The Taos Valley Acequia Association's mission is to ensure the long-term sustainability of our traditional agricultural community by protecting water rights and preserving and strengthening the acequia system.
We fulfill this mission by educating, informing, advising, and assisting acequias and their parciantes about their water rights, the laws and regulations pertaining to their water rights, and the historical uses, agreements, and customs related to acequias and water use and conservation.
Founded as a 501(c)(3) non-profit in 1989, TVAA supports 54 acequias used by an estimated 15,000 parciantes, or small-scale farmers and ranchers. Acequias are irrigation ditches that use gravity to distribute water, and they have been inextricably linked to the health of our environment and community in Northern New Mexico.
TVAA is a hub for systems change strategies and community education at the grassroots level. We recognize and advocate for the continued use and maintenance of acequias as sustainable, ecologically sound and democratic methods of farming, as well as a part of our living communal heritage that supports traditional methods of food production and preparation, ecosystem sustainability, ancestral learning, and oral customs.
We utilize two key strategies to support our vision of a sustainable Northern New Mexico's acequia system in Northern New Mexico
On the macro level, TVAA advocates at the State and Federal level for:
Policy change to support continued equitable distribution of water to small-scale farmers and ranchers in rural communities;
Changes in modern corporate agricultural practices that place water resources in peril by increasing pollution and the effects of climate change;
Increased recognition of acequias as a just and ecologically sound water distribution system.
On the micro level, TVAA serves Taos County by:
Providing a platform that sustains acequias, their parciantes, and associated cultural and agricultural practices;
Providing thousands of individual parciantes, or small-scale ranchers and farmers, with affordable, equitable, and ecologically-sound irrigation practices;
Supporting opportunities for the continued viability of local watersheds for generations to come.