eNews February 2017

NMSU Grad Student Studying Economic Impact of Water Conservation, Storage Capacity Development, and Crop Diversity in the Tucumcari Project of East-Central New Mexico (continued)

A dynamic optimization framework will be used to formulate the model study. Three water policy measures to be considered include: lining canals, removing stored sediment, and expanding irrigation storage capacity. Three water supply scenarios will also be considered, namely normal, dry, and drought. The model will examine the economic consequences to farm income resulting from each of these nine combinations of water supply and policy. The governing equations of the model will accept inputs regarding water availability factors and the economies of crop production and pricing as well as the choice of recreational versus irrigation use of water.

Befekadu Habteyes received a 2017 NM WRRI Student Water Research Grant for this project. The research results will be posted on the institute’s website and made available to the AHCD. They may implement the techniques and policy recommendations from this research to support the growers in the district and county as a whole. Moreover, the ongoing research for better domestic water supply in the Northeast counties of New Mexico could use this approach to find more efficient and cost effective ways of using scarce water resources. The Agricultural Science Center at Tucamcari might also use this research as a guide to identify the economic feasibility and release schedules for new forage crops for the ranchers in the district.