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Supreme Court Invites Solicitor General to File Brief Expressing United States Views on Texas-New Mexico Water Dispute

On April 15, the U.S. Supreme Court invited the U.S. Solicitor General to file a brief expressing the views of the United States regarding a complaint filed in the U.S. Supreme Court by the State of Texas against the State of New Mexico regarding the allocation of water carried by the Rio Grande river. Texas’ complaint alleges that the the Rio Grande Project Act, enacted by the U.S. Congress in 1905, and the Rio Grande Compact, signed in 1938 by Texas, New Mexico and the State of Colorado ("Colorado"), require New Mexico to deliver specified amounts of Rio Grande water into Elephant Butte Reservoir, located near Engle, New Mexico. 

The complaint states that, once delivered to the Elephant Butte Reservoir, the water belongs and should be allocated to beneficiaries in southern New Mexico and Texas. According to the complaint, New Mexico is not allowing an adequate amount of water to pass through to Texas. Among other things, Texas asks that the Supreme Court declare the rights of Texas to the waters of the Rio Grande pursuant to the Rio Grande Compact and the Rio Grande Project Act and command New Mexico to deliver the Rio Grande waters to Texas in accordance with its obligations.

The case is State of Texas v. State of New Mexico and State of Colorado, case No. 22O141 (U.S.). The docket report for the case is available at the Supreme Court’s website.

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About this Author

Edward Grauman, Environmental Lawyer, Beveridge & Diamond Law Firm

Edward M. Grauman’s practice focuses on high-stakes, complex commercial and environmental litigation at both the trial and appellate levels. He works with clients across a wide spectrum of industries, including chemicals, consumer products, financial services, high tech, insurance, media, oil and gas, pharmaceuticals, security services, and telecommunications. His experience across industries and subject-matter areas gives him a deep understanding of the business considerations involved in large-scale disputes and enables him to provide clients with sound strategic...

Karen Hansen, Environmental Lawyer, Beveridge & Diamond Law Firm

Karen M. Hansen’s environmental law practice focuses on the Clean Water Act and state programs for regulating and permitting water discharges and water supply/use.  She has extensive experience assisting industrial and municipal clients in preparing strategies for and pursuing water permits for ongoing operations, expansions and new operations, including permit challenges. Ms. Hansen also represents clients that must defend CWA and state water law enforcement actions, including claims pursued by governmental as well as third party entities. She recently led a multi...

Madeleine Boyer Environmental Attorney Beveridge Diamond

Maddie brings 25 years of experience providing strategic and solutions-oriented counseling and representation on a broad range of US and Latin American environmental, health and safety standards.

Her portfolio includes environmental regulatory counseling; audit oversight and support; supply chain and product stewardship advocacy and compliance; and high-stakes enforcement matters. Her domestic caseload currently includes air and waste matters before the US Department of Justice, the Office of the Attorney General of the State of Texas, the US Environmental...

Laura LaValle, Environmental Lawyer, Beveridge & Diamond Law Firm

Laura LaValle is the Managing Principal and a founder of Beveridge & Diamond’s Texas office, and is Co-Chair of the Firm’s Air Practice Group.  Her practice has focused on Clean Air Act matters for the past eighteen years.  Ms. LaValle’s air quality experience includes advising and representing entities on a broad range of permitting, compliance, and policy issues.  She has represented chemical manufacturing operations, electric utilities, petroleum refineries, municipal solid waste landfills, steel manufacturing facilities, mining operations, municipal waste combustors, trade...