CORRALES, N.M. (KRQE) – The Middle Rio Grande Conservancy District (MRGCD) says it has a temporary fix in place after a siphon broke in 2022. On Monday, Mar. 13, the MRGCD successfully tested its electric pumping solution for the Corrales Siphon.

The district covered a hole in the pipeline in May 2022 and shut it down during the irrigation season. This pause, along with low rainfall and low river levels, caused problems for farmers in the area. The district installed diesel pumps after the pipe initially broke, but found that they were “inefficient and required a lot more inspection and maintenance,” according to Chief Engineer Jason Casuga.

This year, the MRGCD worked with PNM to bring power to the site of the Corrales Siphon. This allows the district to use electric pumps. “They will be quieter than the diesel pumps, provide more reliable service, and eliminate having diesel a stone’s throw away from the bosque,” says Casuga. The electric pump pulls water from the Rio Grande river and delivers it to a canal.

Although the fix is a temporary solution, Casuga says this will ensure water delivery to the irrigating community of Corrales. According to the district, the electric pump will be in place for the 2023 and 2024 irrigation seasons. The district hopes to have a permanent siphon in place by the 2025 irrigation season.