Survey

The Mexicali Valley aquifer and its relationship to the Imperial and Yuma aquifers

Jorge Ramírez Hernández, Autonomous University of Baja California

Activities conducted for the study of water supply in Cd. Juarez

Manuel Herrera, Municipal Board of Water and Sanitation, Ciudad Juárez

4:15 pm to 5:30 pm

Panel 2: Cooperative Strategies for Groundwater

Moderator: Gonzalo Hatch Kuri, University of Mexico

Sarah Rountree Schlessinger, Texas Water Foundation

Alvar Escriva-Bou, Public Policy Institute of California

Raúl Morales Escalante, Mexican Geohydrological Association

Einav Henenson, Arizona Department of Water Resources

Alfredo Granados Olivas, Autonomous University of Ciudad Juárez

Thursday, April 11, 2019

9:00 am to 9:30 am

Keynote Speaker

Efficient use of groundwater in Mexico

Heber Saucedo, National Water Commission

9:30 am to 10:30 am

Panel 3: Data Sharing and Understanding Groundwater: What is working? What is missing?

Moderator: Alfonso Rivera, Geological Survey of Canada

James Callegary, U.S. Geological Survey

Ronald Green, Southwest Research Institute

Luis Antonio Rascón, Comisión Internacional de Límites y Aguas

Thora Padilla, Mescalero Apache Tribe

John Balliew, El Paso Water

Lucas Oroz, Northwest Basin, National Water Commission

10:30 am to 10:45 am


10:45 am to 12:30 pm

Session 2: Watershed Restoration, Improvements, and Sustainability

Moderator: Rubén Chávez Guillén, Mexican Geohydrological Association

Watershed Improvements through Stormwater Management

Gary Esslinger, Elephant Butte Irrigation District

Effective Transboundary Aquifer Areas: a potential approach for transboundary groundwater management

Rosario Sanchez Flores, Texas Water Resources Institute

Thomas Mendez, Mescalero Apache Tribe

The importance of groundwater for restoration in the Colorado River

Yamilett Carrillo, Restauremos el Colorado

Restoration crisis and opportunities in the Rio Tijuana Basin

Carlos de la Parra Rentería, Colegio de la Frontera Norte COLEF

Balancing Human and Environmental Water Needs in the Rio Grande-Rio Bravo

Samuel Sandoval Solis, University of California, Davis

12:30 pm to 1:30 pm


Kay Bailey Hutchison Desalination Plant Tours

1:30 pm to 2:00 pm

Keynote Speaker

Groundwater Availability: New Tools, Techniques, and Data Sharing Opportunities

Bill Cunningham, U.S. Geological Survey

2:00 pm to 3:15 pm

Session 3: Hydrogeologic Modeling

Moderator: James Callegary, U.S. Geological Survey

Hydrogeologic Modeling in Mexico: a historical perspective Pedro Soto, National Water Commission

Hydrogeologic modeling of environmental flows under Minute 319

Eliana Rodriguez, Autonomous University of Baja California

Modeling Hydrologic-Social Systems in Transboundary Regions

Ashley Page, New Mexico Water Resources Research Institute

Hydrological Models for the Hueco Bolson: Water Storage Myth

Zhuping Sheng, Texas A&M AgriLife

Impacts of Variable Climate and Effluent Flows on the Transboundary Santa cruz Aquifer

Elia Tapia, University of Arizona Water Resources Research Center

3:15 pm to 3:30 pm


3:30 pm to 5:00 pm

Session 4: Stakeholder Engagement

Moderator: Carlos de la Parra, Colegio de la Frontera Norte COLEF

Engaging Stakeholders on Impacts of Climate Change on Water Resources

Nicole Herman-Mercer, U.S. Geological Survey

Hydrogeological evaluation of aquifers. The practical case of the Tijuana Aquifer

Raúl Morales Escalante, Mexican Geohydrological Association

TAAP Stakeholder Engagement in the Arizona- Sonora Border Region

Jacob Petersen-Perlman, University of Arizona Water Resources Research Center

Scientific reserach on transboundary water in Mexico and the United States by UNAM; a brief overview

Gonzalo Hatch Kuri, Autonomous National University of Mexico

Negotiating Difference and Considering Power: An Anthropological Perspective on Engaging Agricultural Stakeholders

Holly Brause, University of New Mexico

The State of the Mexicali Valley aquifer

Rogelio Granados, Baja California Peninsula Basin, National Water Commission

5:00 pm to 5:30 pm

Summary of Conference and Recommendations


Closing Remarks

IBWC United States Commissioner Jayne Harkins

IBWC Mexican Commissioner Roberto Salmón



The conference planning committee is pleased to announce its “Call for Poster Abstracts” on topics related to the theme of the Binational Summit on Transboundary Groundwater at the US-Mexico Border 2019 conference:

Topics within the current conference agenda include:

• Groundwater resources: status and challenges
• Hydrogeologic assessment
• Cooperative strategies for groundwater
• Data sharing and understanding groundwater
• Watershed restoration, improvements, and sustainability
• Hydrogeologic modeling
• Stakeholder engagement
• Groundwater local perspective

Important Dates:

*NEW DATE* March 27, 2019      Poster abstracts due at 5:00 pm MST
*NEW DATE* March 29, 2019      Notified of acceptance
*NEW DATE* April 10, 2019        Posters should be brought on backing for set up between 7:00 - 8:30 am. Easels will be provided
*NEW DATE* April 10, 2019        Poster session 12:15 - 1:45 pm; presenters must stand next to their poster
*NEW DATE* April 11, 2019        Posters should remain up until 5:30 pm when the Summit concludes


All submissions must comply with the following guidelines. Failure to follow these requirements may result in rejection of the abstract during the review process.

1. All abstracts must be submitted via an email with the abstract attached. Submission must be sent to Gilbert Anaya at gilbert.anaya@ibwc.gov by the deadline of March 27, 2019, 5:00 pm MST. The Subject Line must read: Binational Summit on Transboundary Groundwater abstract [enter submitter’s first initial and last name]. For example: Binational Summit on Transboundary Groundwater abstract JDoe

2. Once an abstract has been received, Gilbert Anaya will confirm receipt of the abstract in an email reply.

3. Abstracts must not exceed 250 words. Abstracts must be prepared using Times New Roman 12 pt font with 1-inch page margins and text should be single-spaced with double line spacing between paragraphs. Do not include graphics or photos.

4. Abstract titles should not exceed 300 characters. After the title of the abstract, include all authors with their affiliation and email address.

5. Word .docx is the preferred submission format, but a PDF is acceptable.


Room block: "International Boundary & Water Commission" or "IBWC"

Block code: "03076703in"

Guests need to call the hotel directly at (915) 778-4241 and speak to the front desk to make their reservation by March 26, 2019