Pumping aims to boost Pecos River amid drought losses

New Mexico News

CARLSBAD, N.M. (AP) – Managers are pumping water from state reservoirs into the Pecos River in southeastern New Mexico to account for drought losses. The move is meant to augment supplies for users and water rights holders along the river while maintaining deliveries to Texas required by a 2003 settlement.

About one-third of New Mexico is dealing with exceptional drought — the highest designation under which fire danger increases, no surface water is available for agriculture and large rivers run dry. Most of Eddy, Lea and Chaves counties are in that category, while drought in the rest of the state is classified as either severe or extreme.

Managers are pumping water from state reservoirs into the Pecos River in southeastern New Mexico to account for drought losses. The move is meant to augment supplies for users and water rights holders along the river while maintaining deliveries to Texas required by a 2003 settlement.

About one-third of New Mexico is dealing with exceptional drought — the highest designation under which fire danger increases, no surface water is available for agriculture and large rivers run dry. Most of Eddy, Lea and Chaves counties are in that category, while drought in the rest of the state is classified as either severe or extreme.

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