Protecting our Prime Watersheds
The Pecos Wilderness and the surrounding roadless areas are home to a maze of rivers, lakes and streams that contribute to the headwaters of the Pecos River, the Mora River and the Gallinas River.
Activities such as mining, drilling, fracking, road construction and timber harvests have the potential to degrade water quality, affecting major watersheds like the Upper Pecos, the Rio Grande and the Gallinas.
In addition to the diverse forest ecosystems that thrive in these watersheds, development could affect the water supply for the surrounding counties of Taos, Mora, Rio Arriba, San Miguel and Santa Fe.
Many acequias in New Mexico receive a significant share of their agricultural acequia water from the Pecos River and its tributaries. Protecting the watersheds will help ensure a key source of irrigation.
We are thrilled, gratified and relieved to see the US Fish and Wildlife Service doing the right thing for Mexican wolves and overriding the New Mexico Game Commission's attempts to subvert wolf recovery efforts!
Please send a thank you to our US senators, Tom Udall and Martin Heinrich, Secretary of Interior Sally Jewell and US Fish and Wildlife Director Dan Ashe for their courage and vision making this critical decision.
In September, Congressman Steve Pearce introduced H.R. 3478, the Luna and Hidalgo Counties
- The Gila River is an ecological treasure that deserves long-term protection.
- The diversion project is technically infeasible and will yield little to no water in many years.
- The Gila diversion is expected to be hugely expensive, with construction costs estimated by the Bureau of Reclamation at $800M to $1 billion and a continuing cost for operation, maintenance, and CAP exchange water in excess of $10 million each year, in perpetuity.
- The diversion is unaffordable for New Mexicans. The federal funds available will pay for only a small fraction of the construction cost of the NM Unit, leaving a gap of up to $900+ million for taxpayers and water users to cover.
- The project is unnecessary because the area's long-term water needs can be met by other proven means -- through conservation, groundwater management, water recycling and watershed restoration.