The Bureau of Reclamation is preparing an environmental impact statement for the proposed design and building of the Pojoaque Basin Regional Water System, Santa Fe County, New Mexico. The proposed system shall have two portions: a Pueblo Water Facility to serve the Pueblos of Nambe, Pojoaque, San Ildefonso, and Tesuque; and a County Distribution System to serve water customers on non-pueblo land in the Pojoaque Basin. A county water utility will be formed and the regional water system will divert and distribute potable water to the county water utility and the Pueblos. The regional water system will consist of surface water diversion facilities at San Ildefonso Pueblo on the Rio Grande, and treatment, transmission, storage, and distribution facilities, and well fields that will supply up to 4,000 acre-feet of water annually to customers within the Pojoaque Basin.
The Pojoaque Basin Regional Water System is described in the Aamodt Litigation Settlement Act, which was signed into law on December 8, 2010 (Public Law 111-291, Title VI; 124 Stat. 3065). The settlement act provides for settlement of water rights claims in the Pojoaque Basin including claims of the Pueblos of Nambe, Pojoaque, San Ildefonso, and Tesuque, the city of Santa Fe, and the county of Santa Fe. The settlement act implements a settlement agreement signed January 19, 2006, among the United States, the county of Santa Fe, the city of Santa Fe, and the four Pueblos, and allows for the annual diversion of up to 4,000 acre-feet per year and the construction of the regional water system to treat and distribute the water to the residents of the basin.
As described in the Aamodt Litigation Settlement Act, Congress is requiring compliance with relevant laws protecting the environment, including but not limited to the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969 and the Endangered Species Act of 1973. Pursuant to the NEPA, Reclamation is the lead federal agency in preparation of an environmental impact statement that will describe the existing environment and environmental impacts of the proposed Pojoaque Basin Regional Water System.