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State and federal officials are warning that because drought is no stranger to New Mexico, decisions about water are growing ever more complicated.

The state, with the help of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, has drafted a document that outlines areas where regulations can be streamlined to encourage the treatment and reuse of wastewater that comes from oil and natural gas operations.

The white paper released late last week says oil and gas production in New Mexico generated nearly 38 billion gallons of wastewater in 2017. As the energy sector grows, particularly in the Permian Basin along the Texas-New Mexico border, officials say so will the amount of wastewater.

State energy secretary Ken McQueen says the effort could help relieve the growing demand on the state’s water resources.