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Bureau Sets Decision-Makers Field Conference

by L. Greer Price, NM Bureau of Mines and Mineral Resources

SOCORRO, N.M., May 7, 2007 – On May 16-18, 2007, the New Mexico Bureau of Geology and Mineral Resources will conduct its fifth Decision-Makers Field Conference, in cooperation with the Office of the State Engineer and a number of other groups who provided technical, financial, and logistic support. This year’s conference will focus on Water Issues on the Middle Rio Grande from San Acacia to Elephant Butte and will be based in Socorro, N.M.

The conferences generally draw 40 to 45 decision makers, by invitation only.

First conducted in 2001, these field conferences are designed to address a wide range of geologic, hydrologic, natural resource, and environmental issues affecting the future of New Mexico and its citizens. Specifically intended for a mix of national, state, and local political leaders, agency heads, industry leaders, environmental leaders, and other decision makers, the conferences provide an opportunity to learn first-hand about natural resource problems, opportunities, and potential solutions from some of the top experts in the field.

The conferences offer a chance to visit many of the sites involved in legislative concerns and to hear balanced opinions regarding current scientific knowledge on these matters. The trips stimulate on-site debates about public policy matters, strategies for growth, and methods for solving problems.

The trips also offer an opportunity for state agencies and disparate groups to demonstrate to decision- makers their ability to work cooperatively and deal constructively with real-world issues.

Previous conferences have addressed diverse topics including Water, Watersheds, and Land Use in the Santa Fe Region; New Mexico’s Energy, Present and Future; Water Resources of the Lower Pecos Region; and Mining in New Mexico.

This year’s conference will include stops along the San Acacia reach of the Rio Grande, addressing topics that include

  • surface water management and infrastructure,
  • the physical and biological framework,
  • agricultural-to-urban water transfers,
  • opportunities for long-term bosque preservation,
  • floodplain issues, and
  • forging a sustainable water policy for the Middle Rio Grande.

The printed guidebook developed to accompany the conference provides a broad overview of these topics in 25 non-technical papers and will be available to the general public following the conference, through the publication sales office at the New Mexico Bureau of Geology and Mineral Resources in Socorro (505-835-5490).

The New Mexico Bureau of Geology and Mineral Resources is a non-regulatory research and service division of the New Mexico Institute of Mining and Technology in Socorro. The bureau has served as the geological survey for the state of New Mexico since 1927.

-NMT-

For more information, contact:

Peter Scholle, State Geologist & Director
New Mexico Bureau of Geology & Mineral Resources
New Mexico Tech
801 Leroy Place
Socorro, NM 87801
(505) 835-5294 or (505) 835-5302

For detailed program information, contact Doug Bland at (505) 466-6696.