Faculty and Staff in the NMSU Department of Geography and Environmental Studies  participate in a range of sponsored projects in cooperation with various federal agencies and private businesses. The majority of these are directed through the department's Spatial Applications Research Lab.


WRAST - Water Resiliency Assessment Tool

  • Water Resiliency Assessment Tool (WRAST) looks to facilitate water resources planning at installation, command, and enterprise levels; assess short-and long-term conditions that affect water security, including fresh water sources and supply trends, water quality issues, competing demands, and water treatment and delivery infrastructure conditions.
  • Partnered with AGEISS, an energy and sustainability company, and EGC Inc., an environmental, geosciences, and construction management consulting services, NMSU geography faculty and graduate students created an interactive GIS map to better assess the spatial elements of water security.


BLM OMDPNM User Surveys

  • The Organ Mountains Desert Peaks National Monument (OMDPNM) was established by a presidential proclamation on 21 May 2014, with the intent to protect the resources, objects, values and values that lie within the 496,330 acres of the Monument.
  • As part of an effort to support the development of the Monument’s  Resource Management Plan, NMSU SpARC staff partnered with researchers at the University of Alaska Fairbanks, Arizona State University, and Colorado Mesa University to conduct the “Organ Mountains-Desert Peaks National Monument Outcomes Focused Management Study.” This study involved a series of focus group sessions and an extensive field survey of monument users that produced two project reports:

    • “Organ Mountains-Desert Peaks National Monument Outcomes Focused Management Study, Visitors Survey.”

    • “Organ Mountains-Desert peaks National Monument Outcomes Focused Management Study, Web Survey.”

BLM/OMDPNM - Webmap Portal

  • On 12 April 2016, NMSU and the local office of the Bureau of Land Management signed a memorandum of understanding to support the development of a resource management plan for the Monument.
  • To advance this work, NMSU was tasked with developing educational and outreach materials. As part of this educational and outreach work, NMSU staff have developed this StoryMap portal that provides descriptions, maps, and photographs of select hikes in the Monument.


NMSU ACES Food Atlas – Webmap portal

  • Agriculture and food businesses are core components of New Mexico’s food system. The system’s strength is vital to the health and prosperity of New Mexico farmers, ranchers, residents, families, and communities. The goal of the Resilience in New Mexico Agriculture project is to establish a resilient New Mexico agriculture and food system capable of withstanding new challenges, while strengthening and growing the state’s agriculture and food processing sectors, and promoting a robust local food system to meet growing consumer and institutional demand in the state for locally produced and processed food. The project, a joint New Mexico Cooperative Extension and New Mexico First effort begun in 2016, seeks to address unprecedented challenges to the health of New Mexico’s agriculture and food businesses–issues no one farmer, rancher or business can tackle alone.

  • To facilitate New Mexico producers and supply chain businesses to seize this market opportunity, the New Mexico Cooperative Extension Service, in collaboration with the NMSU Department of Geography Spatial Applications Research Center (SpARC), has developed the New Mexico Agriculture and Food Supply Chain Atlas. The Atlas, an online locator map of New Mexico food-related aggregators, processors, warehousing and storage facilities, transportation firms ,farmers’ markets, and commercial kitchens, will enhance opportunities for connecting food producers and consumers in the state.


Paso del Norte Watershed Council - Website portal

  • The Paso del Norte Watershed Council works to address issues related to the establishment and maintenance of a viable watershed, including approximately 430 river miles between Elephant Butte Reservoir in southern New Mexico to the confluence of the Rio Conchos in Presidio County, Texas. These include promoting projects to improve water quality and quantity, ecosystem integrity, the quality of life, and economic sustainability in the Paso del Norte watershed. The Paso del Norte Watershed Council also provides a forum for exchanging information about any and all activities on the Rio Grande.

  • This Website hosts elements that include “Watershed 101” background information on watersheds,  basic details of the Watershed’s geography, a rich archive of meeting documents and other reference works, and a portal that houses the Coordinated Database and GIS Data Project.