As water scarcity is a critical issue for New Mexico, Texas and Mexico, the annual ‘Two Nations One Water’ U.S.-Mexico Border Water Summit 2019 is set address this challenge and more.
The summit is scheduled for April 23 through the 25th at the New Mexico Farm and Ranch Heritage Museum in Las Cruces, New Mexico.
The New Mexico Water Resources Research Institute at New Mexico State University will host the conference, which is in its second year.
“The Two Nations One Water conference provides a platform for a broad audience to explore adaptive water strategies for managing drought in the border region,” said Pei Xu, NMSU civil engineering associate professor.
“The conference will address the complex interrelationships among water, agriculture, energy, the economy and socio-political realities. It provides an opportunity for managers, policy makers, government and non-governmental agencies, researchers, students, farmers, ranchers, producers and other stakeholders to participate in learning, sharing and networking. Participants from the U.S. and Mexico will present and share their experiences on water issues along the U.S.-Mexico border.”
“We are experiencing drastically reduced surface water supplies, declining groundwater quality and quantity, and cumulative effects of more than a decade of drought conditions,” Xu said. “Climate science indicates our region will have a permanent shift to a more arid climate. Water scarcity has affected communities, industry, local farmers and ranchers because they rely on conventional fresh water supplies. Improving the resiliency of water supply in an increasingly arid climate is a key challenge for water planners and managers.”
The conference begins April 23 with a field trip to the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation’s Brackish Groundwater National Desalination Research Facility in Alamogordo, New Mexico.
The first full-day of the event, April 24, will begin with welcome speech from Ed Archuleta, director of Water Initiatives for the University of Texas at El Paso, and opening remarks from U.S. Rep. Xochitl Torres Small. Along with presentations, panel discussions and a student poster session, Mike Hightower from the University of New Mexico and New Mexico Desalination Association will present the keynote address, One Province/One Water.
The conference concludes April 25 with presentations, panel discussions and breakout group discussions. Jayne Harkins from the International Boundary and Water Commission will give the keynote address, Water Management Along the U.S.-Mexico Border.
“I am very happy to work with colleagues at NM WRRI, NMSU, UTEP and Texas A&M to organize this important conference,” Xu said. “We have also received great support and sponsorship from water utilities, industry and government agencies.”
General admission is $50 per person, $100 per person the day of the event and students are $10, which includes two continental breakfasts and two luncheons. The field trip to the desalination research facility is $25 per person and students are no charge.
For the full agenda or to register for the event visit the summit’s website.
Author: Tiffany Acosta – NMSU