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Old 09-17-2012, 08:55 AM
 
Location: New Mexico
442 posts, read 271,110 times
Reputation: 650
Default Where did all the water go???

Thought it is odd that the mighty Rio Grande, which I can see from here, is always dry south of Albuquerque. The riverbed is filled with 4 wheelers and beer drinkers all weekend long, and the whole riverbed is a mess of tire tracks and debris. People even go to the middle of the dry river with grills and chairs and have a cookout, which actually seems like fun. Wandered up north to check this out, following the river until I came across the big dam on the Isleta Pueblo, which holds all the water and fish back from getting past it. There is plenty of water there, everything is full, all the irrigation ditches are flowing, the land is green, all is good. Is it legal for the Pueblo to hold back all the water??? Yes, I know that they are technically their own "nation", but I always thought there might be be some federal laws that overule this and prevent all the water from being stopped. The dam, fyi, is reached from the Isleta Pueblo exit south of Rt 47 exit off of Rt 25. What do you think???
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Old 09-17-2012, 09:47 AM
 
Location: Albuquerque
5,553 posts, read 9,123,567 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CountryCarr View Post
What do you think???
I think it is likely that the pueblo has water rights to the water they are diverting. As a matter of fact, I would bet on it and I don't gamble.

It has been well-publicized that the river is going to be dry in a lot of places this year due to low water flow.

Some chile fields South of here are going unplanted due to this situation.

The historical record shows that there are many cycles of drought that last many years.
Whole civilizations have shriveled-up and died because of it - possibly due to other periods
of global warming, but not confirmed.

In the future, this will have interesting ramifications for Albuquerque.
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Old 09-17-2012, 10:43 AM
N8!
 
2,450 posts, read 2,194,129 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CountryCarr View Post
Thought it is odd that the mighty Rio Grande, which I can see from here, is always dry south of Albuquerque. The riverbed is filled with 4 wheelers and beer drinkers all weekend long, and the whole riverbed is a mess of tire tracks and debris. People even go to the middle of the dry river with grills and chairs and have a cookout, which actually seems like fun. Wandered up north to check this out, following the river until I came across the big dam on the Isleta Pueblo, which holds all the water and fish back from getting past it. There is plenty of water there, everything is full, all the irrigation ditches are flowing, the land is green, all is good. Is it legal for the Pueblo to hold back all the water??? Yes, I know that they are technically their own "nation", but I always thought there might be be some federal laws that overule this and prevent all the water from being stopped. The dam, fyi, is reached from the Isleta Pueblo exit south of Rt 47 exit off of Rt 25. What do you think???
That dam at Isleta services all of Valencia County's irrigation/flood control needs. It's run by the US Dept of the Interior's Bureau of Reclamation (Middle Rio Grande Conservancy District) not the Pueblo.

Perhaps a wee bit of research might address your "concern?"
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Old 09-18-2012, 10:44 AM
 
Location: Albuquerque
5,553 posts, read 9,123,567 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by N8! View Post
That dam at Isleta ... Perhaps a wee bit of research might address your "concern?"
Doesn't posting to c-d count? I didn't know that stuff either and I'll bet lots of others didn't either.
Now we all do thanks to your depth of knowledge.

The only thing I really know is that someone or some entity can't just drill or tap a flowing
water source without rights to that water. It's possible to have water flowing across your
property or under it and not have any rights to it.

In some cases, it's not even your right to capture the rain that falls on your house.
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Old 09-18-2012, 10:56 AM
 
Location: Londonderry, NH
33,275 posts, read 27,552,144 times
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Western Water Law is based on the old Spanish law developed in an arid climate. The basic principal is "Prior Appropriation", meaning the first claim counts most, and the water can be seperated from the land ownership. Then it gets really complicated. For more information you should contact the NM state engineer's office. IIRC they regulate water use in NM.
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Old 09-18-2012, 11:35 AM
N8!
 
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It gets really complicated with CO, NM, TX, Mexico all in the mix for Rio Grande water rights/demands/allocations..
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Old 09-18-2012, 11:46 AM
N8!
 
2,450 posts, read 2,194,129 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mortimer View Post
Doesn't posting to c-d count?


Not really. Mainly because the OP stated that Isleta was keeping water from releasing into the river blow their pueblo and just wanted to know if that action was legal (see below):

Quote:
Originally Posted by CountryCarr View Post
Wandered up north to check this out, following the river until I came across the big dam on the Isleta Pueblo, which holds all the water and fish back from getting past it. There is plenty of water there, everything is full, all the irrigation ditches are flowing, the land is green, all is good. Is it legal for the Pueblo to hold back all the water??? Yes, I know that they are technically their own "nation", but I always thought there might be be some federal laws that overule this and prevent all the water from being stopped. The dam, fyi, is reached from the Isleta Pueblo exit south of Rt 47 exit off of Rt 25. What do you think???

Quote:
Originally Posted by mortimer View Post
I didn't know that stuff either and I'll bet lots of others didn't either.
Now we all do thanks to your depth of knowledge.
Don't mention it, it's the least I can do.

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Old 09-18-2012, 12:22 PM
 
2,892 posts, read 2,601,717 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by N8! View Post
That dam at Isleta services all of Valencia County's irrigation/flood control needs. It's run by the US Dept of the Interior's Bureau of Reclamation (Middle Rio Grande Conservancy District) not the Pueblo.
Irrigation is the operative word. The water is used for agriculture.

The drinking water comes from underground acquifers, that are diminishing due to excessive water use and increased population.
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Old 09-18-2012, 05:48 PM
N8!
 
2,450 posts, read 2,194,129 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MissNM View Post
Irrigation is the operative word. The water is used for agriculture.

The drinking water comes from underground acquifers, that are diminishing due to excessive water use and increased population.
El Paso gets a lot of its drinking water from the Rio Grande.

U.S. Internation Boundary & Water Commission
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Old 09-18-2012, 06:35 PM
 
Location: Old Town
1,634 posts, read 1,401,044 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by N8! View Post
El Paso gets a lot of its drinking water from the Rio Grande.

U.S. Internation Boundary & Water Commission
Doesn't Alb get some water from the rio also?
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