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STRENGTHENING SCIENCE-BASED DECISION MAKING IN DEVELOPING COUNTRIES Sustainable Management of Groundwater in Mexico Proceedings of a Workshop Laura Holliday, Luis Marin, and Henry Vaux, Editors Science and Technology for Sustainability Program Policy and Global Affairs THE NATIONAL ACADEMIES PRESS Washington, D.C. www.nap.edu
THE NATIONAL ACADEMIES PRESS 500 Fifth Street, N.W. Washington, DC 20001 NOTICE: The project that is the subject of this report was approved by the Governing Board of the National Research Council, whose members are drawn from the councils of the National Academy of Sciences, the National Academy of Engineering, and the Institute of Medicine. The members of the committee responsible for the report were chosen for their special competences and with regard for appropriate balance. This workshop was supported by the United States Environmental Protection Administration (EPA) and the American Chemistry Council. This summary is funded in part by the EPA via contract number X-83086001. Any opinions, findings, conclusions, or recommendations expressed in this publication are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the organizations or agencies that provided support for the project. International Book Number 13: 978-0-309-10582-8 International Book Number 10: 0-309-10582-X Additional copies of this report are available from the National Academies Press, 500 Fifth Street, N.W., Lockbox 285, Washington, DC 20055; (800) 624-6242 or (202) 334-3313 (in the Washington metropolitan area); Internet, http://www.nap.edu Copyright 2007 by the National Academy of Sciences. All rights reserved. Printed in the United States of America.
The National Academy of Sciences is a private, nonprofit, self-perpetuating society of distinguished scholars engaged in scientific and engineering research, dedicated to the furtherance of science and technology and to their use for the general welfare. Upon the authority of the charter granted to it by the Congress in 1863, the Academy has a mandate that requires it to advise the federal government on scientific and technical matters. Dr. Ralph J. Cicerone is president of the National Academy of Sciences. The National Academy of Engineering was established in 1964, under the charter of the National Academy of Sciences, as a parallel organization of outstanding engineers. It is autonomous in its administration and in the selection of its members, sharing with the National Academy of Sciences the responsibility for advising the federal government. The National Academy of Engineering also sponsors engineering programs aimed at meeting national needs, encourages education and research, and recognizes the superior achievements of engineers. Dr. Wm. A. Wulf is president of the National Academy of Engineering. The Institute of Medicine was established in 1970 by the National Academy of Sciences to secure the services of eminent members of appropriate professions in the examination of policy matters pertaining to the health of the public. The Institute acts under the responsibility given to the National Academy of Sciences by its congressional charter to be an adviser to the federal government and, upon its own initiative, to identify issues of medical care, research, and education. Dr. Harvey V. Fineberg is president of the Institute of Medicine. The National Research Council was organized by the National Academy of Sciences in 1916 to associate the broad community of science and technology with the Academyâs purposes of furthering knowledge and advising the federal government. Functioning in accordance with general policies determined by the Academy, the Council has become the principal operating agency of both the National Academy of Sciences and the National Academy of Engineering in providing services to the government, the public, and the scientific and engineering communities. The Council is administered jointly by both Academies and the Institute of Medicine. Dr. Ralph J. Cicerone and Dr. Wm. A. Wulf are chairman and vice chairman, respectively, of the National Research Council. www.national-academies.org
STEERING COMMITTEE ON STRENGTHENING SCIENCE-BASED DECISION- MAKING IN DEVELOPING COUNTRIES Michael Clegg (Chair) Distinguished Professor of Genetics, Department of Botany and Plant Sciences, University of California, Riverside Thomas Lovejoy President, H. John Heinz III Center for Science, Economics and the Environment Whitney MacMillan Director Emeritus, Cargill, Inc. Perry McCarty Silas H. Palmer Professor Emeritus, Stanford University Roger McClellan President Emeritus, Chemical Industry Institute of Toxicology F. Sherwood Rowland Donald Bren Research Professor of Chemistry and Earth System Science, University of California, Irvine STAFF: John Boright Deputy Executive Director, Policy and Global Affairs Pat Koshel Senior Staff Officer, Science and Technology for Sustainability Program Laura Holliday Senior Program Associate, Science and Technology for Sustainability Program (through 4/28/2006) Derek Vollmer Program Associate, Policy and Global Affairs Division Kathleen McAllister Program Assistant, Policy and Global Affairs Division v
