The impact of climate uncertainties is already evident in the border communities of the United States and Mexico. This semi-arid to arid border region has faced increased vulnerability to water scarcity, propelled by droughts, warming atmosphere, population growth, ecosystem sensitivity, and institutional asymmetries between the two countries. In this study, we assessed the annual water withdrawal, which is essential for maintaining long-term sustainable conditions in the Santa Cruz River Aquifer in Mexico, which is part of the U.S.–Mexico Transboundary Santa Cruz Aquifer.
Mary-Belle Cruz Ayala
Abstract: In the parched Upper Santa Cruz River Basin (USCRB), a binational USA–Mexico basin, the water resources depend on rainfall-triggered infrequent flow events in ephemeral channels to recharge its storage-limited aquifers. In-situ data from the basin highlight a year-round warming trend since the 1980s and a concerning decline in average precipitation (streamflow) from 1955–2000 to 2001–2020 by 50% (87.6%) and 17% (63%) during the winter and summer, respectively.
In Mexico, one hundred of the 188 most important aquifers dedicated to agriculture and human consumption are over-exploited and 32 are a ected by seawater intrusion in coastal areas. Considering that Mexico relies on groundwater, it is vital to develop a portfolio of alternatives to recover aquifers and examine policies and programs regarding reclaimed water and stormwater. Managed Aquifer Recharge (MAR) may be useful for increasing water availability and adapting to climate change in semi-arid regions of Mexico.