Using water efficiently
- Water is used at most of PNM's power plants, including
the San Juan Generating Station, for cooling systems and
cleaning of equipment and facilities. San Juan has cooling
towers that condense the steam used in the turbines back
into water so it can be reused. Through a series of complex
processes, water is reused, at least 10 times and as many
as 50 to 100 times, before it evaporates.
- Unit 3 at San Juan has a "hybrid" cooling tower
one that can run in both wet and dry modes.
- Installation of low-flow faucets and low-flush toilets
at company office facilities in Albuquerque. All facilities
have also been converted to Xeriscape landscaping with very
minimal grass areas.
Exploring water conservation alternatives
- Participation in the Zero Net Initiative, a partnership
between Los Alamos National Laboratory, the Electric Power
Research Institute and PNM. Zero Net's goal is to meet increasing
electricity demand with a zero net increase in fresh water
used for power plant cooling by 2010.
- Received a $460,000 grant with EPRI to study the use of
produced water high saline-concentration water from
deep aquifers that is brought to the surface during oil
and gas production for use at San Juan.
- Participation in a study with Sandia National Laboratories,
the Department of Energy and New Mexico Tech to quantify
San Juan Basin water volumes, chemistry and alternative
- Participation in the 2003 San Juan Basin shortage sharing
recommendations, an unprecedented example of tribal, governmental,
agricultural and industrial water users in the Four Corners
region working together to establish water priorities and
address shortage issues without litigation and prior to
a more serious situation occurring.
Meeting customer needs with minimal
- PNM imports about 30 percent of its power from Palo Verde
Generating Station in Tonopah, Ariz., the only nuclear energy
facility in the world that uses treated sewage effluence
for cooling water. The plant uses effluent water from the
city of Phoenix, where it is treated in an 80-acre reservoir
for use in the plant's cooling waters. More than 20 billion
gallons of this water are recycled each year.
- Development of renewable generation facilities, including
the 200-megawatt New Mexico Wind Energy Center, which is
scheduled to go online in 2003.
- Continued research into development of other minimal water
use generation such as photovoltaic, biomass and geothermal
Learn more about the New
Mexico Wind Energy Center
Learn more about Palo Verde
Nuclear Generating Station
Learn more about
Learn more about San Juan Generating
Station water management efforts