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This science and technology gap analysis and research plan was prepared by the New Mexico Produced Water Research Consortium in response to the legislative directive of the 2019 Produced Water Act (HB 546) and a subsequent Memorandum of Understanding with the New Mexico Environment Department.

The gap analysis summarizes gaps in knowledge surrounding the technical, economic, human, and environmental health and safety issues, and concerns associated with the reuse of treated produced water for fit-for-purpose uses outside the oil and gas sector.

The research plan includes the identification of science and technology research, development, and demonstration efforts needed to fill these gaps. The tasks described herein are intended to provide a system-level understanding to reduce the risks of using treated produced water while protecting socio-economic, environmental, and ecological systems in New Mexico.

Intellectual Property

The Consortium is committed to protecting the intellectual property (IP) of the research contractors.  The Consortium will sign non-disclosure agreements (NDA) and has a document management plan that will provide further protection of IP and sensitive information. 

The NM-PWRC research program consists of a portfolio of independent research projects evaluated and approved by the Technical Steering Committee (TSC) with the intent of fast-tracking fit-for-purpose treatment technology research and technology development that can:

  • Accelerate the implementation and acceptance of policies and regulations for the use of treated produced water in New Mexico;
  • Support policies and regulations that protect the environment and human health;
  • Evaluate impact and potential risks associated with produced water reuse; and
  • Serve as a model for the U.S.


Testing Locations

A variety of locations are available to the Consortium for research testing. Locations include the following:

  • Brackish Groundwater National Desalination Research Facility (BGNDRF); Alamogordo, NM
  • Permian Basin; southeast New Mexico
  • San Juan Basin; northwest New Mexico
  • Texas
  • NMSU Carlsbad

Benchscale and pilot testing can be performed at BGNDRF.   Full-scale testing can be performed at a variety of sites in the region.  Cooperative agreements are in place for the Consortium’s use of these sites.


Treatment Technology Research Projects - Schedule