State of New Mexico > Environment Department > Surface Water Quality Bureau

Surface Water Quality Bureau
Watershed Protection Section

The Upper Pecos
Watershed-Based Plan

The Upper Pecos Watershed-Based Plan...  Download the 4.7 MB PDF today!

US EPA Accepts Watershed-Based Plan
for the Upper Pecos Watershed

In New Mexico, watershed-based planning (WPB) is an important component of the Nonpoint Source Management Plan. More than a requirement for on-the-ground Section 319 funding, watershed-based planning helps foster communication and coordination between people, organizations, and programs working to protect and restore the environment.

The United States Environmental Protection Agency (US EPA) recently completed their review and acceptance of the WPB for the Upper Pecos Watershed, now making the State of New Mexico eligible for continued CWA Section 319 funding for additional projects consistant with this WPB and the NPS Management Plan.

The Upper Pecos watershed is part of the larger Rio Grande Basin, located in north-central New Mexico about ten to twenty miles east of Santa Fe. The area covered by this WBP extends from the headwaters of the Pecos River and its upper tributaries in the Sangre de Cristo Mountains to the point where Interstate Highway 25 crosses the Pecos, below its confluences with Cow Creek and El Rito. The watershed includes the communities of Pecos, Tererro, Cowles, Glorieta, Upper and Lower Colonias, North and South San Ysidro, Rowe, and San Jose. The village of Pecos is the only incorporated municipality in the watershed.

Abraham Franklin
Program Manager
(505) 827-2793

Upper Pecos WBP 4.7 MB Download the 4.7 MB PDF file today...
US EPA Letter 119 kb Download the 119 kb PDF file today...


Bulleted item Pecos Headwaters Watershed TMDL (2013)
Bulleted item Upper Gallinas River WPB (2012)
Bulleted item Gallinas Watershed Thinning FINAL Monitoring Report (2007-2009)
Bulleted item Gallinas Watershed Thinning INTERIM Monitoring Report (2007)
Bulleted item Gallinas River Watershed Resoration Action Strategy (2005)
Bulleted item TMDL for the Pecos Headwaters Watershed (2005)
Bulleted item Water Quality Survey Summary for the Upper Pecos River Watershed, Part I - 2001 (2004)
Bulleted item Water Quality Survey Summary for the Upper Pecos River Watershed, Part II - 2001 (2004)
Bulleted item Water Quality Survey Summary for the Upper Pecos River Watershed, Part III - 2001 (2004)
Bulleted item Water Quality Assessment of the Gallinas River and Tecolote Creek - 2001 (2002)


Bulleted item... Rio Nutrias WBP released
Bulleted item... Technical Guide #1:
Wetland Functions
Bulleted item... Technical Guide #2:
Characterization and Restoration of Slope Wetlands in New Mexico
Bulleted item... Paso del Norte WBP
Bulleted item... Spring 2015 Clearing The Waters Newsletter
Bulleted item... 2014 NPS Annual Report
Bulleted item... 2014 US EPA-Approved NPS Management Plan

Within the upper Pecos watershed there are reaches of six streams that fail to meet water quality standards - the Pecos River, Cow Creek, Willow Creek, Macho Creek, Dalton Canyon Creek, and Glorieta Creek - because of excessive water temperatures, sediment, conductivity, and/or nutrient levels. In addition, New Mexico Water Quality Control Commission (WQCC) regulations provide for non-degradation of water quality in situations where standards are now being attained.

While information needs in other watersheds may be very different, the Upper Pecos Watershed Plan provides an example application of nine planning elements published by US EPA in the Nonpoint Source Program and Grants Guidelines for States and Territories in the October 2003 Federal Register.  We hope this example will be useful for planning efforts in other New Mexico watersheds. 

For more information, please contact Abe Franklin at the e-address or phone number provided above.


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