Water Resource Management

City of Santa Fe Water understands the importance of strategically planning for our future water needs and uses the most up-to-date science, demand projections, and climate change data to ensure that water supplies are available and sustainable for all our needs for decades.

To do this, we use water resource management, described by the World Bank as the “process of planning, developing, and managing water resources, in terms of both water quantity and quality, across all water uses.” It provides a framework for ensuring enough water supplies for all the needs in our community while considering the potential impacts of climate change and population growth.

We work closely with Santa Fe County Utilities to manage the delivery of high-quality water to our customers in and around the City through a connected transmission and distribution network. We share ownership of the Buckman Regional Water Treatment Plant (BRWTP) and assure backup water supplies to the County.

We also have a long history of working together successfully to plan for the future, and in 2020 we partnered with the County to develop long-range water resource management plans. The planning effort is scheduled to be complete by the end of 2024 and will lead to a water resource plan extending to 2100 for the City of Santa Fe. Keep reading to learn more about the current five-year planning cycle.


Five-Year Water Supply Planning Cycle

The City of Santa Fe Water (City) and the Santa Fe County Utilities Division (County) are engaged in a science-based, community-informed planning cycle to develop long-range water resource management plans. The current planning effort began in 2020 and is scheduled to be completed by the end of 2024. The planning process will be evaluated, refined, and repeated every ten years or as necessary in future years. The planning process will produce long-range water resources plans for the City and County.


Planning Cycle:

2020: Defining the process

2021: Define water supply and demand scenarios out to 2100

2022: Identify supply shortages associated with these scenarios. Develop adaptation strategies.

2023: Evaluate and rank adaptation strategies

2024: Publish Long-Range Water Resources Plans



In 2019, the City of Santa Fe passed resolution 2019-56 calling for developing 40- and 80-year water resource management plans for the City. The City and County are working together on this regional water planning effort to establish a reliable and sustainable water supply to all their water users. The City and the County believe that a transparent, science-based, and community-informed water planning process is the best way to create a representative and actionable water resources management future. A shared planning process ensures a shared understanding of potential future supply and demand scenarios, resulting shortages, and possible adaptations to avoid those shortages.

In the case of the City, a water resource plan extending out to 2100 will be developed, from which information on nearer horizons can be extracted as needed. For the County, this process will inform a 40-year water plan, long-range planning, and capital project spending prioritization. The first cycle, which began in 2020 and is scheduled to be completed by the end of 2024, will be evaluated, refined, and repeated every ten years or as necessary in future years.


2020 Activities and Resources

Webinars and Presentations

Webinars were held on October 19 and 20 repeating the same material. 

Meeting Recording: Overview Webinar 

Water Resources Development & Planning Slides Presented at Webinars

Proposed Water Planning Process & Survey Slides Presented at Webinars

Breakout Small Group Sessions were held on October 25, 26, and 29. 

Additional Resources
Long-Range Water Resource Plans And Studies Archive