Skip to Main Content
It looks like you're using Internet Explorer 11 or older. This website works best with modern browsers such as the latest versions of Chrome, Firefox, Safari, and Edge. If you continue with this browser, you may see unexpected results.

Southwest Water Resources: Water Rights

New Mexico State Resources

NM Water Rights Reporting System (NMWRRS)

NMWRRS provides on-line access to the New Mexico Office of the State Engineer (OSE) water rights files including: electronic images of water rights documents, downloadable well reports, driller license reports, point of diversion reports, and subdivision reports.

New Mexico Adjudications and Settlements

Adjudication determines who owns what water rights and in what amount. They are required by statute. The purpose of adjudication is to obtain a judicial determination and definition of water rights within each stream system or underground basin so that the State Engineer may effectively perform water rights administration and meet New Mexico’s interstate stream obligations. The State Engineer is responsible for active adjudications, many of which have separate sections currently underway in federal and state courts in New Mexico. About 20 percent of the state has been adjudicated. More than 50 percent of the state has adjudications in progress. Active cases, hydrographic surveys, and settlements can all be viewed on the website for the Office of the State Engineer.

New Mexico Real-Time Water Measurement Information System

The New Mexico Office of the State Engineer/Interstate Stream Commission (OSE/ISC) engages in Active Water Resource Management (AWRM). This allows the State Engineer to actively manage the state's limited water resources while administering water rights and interstate compacts throughout the state. In order to do this, the OSE/ISC maintains a network of stream, acequia, ditch and well monitoring sites that electronically transmits data values via radio and satellite telemetry and stores the data in a database. This real-time water measurement data is available for each active gage/well shown on select basin maps. To find a specific gage/well click on the appropriate area on the state map.

National Resources

Native American Water Rights Settlement Project 

The Native American Water Rights Settlement Project is a collection of documents that formalize recognition of Native American water rights in the United States. The project is supported by the Native American Rights Fund, the National Congress of American Indians and the Western States Water Council. The repository arranges by documents by settlement. It includes a map search-tool which allows searches by reservation/Tribe, by state, by hydrological unit and by document type. Red lines indicate reservations, green-fill with red borders indicate reservations with documents, dotted lines indicate states and blue lines indicate hydrological units. 


Water Compacts

By Archinia [CC BY-SA 3.0  (], from Wikimedia Commons

In Our Collection