An initiative of the Center for Environmental Journalism at the University of Colorado Boulder

New Mexico and Rio Grande Water Journalism Project

We've expanded our support for water journalism in the Southwest.

Supported by the Thornburg Foundation and the Water Funder Initiative

Project announcements

Water Desk to support New Mexico and Rio Grande water journalism

The Water Desk is launching a new program to support water-related journalism in New Mexico and the Rio Grande Basin.

New Mexico and Rio Grande Journalism Project

This page explains how journalists can apply to The Water Desk for funding to support their coverage of water issues connected to New Mexico and the Rio Grande. We will...

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Stories and reports

Once ‘paradise,’ parched Colorado valley grapples with arsenic in water

Decades of climate change-driven drought, combined with the overpumping of aquifers, is making the valley desperately dry — and appears to be intensifying the levels of heavy metals in drinking water.

Farmers weigh tough choices as uncertain water future looms

With unpredictable water resources, farmers in New Mexico must gamble in order to keep their agricultural production viable.

Diverting the Rio Grande into a grown-over, decades-old canal could cut New Mexico’s water...

New Mexico once again owes Texas a massive water debt, so water managers are considering resurrecting the original purpose of the channel.

Amid a withering drought, New Mexico leaders struggle to plan for life with less...

New Mexico faces tough choices as a dire and historic drought continues and the Rio Grande is unable to give everyone what they want or need.

Grantee stories

Once ‘paradise,’ parched Colorado valley grapples with arsenic in water

Decades of climate change-driven drought, combined with the overpumping of aquifers, is making the valley desperately dry — and appears to be intensifying the levels of heavy metals in drinking water.

Farmers weigh tough choices as uncertain water future looms

With unpredictable water resources, farmers in New Mexico must gamble in order to keep their agricultural production viable.

Diverting the Rio Grande into a grown-over, decades-old canal could cut New Mexico’s water...

New Mexico once again owes Texas a massive water debt, so water managers are considering resurrecting the original purpose of the channel.

Amid a withering drought, New Mexico leaders struggle to plan for life with less...

New Mexico faces tough choices as a dire and historic drought continues and the Rio Grande is unable to give everyone what they want or need.

In New Mexico, Partners Collaborate to End Siege from Megafires

Initiative in the Rio Grande basin intends to thwart catastrophic wildfires that wreck watersheds.

New Mexico and Rio Grande data visualizations

Data viz: Elephant Butte Reservoir levels

Last update: September 21, 2022 Percent of total capacity Source: US Bureau of Reclamation

Data viz: Navajo Lake levels

Last update: September 21, 2022 Percent of total capacity Source: US Bureau of Reclamation

Map: Rio Grande drought tracker

This map depicts data from the National Drought Mitigation Center. Drought intensity categories are based on numerous indicators and local reports from more than 350 expert observers around the...

Map: New Mexico drought tracker

This map depicts data from the National Drought Mitigation Center. Drought intensity categories are based on numerous indicators and local reports from more than 350 expert observers around the...

Map: New Mexico monthly precipitation

This map shows total rain and snowfall in the New Mexico every month from 1981 to the present. The map's color scale runs from white (no precipitation), to blue (significant precipitation) to red (intense precipitation)....

Related multimedia

Photos and videos: Rio Grande near Taos Junction Bridge, June 2023

This page features ground-based and drone-captured photos and videos of the Rio Grande in northern New Mexico near the Taos Junction Bridge and the river's confluence with the Rio...

Photos and videos: Rio Chama rafting, May 2023

This page features photos and videos from a wilderness rafting trip on the Rio Chama in northern New Mexico. The Rio Chama is a major tributary of the Rio Grande...

Photos and videos: Rio Grande near San Antonio, New Mexico, August 2022

This page features drone-captured photos and videos of the Rio Grande near San Antonio, New Mexico. Located in the center of the state, the village of San Antonio has fewer...

Photos and videos: Rio Grande near Fort Craig, New Mexico, August 2022

This page features drone-captured photos and videos of the Rio Grande near Fort Craig, New Mexico Established in 1854, Fort Craig was the site of the largest Civil War battle...

Photos: Heron Lake, New Mexico, August 2022

This page features ground-based photos of Heron Lake, a reservoir that stores water for the San Juan-Chama Project in northern New Mexico. Located along Willow Creek, near its confluence with...