Salinity Trends in the Amistad Reservoir of the Rio Grande

by Juan Ludwig,
Alberto Passos,



Document Type: Proceeding Paper

Part of: WRPMD'99: Preparing for the 21st Century

Abstract: (No paper) The Rio Grande River is a vital resource to the hundreds of thousands of inhabitants of the Texas-Mexico border. Different sections of the river are experiencing trends of increasing salinity. Although no primary water quality standards are established for this parameter, limits have been set to protect human health, livestock, and to prevent damage to crops. Salinity concentrations also constraint industrial applications. This work is an investigation: first on the resulting salinity concentration in the International Amistad Reservoir, assuming current loads are maintained; and, on the potential consequences of the resulting salinity values to the designated uses for this reservoir. The benefits of available management strategies, such as those to be applied in the Malaga Bend Project on the Pecos River, one of the reservoir tributaries, will be assessed. Residual salinity concentration in the International Amistad Reservoir is being assessed through mass balance about this water body. Salt loads were obtained using flow and quality data for three gauging stations monitored by the International Boundary Water Commission (IBWC). Quality data from wells adjacent to the reservoir are currently being analyzed.

Subject Headings: Reservoirs | Salinity | Water quality | Salt water | Public health and safety | Systems management | Rivers and streams | High-rise buildings | Rio Grande

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