Issue: Water


The importance of water cannot be understated, and people’s commitment to smart water policy was readily apparent at the last two water town halls held by New Mexico First (2014 and 2017). New Mexicans want a balanced water policy that plans for future shortages, expands water storage and reuse, addresses legal issues and protects environmental resources. They want to explore new water sources, including potential of cleaning up brackish water in our aquifers. They also want to improve the ways the state finances water projects. Specific priorities include:

  • Improving state and regional water plans
  • Making our water supply resilient and flexible
  • Planning for extreme droughts
  • Restoring watersheds
  • Protecting against wildfire and water source loss
  • Reducing endangered species conflicts
  • Advancing shortage-sharing agreements
  • Improving water rights management
  • Improving adjudication process
  • Capturing precipitation
  • Assessing brackish water sources
  • Clarifying brackish/produced water processes
  • Investing water dollars wisely
  • Expanding water funding sources
  • Conserving water and protect against contamination.

Details on each of these policy goals appear in the recommendations reports posted in the research section. Additionally, water policy work is also underway under the Resilience in New Mexico Agriculture project, conducted in partnership with New Mexico State University-Cooperative Extensive Service.


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