Earth and Planetary Sciences ETDs


Sidney R. Ash

Publication Date

Spring 5-27-1961


The economy of northern Lea County is dependent upon groundwater; the only other source of water is the runoff from precipitation that is caught and retained in the man-made or natural reservoirs, where is it used for water stock. Irrigation utilizes most of the groundwater pumped; much smaller amounts are used for stock watering and industrial, public, rural and domestic supplies. In 1958, about 107,000 acre-feet of groundwater was pumped for irrigation and 19,000 acre-feet was pumped for all other uses. On the basis of present production of potable water, the economically usable supply will be depleted in certain areas within about 40 years.

Degree Name

Earth and Planetary Sciences

Level of Degree


Department Name

Department of Earth and Planetary Sciences

First Committee Member (Chair)

J. Paul Fitzsimmons

Second Committee Member

Wolfgang Eugene Elston

Third Committee Member

Roger Yates Anderson




Groundwater Resources, Lea County, New Mexico

Document Type


201610261406_0001.tif (5730 kB)
Figure 2: Topographic map of northern Lea County, N. Mex.

201610261408_0001.tif (710 kB)
Figure 10: Stratigraphic sections of the rocks exposed in Mescalero Ridge, Lea County, New Mexico

201610261404_0001.tif (4395 kB)
Figure 11: Map showing contours on the post-Mesozoic erosional surface in northern Lea County, N. Mex.

201610261403_0001.tif (3676 kB)
Figure 15: Map showing contours on the water table in northern Lea County, N. Mex.

201610261409_0001.tif (3481 kB)
Figure 17: Map of northern Lea County, N. Mex., showing the approximate depth to water in 1952

201610261407_0001.tif (4339 kB)
Figure 18: Map of northern Lea county, N. Mex., showing the saturated thickness of the formations of Cenozoic age in 1952

201610261411_0001.tif (3588 kB)
Figure 20: Map of northern Lea County, N. Mex., showing the chemical quality of ground water