Edition 2015

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Water Research

Assistant Professors Advance Water Research at NMSU

Kenneth C. Carroll, Plant and Environmental Sciences

Kenneth C. Carroll, Plant and Environmental Sciences

NMSU possesses comprehensive capabilities in water-related research, education, outreach, and economic development. More than 80 faculty, researchers, and staff from 15 departments, as well as the Agriculture Science Centers and Extension Services, within five colleges offer extensive expertise and experience in water, ranging from hydrology, irrigation, desalination, and environmental effects to water economics, policy, management, and sustainability. Faculty from the college of Engineering, and college of Agricultural Consumer and Environmental Sciences, have been engaged in critical research efforts on water delivery, treatment, usage, and reusage across the nation as part of the NSF funded Re-inventing America’s Urban Water Infrastructure project. In addition, NMSU faculty collaborate with researchers in Mexico and have extended outreach assistance to other nations including Afghanistan, Ethiopia, and Iraq. NMSU continues to help the state of New Mexico solve its water-related issues, including desalination, produced water treatment, water management during drought, and water security. Faculty members who have recently

Pei Xu, Civil Engineering

Pei Xu, Civil Engineering

joined NMSU have enhanced our water-related capabilities. Since joining the Department of Plant and Environmental Sciences, Kenneth C. Carroll’s research activities, funded by US Army Corps of Engineers, have helped reduce the adverse health risks of groundwater contaminants by developing a novel cost-effective in situ chemical oxidation as a viable technology for 1, 4-dioxane. Similarly, Pei Xu, assistant professor of civil engineering, an expert in desalination, produced water treatment, and biological-bioeletrochemical disinfection, has been involved in multi-million dollar projects. She is funded by the Department of Energy and institutions such as Research Partnership to Secure Energy for America, Water Research Foundation, and USA Environment.

New Mexico Water Research Resources Institute

Sam Fernald (left), director of the New Mexico Water Research Resources Institute and John D’Antonio, Deputy District Engineer, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (right), during a press conference on Water Policy Day at New Mexico State Capitol in Santa Fe (Photo courtesy of New Mexico First)

Sam Fernald (left), director of the New Mexico Water Research Resources Institute and John D’Antonio, Deputy District Engineer, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (right), during a press conference on Water Policy Day at New Mexico State Capitol in Santa Fe
(Photo courtesy of New Mexico First)

New Mexico Water Resources Research Institute (WRRI) was founded in 1963 to address the state’s water issues. Based at NMSU, WRRI provides seed funding to researchers across the state to explore innovative approaches for critical activities such as remote sensing, modeling and water management, treatment of produced water generated by oil and gas operations, desalination of brackish water, and utilization of saline water for turfgrass irrigation. WRRI also provides research grants to students in the state’s universities to help train the future generation of water professionals. The institute’s activities are, in part, made possible by the State Legislature and the Office of the Governor. In 2014, New Mexico Legislature appropriated $1 million to WRRI to conduct a state-wide comprehensive water assessment. This funding is in response to the severe drought that the state has been experiencing for the past five years. The massive amount of data collected during this project on inflows and outflows from the state will be condensed and delivered to researchers and policy makers dynamically via a web-based interface to assist them with their activities. For more information, visit wrri.nmsu.edu.