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By The Staff

Impure but prized is the Rio Grande water allotted to cities and counties under the San Juan-Chama (SJC) Diversion pact. Los Alamos County’s share is 1,200 acre feet (390 million gallons), which county government foresees pumping from White Rock Canyon.

Along this stretch of river live carp and catfish, which we are advised to eat either infrequently or never by the New Mexico Environment Department (NMED). Similar fish advisories pertain up and down the Rio Grande, from tributaries to reservoirs. At issue in these warnings are levels of polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) in the water and their concentration in fish. Meanwhile, NMED assures us “the PCB levels in Rio Grande water poses no risk to human health through swimming, wading, or drinking,” which is good news for humans planning these very activities for their SJC allotments.


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