Oklahoma Water Resources Center

Newcomer from New Mexico

2017 Student Water Conference Participants

Newcomer from New Mexico

Befekadu Habteyes

The Oklahoma Water Resources Center will host the annual Student Water Conference March 23-24, 2017.

This year, there will be several out-of-state student participants visiting Oklahoma State University for their first Student Water Conference. Befekadu Goraw Habteyes, a doctorate student at New Mexico State University, is one of these newcomers. Habteyes completed his undergraduate studies at Haramaya University in Ethiopia. He is currently involved in a study abroad program, studying water science and management in the agricultural economics and agricultural business department of NMSU.

Habteyes will give a presentation on his research project titled, “Economic Performance of Water Conservation and Storage Capacity Development to Adapt to Climate in the American Southwest.” The presentation focuses on the economic analysis of a conservation policy involving canal lining in the Arch Hurley Conservancy District, New Mexico. The canals are mostly unlined and contribute water loss through seepage.

Water resource management is an important issue around the world, especially in areas like New Mexico where water resources can be scarce. Habteyes seeks to “develop a general model and decision-making tool for the growers, irrigation district managers, policy makers and others that will enable economically optimum allocations of water and land.”

This project has drawn great attention from officials in the area who are eager to implement new policy measures based on the student’s research. These policy changes could greatly benefit water conservation efforts in the area through sustainable water resource practices.

The doctorate student has worked persistently to identify key choices involving relevant variables and the outcome of those choices through this water research project.

“In the economic analysis process, there is a need to understand the hydrologic, agronomic, and geologic characteristics of water so that one may easily simulate the integrated system and forecast the future based on the value it delivers,” said Habteyes.

Beyond having gained analytical knowledge through his studies, Habteyes witnessed the great need of proper water resource management through travel in diverse agricultural areas of the world.

During his time at Haramaya University and Public Service College of Oromia, Habteyes traveled through many different agricultural areas in Ethiopia. This experience inspired him to pursue a career in research, specifically water sustainability research. He hopes to improve the standard of living as well as promote agricultural business in the world around him.

Habteyes said that after working diligently through undergraduate school, he was overjoyed to receive admission to study at NMSU. Upon admission, he immediately submitted a water research project idea raised by his professor. That project covered the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam and was published by the Journal of Hydrology. Read more about his first research project here: https://water-research.nmsu.edu/files/2016/09/Nile-JH.pdf.

Habteyes and hardworking students like him will be presenting their research projects at the Student Water Conference March 23-24, 2017.  This conference will be an excellent opportunity to learn more about the water research being done by students around the country and how that research will impact the world. To register or learn more about the conference, visit www.water.okstate.edu/swc.
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REPORTER/MEDIA CONTACT:
Sean Hubbard
Communications Specialist
Agricultural Communications Services
145 Agriculture North
Oklahoma State University
Stillwater, OK 74078
Phone: 405-744-4490
Fax: 405-744-5739
Email: sean.hubbard@okstate.edu

REPORTER/MEDIA CONTACT:
Emily E. Horton
Communications Student Worker
Oklahoma Water Resources Center
245 Agriculture Hall
Oklahoma State University
Stillwater, OK 74078
Phone: 405-744-5615
Fax: 405-744-5339
Email: emily.e.horton@okstate.edu

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