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News Archive - 2014

“Rain in New Mexico: Past, Present, and Future” – A Presentation by Tom Schmugge

June 30, 2015

The New Mexico Academy of Science is pleased to present a talk by renowned expert in satellite remote sensing by Dr. Thomas Schmugge.

Time, Date, and Location: 5:30 PM, Wednesday, October 8th, at the Museum of Nature and Science, Las Cruces, NM.

Please follow link for additional information.

59th Annual WRRI Water Conference

June 29, 2015

Join us this fall at New Mexico’s premier annual water conference. The New Mexico Water Resources Research Institute is proud to have its 59th annual conference in the state’s capitol this fall. Over 300 participants are expected at this year’s event where the state’s water experts and interested citizens will gather to discuss New Mexico’s water future.

During the day-and-a-half program, the NM WRRI will host a poster session along with its partners Sandia National Laboratories and Los Alamos National Laboratory. This 90-minute session is the perfect opportunity to exchange information, showcase water projects, and update colleagues on water research. The session allows students, faculty, agency staff, and private entities to network with colleagues from throughout the state and region, providing opportunities for collaboration.

This year’s conference will focus on a new NM WRRI initiative, made possible through the 2014 New Mexico State Legislature. Projects are underway to develop critical data synthesis to address water scarcity challenges. With our state facing long-term droughts, multi-million-dollar lawsuits, water shortages, and water quality issues, it’s critical to assess the state’s water availability and use on a yearly time frame. The Institute, with many collaborators statewide, is developing a statewide water assessment that will help identify the relative magnitudes of water issues and will help move state water planning forward. An up-to-date assessment for water policy guidance will help New Mexico plan for a sustainable water future as every sector of our economy, including jobs, education, culture, and health relies on available and good quality water.

The statewide water assessment initiative will provide a practical informational tool for state water planning. The assessment will utilize state-of-the-art data streams from remote sensing and new data networks to show up-to-the-minute water conditions (such as evapotranspiration from satellites). The development of the statewide water assessment will include the water use diversity of New Mexico: acequias, pueblos, groundwater extractors, energy providers and municipalities, river corridor users, and rangeland producers among others and will be coordinated with New Mexico’s water management agencies. The assessment will be made available to researchers to support cutting-edge multidisciplinary water research. The water assessment will include all water inputs and outputs to the state to enable hydrology-based water planning for a sustainable future.

NM WRRI is offering a very affordable conference registration fee in order to draw as many New Mexicans as possible to the event. Come learn more about the statewide water assessment program and hear our state’s water experts update us on water issues facing the citizens of New Mexico. We’ll look forward to seeing you at La Fonda in Santa Fe on November 18-19, 2014.

FY15 Student Water Research Grant Program

June 27, 2015

Undergraduate, master’s and doctoral students eligible!

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Proposals Due September 16, 2014

Students enrolled full-time in a degree program at an New Mexico educational institution are eligible for water-related research grants of up to $6,000.

Projects will start October 1, 2014. For more information and proposal guidelines Click Here

Happy 50th Anniversary!

June 26, 2015

Water Resources Research Act

Fifty years ago President Lyndon B. Johnson on July 17, 1964, signed into law the Water Resources Research Act establishing a Water Resources Research Institute in each state. The New Mexico Water Resources Research Institute was one of the first institutes established under the WRRA. New Mexico Senator Clinton P. Anderson was instrumental in designing the Act as he saw the need for academic institutions to lead the way in producing research that would help solve the nation’s water problems.

The 54 institutes nationwide (the WRRA established a water institute in each state, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, the U.S. Virgin Islands, and Guam) partner with the U.S. Geological Survey to “…enlist the intellectual power of universities and research institutes in a nationwide effort to conserve and utilize our water resources for the common benefit.” On the 50th anniversary of the Act, the USGS acknowledged the Water Resources Research Institutes for “path-breaking research, developing innovation information and technology transfer programs, and providing training to more than 25,000 students in their 50-year history.”

The New Mexico Water Resources Research Institute continues its efforts to deal with statewide water scarcity issues that impact every sector of our economy and looks forward to assisting New Mexico in the next 50 years.

The USGS press release, USGS Celebrates 50th Anniversary of Water Resources Research Act: Vital research on water flows from 1964 law is available at:​

FY15 Faculty Water Research Grants Awarded

June 25, 2015

The NM WRRI is pleased to announce that five water research grants will be awarded to New Mexico faculty in response to the Request for Proposals issued in April. Funding for the grants was made available through the New Mexico State Legislature. Awards support targeted research to improve management of the waters of New Mexico.

Each of the projects will receive about $30,000 in funding for one-year projects that start on July 1, 2014. “New Mexico has preeminently qualified faculty researchers who are ready to assist the state of New Mexico in dealing with water management issues and are prepared to lead the water research effort to ensure a sustainable water future for the state. These projects are part of a larger legislatively funded NM WRRI statewide initiative that includes researchers from NMSU, UNM, and NM Tech plus the state and federal agencies. We will release additional project details as they become available. Today we send our congratulations to the recipients of the water research grants.”

Grant awards include:

  • Doing hydrology backwards in New Mexico to estimate a statewide water budget (i.e. Canadian River, RG, Gila, Pecos) , Ricardo González-Pinzón, University of New Mexico, Center for Water and the Environment, Department of Civil Engineering
  • Drought, salinity, and invasive plants: A new model for sustainable water management , Geno A. Picchioni, New Mexico State University, Plant and Environmental Sciences and Brian Schutte, NMSU Department of Entomology, Plant Pathology and Weed Sciences
  • Policy alternatives for controlling nitrate pollution from NM’s dairies , Jingjing Wang, University of New Mexico, Department of Economics
  • Assessment of water table and water quality variations with respect to river flow along Rio Grande between Garfield NM and Fabens TX , Blair Stringam and Manoj Shukla, NMSU Plant and Environmental Sciences
  • Identification of law and policy options for best water management practices , Adrian Oglesby, UNM, Utton Transboundary Resources Center

NM Interstate Stream Commission announces the Lower Rio Grande water planning region public meeting on May 21, 2014, 10:00 a.m. to 12:00 noon at the Doña Ana County Commission Chambers.

