The Sonoran state government is building a controversial pipeline (Independencia pipeline) that will connect the state's largest reservoir (Presa Novillo) on the Rio Yaqui with the state's capitol city of Hermosillo. Construction is well under way with the first water to be expected around the end of 2012. Projected cost of the project is $323.3 million U.S. dollars, but completion date and cost estimates may not hold.
The heavy steel pipe used for the pipeline appears to be around 1.5 meters in diameter and is being burried in a trench around 3-6 meters in depth.
The pipeline primarily follows Highway 20, which goes from Hermosillo to Bacanora and Sahuaripa, but cuts away from the highway as it hits rugged topography before reaching the reservoir.
Blading of natural areas, primarily thornscrub, is generally close to the highway and about 25 to 40 meters wide.
Some groups including the Yaqui people oppose the pipeline and are worried that it will reduce flows to agricultural areas in the Yaqui floodplain downstream in Sonora.