Senator Jeff Bingaman from New Mexico introduced Senate Bill 1957 in 2003, which would come to be the United States-Mexico Transboundary Aquifer Assessment Act (US Public Law 109-448). It was signed into law by the President of the United States on December 22, 2006.
The Act specifically designates the Hueco Bolson/Valle de Juarez, Mesilla/Conejos- Medanos, Santa Cruz, and San Pedro as priority transboundary aquifers for study under the program.
The TAAP is a joint effort between Mexico and the US to evaluate shared priority aquifers. Funds have been provided by each country to conduct research and accomplish the objectives of the TAAP. Funding in the US has been divided equally among the WRRIs and the USGS Water Science Centers in TX, NM, and AZ.
NM WRRI and NMSU are working in close collaboration with the USGS NM Water Science Center to improve understanding of groundwater in the Mesilla aquifers. The NM team is tasked with achieving a better understanding of the Mesilla Basin aquifer through four major research efforts by NMSU and NMT faculty and their students.
The TAAP encompasses three states in the US, two Mexican states, several universities and a variety of federal and state agencies on both sides of the border. Numerous research projects and coordination efforts have been undertaken by the Cooperating Agencies to collaboratively develop a better understanding of the shared resources to better manage groundwater on both sides of the border.
TAAP Team Members Present at the AWRA 2018 Summer Conference
At the AWRA 2018 Summer Specialty Conference on The Science, Management and Governance of Transboundary Groundwater in Ft. Worth, Texas, the TAAP team from across the three US states and representatives from Mexico came together to present on the latest TAAP funded research and attend the conference. On Monday, July 9th, The Transboundary Aquifer Assessment Program Session was held and included presentations from Sharon Megdal (AZ WRC), Avery Olshefski (NM WRRI), James Callegary (AZ USGS), and Jacob Petersen-Perlman (AZ WRC). Eight other researchers funded under the TAAP from the USGS Science Centers and Water Institutes presented their work during Tuesday’s sessions. This conference served as a great opportunity to discuss and get the word out about the TAAP. Pictured above is the TAAP team members at the AWRA Conference along with other notable researchers in the field of transboundary groundwater.