Department of the Environment promotes strategic water supply

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Despite the fact that Congress has not yet approved funding for Strategic Water Supply, the New Mexico Department of Environment has already issued a request for information related to this proposal. The request for information is the first step towards developing this strategic water supply. Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham […]

Despite the fact that Congress has not yet approved funding for Strategic Water Supply, the New Mexico Department of the Environment has already issued a request for information related to this proposal.

The request for information is the first step towards developing this strategic water supply.

Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham announced plans late last year to develop strategic water supplies. According to her proposal, companies would purify produced or brackish water for use in specific environments, such as industrial processes or hydrogen energy production.

“To meet current and future community demands, sustain economic growth, and respond to this moment with unprecedented solutions, Strategic Water Supply is building a safe and resilient water future for our state. ” Lujan Grisham said in a press release. “Strategic water supplies will protect our freshwater and encourage the private sector to turn untapped resources into usable water without asking taxpayers to pay for it.”

The RFI, which closes at the end of March, seeks technical and economic information from a variety of sources, including businesses, academia, government agencies, individuals, and other stakeholders. NMED is particularly interested in information regarding the procurement, treatment, distribution, storage and industrial use of brine and produced water. The water produced is a byproduct of oil and gas production.

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To make the strategic water supply a reality, Congress needs to appropriate $500 million over the next two years.

In the past, proposals to use produced water have been challenged by some members of the environmental community who have concerns about the chemicals used in hydraulic fracturing, including those that oil and gas companies consider proprietary. faced a backlash from produced water.

According to the RFI, if this strategic water supply were to become a reality, the state would purchase treated water based on contractual agreements with individual vendors.

“Initially, New Mexico intends to use contract agreements with individual vendors to facilitate expanded industrial use of treated water,” the RFI states.

Two virtual public meetings will be held as part of the RFI process. The first will be held on February 27th from 5pm to 7pm, and the second on March 1st from 10am to noon.

“This innovative water initiative is essential to fostering New Mexico’s next generation of clean jobs, growing our economy, and protecting our freshwater sources,” said NMED Cabinet Secretary James Kenney. stated in a press release. “New Mexico is responding to the current emergency with this innovative climate and economic solution.”

A call for proposals is likely to be published this summer, along with a project-specific concept paper. The deadline for submission is this fall.

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