June 21, 2015

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(Santa Fe) -The New Mexico Interstate Stream Commission (ISC) has initiated public meetings within the 16 New Mexico water planning regions. The purpose of these meetings is two-fold: to provide information about the two-year regional and state water update process and to initiate the re-establishment of regional steering committees.

For additional information, contact Lela Hunt, Public Information Officer at 505-699-4923 or follow link: Lower Rio Grande water planning region for May 21, 2014.

Fiscal Year 2015 Request for Proposals

June 20, 2015

NM WRRI Faculty Water Research Grant Program

Closing Date: 5:00 p.m., May 21, 2014

RFP available at FY 2015 NM WRRI Faculty Research Program

The New Mexico Water Resources Research Institute (NM WRRI) announces availability of funding for its Faculty Water Research Grant Program. Funds have been made available through the New Mexico State Legislature with the support of the Governor to support targeted research to improve management of the waters of New Mexico. In this solicitation, NM WRRI expects to fund about four $30,000 grants with state funding for FY 2015.

Proposals are sought from researchers in any academic discipline at a New Mexico university. For this funding cycle, proposals are sought in three priority topic areas:

  • integrated statewide water budget
  • water policy for planning
  • water-supply innovation

NM WRRI receives water research funding and will offer faculty and student research grants.

June 19, 2015

The New Mexico Water Resources Research Institute is pleased to announce that it will receive $1 million for a water research initiative to improve water management in New Mexico. The funding for fiscal Year 2015, with potential to recur in the future, was provided by the New Mexico Legislature with the support of the Governor. It will elevate the institute’s ability to address New Mexico’s myriad water problems. On behalf of water researchers throughout the state of New Mexico, the institute is very grateful and expresses sincere thanks for the strong support during the 2014 New Mexico Legislative Session.

As part of the water initiative, the NM WRRI has issued a Request for Proposals to fund research by New Mexico’s university faculty. In keeping with the will of the legislation that provided the funding, research will be sought that addresses three priority topic areas: integrated statewide water budget, water policy for planning, and water-supply innovation. Proposals in response to the RFP are due May 21, 2014 . Announcement of awards will be made in mid-June with projects to start on July 1, 2014.

In mid-August, the NM WRRI will announce the availability of student grants to address the same priority topics. Student grant proposals will be due in mid-September for projects to begin October 1, 2014. Please check the NM WRRI website for updates on these grant opportunities.

59th Annual New Mexico Water Conference

June 19, 2015

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El Agua Es Vida: Acequias in New Mexico, Exhibition Opening, Saturday, May 3, 1:00 – 3:30 PM

June 18, 2015

Please see announcement for visiting the Acequia Exhibition at the Maxwell Museum of Anthropology at the University of New Mexico. The exhibition is free and open to all.

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2014 Lush & Lean free workshops

will be held on Thursday evenings from 6:00 – 8:00 pm. Please see schedule of dates at and for Syllabus

Governor Susana Martinez announces $2M proposal for support of NM WRRI

June 15, 2015

The New Mexico Water Resources Research Institute was pleased to hear the announcement by Governor Susana Martinez of her $2M proposal for support of water research through the NM WRRI. The funding will elevate the statewide institute to meet additional water research needs associated with drought, water scarcity, water planning, and water quality. Included in the $2M initiative is a $350,000 base budget expansion originally approved as the #1 NMSU priority for Research and Public Service Project funding. Additional funding proposed by Governor Martinez includes $800,000 for a statewide water assessment, $100,000 for an NMSU faculty position for regional water budgeting, $450,000 for sustained long-term water research, and $300,000 for a Center for Water Excellence.

This recommendation still needs to be adopted by the New Mexico legislature in the upcoming 2014 session before getting final signature from the governor. Everyone can be a winner on this. Please contact your legislator to support expanded funding for NM WRRI.

Governor Susana Martinez Proposes $2 Million Investment to Boost Water Research and Innovation at New Mexico Water Resources Research Institute

June 14, 2015

Building an Economy that Leads Requires Water Security Throughout New Mexico

Albuquerque – Governor Susana Martinez unveiled a proposal to invest an additional $2 million to boost water research and innovation in New Mexico. Addressing the 58th Annual New Mexico Water Conference via video, Governor Martinez called on the New Mexico Legislature to allocate $2 million dollars in additional funding to the New Mexico Water Resources Research Institute (NM WRRI) during the upcoming legislative session. NM WRRI works to solve New Mexico’s pressing water problems through supporting research projects at New Mexico’s colleges and universities. ( see more )

NM WRRI 57th Annual New Mexico Water Conference

June 12, 2015

Hard Choices: Adapting Policy and Management to Water Scarcity (The full conference proceedings will be available soon.)

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A two-day town hall will bring together people from around the state to develop practical recommendations on water use and policy. Date: April 15-16, 2014. Tenative Times: 8:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Location: Marriott Pyramid North, 5151 San Francisco Rd NE, Albuquerque, NM 87109.

The EPA Releases a Report of Climate Change Impacts on Streamflow and Water Quality in 20 Watersheds in the United States.

June 12, 2015


The report also provides an improved understanding of methodological challenges associated with integrating existing tools (e.g., climate models, downscaling approaches, and watershed models) and data sets to address these scientific questions. To view the study and related links, visit: