Water is a precious resource. How we utilize water will shape the future of our country and our state. Demands due to population growth, industry growth in our cities, energy processing, the environment and recreation are ever increasing. Our water supply is nearly fully allocated in many parts of the western United States.
There are some serious choices that have to be made. Most of New Mexico is in a drought and we need to determine how we can overcome the scarcity of water in our region. First, we have to protect and preserve the water resources we have now. We must invest capital and allocate resources to maintain and repair aging infrastructure. Second, it is essential for federal and state government agencies to work together with counties, local municipalities and tribal governments to ensure our people have access to the water supplies they need. Third, we must look at alternative sources for our water. Piping or hauling our surface water from one side of the state to the other is a short term fix. New Mexico, and the southwest as a whole, needs to consider measures such as piping water from other regions, converting saline water into palatable water use, and prioritizing water usage based on needs of the area.