Non-federal Water Management and Maintenance Activities on the Middle Rio Grande, New Mexico
This biological assessment includes the Bureau of Reclamation’s and the Middle Rio Grande Conservancy District’s water management actions taken in the Middle Rio Grandefrom Velarde to Elephant Butte Reservoir Pool and in the Rio Chama, as well as associated maintenance actions to maintain water delivery and protect infrastructure. These maintenance actions also include the cooperative actions of Reclamation and the Interstate Stream Commission. The BA includes, as the conservation measure, the offsetting actions taken by participants of the Middle Rio Grande Endangered Species Collaborative Program/Recovery Implementation Program, known collectively as “Collaborative Program/RIP.” The analysis for this BA is divided into two parts. The water management portion (Part I) is intended to cover specifically described actions that Reclamation and the MRGCD carry out. The maintenance portion (Part II) is designed to be a programmatic description of Reclamation’s River Maintenance Program, as well as a description of specific maintenance actions on riverside drains in conjunction with the Interstate Stream Commission and MRGCD maintenance actions on diversion structures and riverside delivery systems.
This BA also initiates the Endangered Species Act Section 7 compliance process associated with the Collaborative Program/RIP. It is intended that compliance with the contemplated biological opinions associated with this BA and an anticipated supplement describing the proposed actions for the state of New Mexico and other non-federal, non-pueblo actions, in combination with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineer’s BA, will convey ESA coverage for those actions, including the aforementioned Collaborative Program/RIP conservation measure.
- Transmittal Letter - January 15, 2013 [PDF]