News, May 26: “Water and Growth”

Please reconsider

Santa Fe’s water project to pump treated effluent to the Rio Grande is an energy-wasting solution to a problem that doesn’t exist. Rather than rushing it into existence as the city is currently doing, it should be put on pause while the community evaluates, in a transparent process:

1. How much more water we really need, when we currently have over 20,000 acre-feet of water rights with pipes, pumps and tanks to deliver them, and are using less than half of that;

2. Alternatives to this project that would pump water in a circle. Partially treated water would be pumped to the Rio Grande at the Buckman Diversion site (it’s not all downhill), and river water, treated to clarify its considerable sediment load, would be pumped back uphill to Santa Fe. How does this help the city achieve its goal of carbon neutrality in its energy use by 2040?

3. The project is designed to exploit “return flow credits,” a weird quirk of water law that allows you to pump more than your actual water right if you return a portion of your initial withdrawal to the hydrologic system. In the real world, that means that more water would be withdrawn from the beleaguered Rio Grande, already desperately impacted by drought and overdiversion.

Councilors, please reconsider.

Paige Grant

Santa Fe

Opinion, May 26: “No Justice”

On the losing end

With regard to the brief, but true and timely editorial by Mr. John Remaly “No Justice”—and combined with various other media reports around Santa Fe, regarding the destruction of the obelisk, leads some to believe that—the new touchy/feely, pro-Anglo DA, who favors as punishment a poorly chosen, unfair mediation program, is not suited to be top law enforcement officer.

This, and other factors, which have come to light: the mayor’s obvious favoritism toward the radical Red Nation and Three Sisters groups; various media that unjustly, continually favor any Native American’s issues; some laid-back, hardly informed and seemingly timid Hispanic groups; and media reports of even some local priests warning of anti-Hispanic trends among Santa Feans—all combine to keep many Hispanics on a -non-deserved, losing end of critical issues.

Elmer Maestas

Santa Fe


A story in last week’s Summer Guide incorrectly stated the end date for the Museum of Indian Arts and Culture’s Clearly Indigenous exhibit. It runs through June 16, 2022.