PREFACE During the 2002 World Summit on Sustainable Development (WSSD), the U.S. National Academies, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, and the American Chemistry Council announced a new initiative to facilitate better communication among scientists, policymakers, and other decision-makers so that scientific knowledge more effectively informs public policy and private sector decisions relating to sustainability in developing countries. More specifically, the goals of the initiative are: Foster improved understanding of the science and decision-making process, â¢ including national and local policy, industrial design and planning, and public choices; Establish dialogue in which decision-makers use science to inform their decisions â¢ and scientists consider the needs of decision-makers in their choice of research; Identify gaps between the needs of decision-makers and scientific research â¢ priorities and strategies for bridging these gaps, including ways to increase the professional connection between scientists and decision-makers, and; Share workshop results, via summaries and briefings, with a broader audience of â¢ scientists and decision-makers in the host country and internationally. To achieve these objectives, the organizations involved (see list below) provided support for a series of "science in decision-making workshops" in developing countries on key issues of particular concern to the host country such as water and sanitation, persistent organic pollutants, and biodiversity. The workshops convene representatives from host country and U.S. scientific institutions, government, industry, non-governmental organizations, academic institutions, and other relevant organizations. Crosscutting themes addressed in the workshops include monitoring and data evaluation; elements of good science advice; facilitating the flow of scientific information; and the roles of institutions that link scientists and decision-makers. Workshop topics are proposed by science organizations in developing countries. A steering committee established by the U.S. National Academies reviewed proposals and provided general oversight for the series. The workshop co-chairsâ one from the respective developing country and one from the United States â designed each workshop, which were organized in a collaborative process involving the U.S. National Academies and one or more science organization from the partnering country. vii
The initiative involved the following organizations: â¢ â¢ U.S. National Academies InterAcademy Panel â¢ â¢ Mexican Academy of Sciences American Chemistry Council â¢ â¢ Chinese Academy of Sciences U.S. Environmental Protection Agency â¢ â¢ TWAS, the Academy of Sciences Scientific Committee on Programs of for the Developing World the Environment, China â¢ â¢ H. John Heinz Center for Science, State Environmental Protection Economics, and the Environment Administration of China â¢ National Council for Science and the Environment The initiativeâs first workshop, âStrengthening Science-Based Decision-Making for Sustainable Management of Ground Water in Mexico,â was a joint workshop between the U.S. National Academies and the Mexican Academy of Sciences, and is featured in this report. The workshop was held February 8-10, 2004, in MÃ©rida, Mexico. The workshop was co-chaired by Dr. Luis Marin, Professor of Geology at the Universidad Nacional Autonoma de Mexico (UNAM â National Autonomous University of Mexico) and Dr. Henry Vaux, Professor of Resource Economics and Associate Vice President Emeritus of the University of California, Berkeley. The workshop addressed science-based decision-making in a regional (Yucatan peninsula) and topical (sustainable ground water management) context. Sustainable groundwater management in Mexico was selected as the workshop topic because Mexico, particularly the Yucatan peninsula, faces important groundwater management challengesâsimilar to those faced in some regions of the United Statesâwhich could benefit substantially from improved scientific input into decision-making processes. Over 75 million of Mexicoâs 100 million inhabitants rely on ground water for drinking and other domestic uses. Ground water is also important in supporting the agricultural sector, where it accounts for 57% of total water use. Projected population growth suggests that attention must be given to developing effective and sustainable regimes of ground water management if the nationâs resources are to prove adequate to support anticipated population and economic growth. Despite the importance of ground water resources in Mexico, there is concern about whether these resources are being managed in a sustainable fashion. Key aquifers, such as those supporting the population of Mexico City in the Valley of Mexico, are subject to persistent overdraft. Some coastal aquifers are subject to salt water intrusion and virtually all aquifers in the country are subject to qualitative degradation. Overdraft and quality decline could render substantial proportions of the ground water resource unusable in the future either because of economic exhaustion or water quality degradation. viii
One important step in developing sustainable regimes for the management of ground water resources is to build strong linkages between scientists with groundwater expertise and the managers. The workshop was designed to enhance those linkages. Workshop participants, approximately half from Mexico and half from the United States, included scientists, federal and state government decision-makers, representatives from non-government organizations (NGOs), and the private sector (see Appendix B for a list of participants). The papers included in this volume were submitted by the participants to help frame these discussions. As such, many of the papers do not include the technical detail or exhaustive citations found in a scientific journal. The opinions expressed in the papers do not necessarily reflect the views of all workshop participants, their affiliated organizations, or the National Academies. The report does not contain consensus findings or recommendations from the workshop participants as a whole. Participants considered the following issues: Quality and availability of water resources in the face of continued population and â¢ economic growth; Importance of ground water for domestic consumption and use by industry and â¢ agriculture in the Yucatan peninsula; Economic and public health risks that can result from failure to effectively manage â¢ ground water quality; and Opportunities to improve the stewardship of ground water resources in the â¢ Yucatan and the rest of Mexico with the aid of science. A distinctive feature of the workshop was a concluding roundtable discussion focusing on the identification of the most effective ways of making scientific information available to those charged with ground water policy and decision making. The U.S. workshop chair verbally summarized that discussion â his remarks are included as the first chapter in the proceedings. More information about the program âStrengthening Science-Based Decision-Making in Developing Countriesâ and about the Science and Technology for Sustainability Program is available online at www.nationalacademies.org/sustainability. This workshop proceedings is available online at www.nap.edu. ix
