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Texas A&M University School of Law

Water

Texas A&M Law Review

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Subsurface Tension: The Conflicting Laws Of Texas And New Mexico Over Shared Groundwater And New Mexico’S Desire For Regulation, Kameron B. Smith Feb 2020

Subsurface Tension: The Conflicting Laws Of Texas And New Mexico Over Shared Groundwater And New Mexico’S Desire For Regulation, Kameron B. Smith

Texas A&M Law Review

A recent oil boom in Southern New Mexico has resulted in increased hydraulic fracturing operations in the region and, as a result, a steady and reliable supply of water to fuel such operations is required. As New Mexico regulations make it difficult to acquire a steady supply of water within the state, oil and natural gas producers are turning to unregulated areas in Texas, which permit unlimited pumping of groundwater. However, this groundwater is being pumped from the Pecos Valley aquifer, which is the same source of water that New Mexico is regulating within its borders. This issue is only …


Drought And Public Necessity: Can A Common-Law "Stick" Increase Flexibility In Western Water Law?, Robin Kundis Craig Jan 2018

Drought And Public Necessity: Can A Common-Law "Stick" Increase Flexibility In Western Water Law?, Robin Kundis Craig

Texas A&M Law Review

Drought is a recurring—and likely increasing—challenge to water rights administration in western states under the prior appropriation doctrine, where “first in time” senior rights are often allocated to non-survival uses such as commercial agriculture, rather than to drinking water supply for cities. While states and localities facing severe drought have used a variety of voluntary programs to reallocate water, these programs by their very nature cannot guarantee that water will in fact be redistributed to the uses that best promote public health and community survival. In addition, pure market solutions run the risk that “survival water” will become too expensive …