Texas claims New Mexico diverts its water

Jan. 9, 2013 at 10:04 PM
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AUSTIN, Texas, Jan. 9 (UPI) -- A Texas environmental commission wants the U.S. Supreme Court order New Mexico to release water to Texas under a 1938 agreement.

The Texas Commission on Environmental Quality filed its complaint Tuesday, requesting the high court to make New Mexico deliver Texas' share of the Rio Grande River, the Austin American-Statesman reported.

"It is unfortunate that we have had to resort to legal action, but negotiations with New Mexico have been unsuccessful, and Texas is not getting the water that it is allocated and legally entitled to," Commissioner Carlos Rubinstein said.

Texas said in its complaint that New Mexico has avoided a 1938 agreement to deliver the water and instead has illegally allowed surface and underground water connected to the Rio Grande downstream of Elephant Butte reservoir to be diverted.

The complaint reads that the Rio Grande is the primary, and in some places the only, source of water for much of Texas' agricultural land and that on average, Rio Grande water amounts to half the annual water supply for El Paso.

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