ACKNOWLEDGMENTS We wish to express our sincere thanks to the many individuals who played significant roles in guiding the initiative âStrengthening Science-Based Decision-Making in Developing Countries.â The steering committee provided guidance on the initiativeâs goals; identified appropriate modes of operation; and reviewed all workshop proposals. Steering committee members include: Chairman Michael Clegg, University of California, Riverside; Thomas Lovejoy, H. John Heinz III Center for Science, Economics and the Environment; Whitney MacMillan, Cargill, Inc.; Perry McCarty, Stanford University; Roger McClellan, Chemical Industry Institute of Toxicology; and F. Sherwood Rowland, University of California, Irvine. For the workshop featured in this proceedings âStrengthening Science-Based Decision-Making for Sustainable Management of Groundwater in Mexicoâ workshop co-chairs Dr. Luis E. Marin, Professor of Geology at the Institute of Geophysics of the Universidad Nacional AutÃ³noma de Mexico (UNAM â Mexican National Autonomous University) and Dr. Henry Vaux, Professor of Resource Economics and Associate Vice President Emeritus of the University of California, Berkeley were instrumental in designing the workshop agenda and ensuring productive discussions. El Centro de InvestigaciÃ³n CientÃficas de YucatÃ¡n, A.C. (YucatÃ¡nÂ´s Center for Scientific Research) graciously hosted the workshop, in their Merida facility. Luis E. MarÃn acknowledges a Sabbatical Fellowship from the DirecciÃ³n General de Asuntos del Personal AcadÃ©mico of the Universidad Nacional AutÃ³noma de MÃ©xico (DGAPA-UNAM). This publication was made possible by a grant from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (US EPA) and from the American Chemistry Council. The statements made and views expressed are solely the responsibility of the authors and do not represent the positions of the US EPA, the American Chemistry Council, the U.S. National Academies, the Mexican Academy of Sciences, or other organizations where the authors are employed. This volume has been reviewed in draft form by several individuals chosen for their technical expertise, in accordance with procedures approved by the National Academiesâ Report Review Committee. The purpose of this independent review is to provide candid and critical comments that will assist the institution in ensuring that the report is as sound as possible and meets institutional standards for quality. The review comments and original draft manuscript remain confidential to protect the integrity of the process. We wish to thank the following individuals for their review of this volume: William Alley, U.S. Geological Survey; Gonzalo Merediz Alonso, Amigos de Sian Ka'an A.C.; Katherine Jacobs, University of Arizona; Mario Rebolledo-Vieyra, Centro de Estudios del Agua del Centro de InvestigaciÃ³n Cientificas de YucataÅ, A.C. (YucatÃ¡nÂ´s Center for Scientific Research, Water Studies Research Center); and Birgit Steinich, Centro de Geociencias-Campus QuerÃ©taro, Universidad Nacional AutÃ³noma de MÃ©xico(Geoscience Center, Mexican National Autonomous University-UNAM). xi
Although these reviewers have provided constructive comments and suggestions, they were not asked to endorse the content of the individual papers. Responsibility for the final content of the papers rests with the individual authors. Special thanks are extended in recognition of the important contributions of the following National Academies staff: John Boright, Executive Director of the Office of International Affairs, who provided oversight for the initiative; Pat Koshel, who contributed substantially to planning the workshop; and Derek Vollmer, Zainep Mahmoud and Kathleen McAllister who assisted in editing the report. Laura Holliday, Luis Marin, and Henry Vaux, Editors xii
Contents Chairmanâs Summary 1 Henry Vaux Jr., University of California, Berkeley Freshwater Resources in the Yucatan Peninsula 6 Sam Meacham, CINDAQ An Overview of Mexicoâs Water Regime and the Role of Groundwater 13 Felipe ArreguÃn-CortÃ©s and Mario LÃ³pez-PÃ©rez, ComisiÃ³n Nacional del Agua A Primer on Groundwater Management 26 Michael E. Campana, University of New Mexico The Elements of Scientific Advice 36 Henry Vaux Jr., University of California, Berkeley Where Do Decision-Makers Get Scientific Advice? 44 Sustainable Groundwater Management Decisions Steve E. Ragone, National Groundwater Association The Role of Science in Managing Yucatanâs Groundwater 52 Luis MarÃn, Universidad Nacional Autonoma de Mexico The Hydrology of the Yucatan Pennisula 62 Oscar A. Escolero Fuentes, Universidad Nacional Autonoma de Mexico The Role of Science in Groundwater Management in Arizona 69 Rita P. Maguire, Think AZ The Importance of Monitoring To Groundwater Management 76 William M. Alley, US Geological Survey How Can Managers and Scientists Facilitate the Flow of Scientific Information? 86 Perspectives from Mexico Alfonso LarquÃ©-Saavedra, Centro de InvestigaciÃ³n CientÃfica de YucatÃ¡n Matching Fund Program for Scientific Research: El Consejo Nacional De Ciencia Y TecnologÃa, CONACyT 89 (The National Council on Science and Technology) Oscar VÃ¡zquez, CONACyT xiii
How Can Managers and Scientists Facilitate the Flow of Scientific Information? 91 Perspectives from the United States William R. Mills, Orange County Water District Science and NGOs: Collaboration for the Conservation of 97 Groundwater Resources in the Yucatan Peninsula Gonzalo Merediz Alonso, Amigos de Sian Kaâan Businesses Committed to Sustainable Development: The XCaret Group 103 Ana Lilia Cordova, XCaret Group Appendix A: Workshop Agenda 107 Appendix B: Workshop Participants 111 xiv