February 3, 2023 – The long-running dispute between New Mexico and Texas over Rio Grande water rights is inching toward resolution.
The dispute arose almost 10 years ago over Texas’ allegation that New Mexico’s groundwater pumping was pulling water out of the river, depriving Texas of its rights under the 1938 Rio Grande Compact.
Last October, Texas, New Mexico, and Colorado had reached an agreement in the form of a proposed Consent Decree, but the proposed decree was under seal. It was finally unsealed January 23 (PDF link to the proposed Consent Decree). The firm Husch Blackwell LLP writes that, “Though the Department of Justice opposes it, the proposed Consent Decree will likely be approved by the appointed Special Master and ultimately forwarded to the U.S. Supreme Court for approval.”