Environment & Climate Change

Schumer vows U.S. Senate action on voting rights and social policy, as Manchin rift deepens

BY: - December 21, 2021

U.S. Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer said Monday he plans to force votes on voting rights, a sweeping social policy bill and a change to Senate rules early next year — even as members of his caucus have made clear in recent days Democrats lack the support to pass those proposals. In a letter to […]

COMMENTARY

A better way to share water from the shrinking Colorado River

BY: - December 14, 2021

The Colorado River is a vital lifeline for the arid U.S. Southwest. It supplies water to seven states, Mexico, 29 reservations and millions of acres of irrigated farmland. The river and its tributaries support 16 million jobs and provide drinking water to Denver, Salt Lake City, Albuquerque, Las Vegas, Los Angeles, San Diego, Phoenix and Tucson […]

After public pressure, ABQ Council confirms Pfeiffer to environmental board

BY: - December 13, 2021

Albuquerque councilors confirmed the appointment of the first Native person ever to serve on the city government’s Environmental Planning Commission, according to city sources. She’ll also be the only woman on the board.  But it was only after public pressure and a letter-writing campaign from numerous organizations in support of the candidate, who said she […]

Haaland promises governors federal help for fires, drought

BY: - December 10, 2021

U.S. Interior Secretary Deb Haaland pledged federal resources and cooperation with governors from 19 Western states to tackle wildfire resilience, drought management, oil and gas cleanup efforts and other issues made more difficult by climate change.  Speaking at the Western Governors Association meeting outside San Diego on Thursday, Haaland touted funding for Interior priorities in […]

Billions targeted to state wildlife conservation under bipartisan push in Congress

BY: - December 8, 2021

A bipartisan pair of senators on Wednesday called for Congress to approve billions in new funding for states to manage wildlife recovery work. At a hearing of the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee, Sens. Martin Heinrich, (D-N.M.), and Roy Blunt, (R-Mo.), said a bill they introduced this year would help protect 1,600 threatened species, […]

Biden’s oil and gas policy falls short on climate goals, House Democrats say

BY: - December 3, 2021

WASHINGTON — Democrats on the U.S. House Natural Resources Committee on Thursday encouraged President Joe Biden to take stronger action to limit oil and gas production, while Republicans said reducing domestic production would only increase global emissions from overseas suppliers.  In a hearing less than a week after the U.S. Interior Department released a report […]

After sharp increase in earthquakes, NM announces new requirements for oil and gas drillers

BY: - December 2, 2021

A New Mexico agency overseeing oil extraction in the southern part of the state has issued a new protocol to deal with earthquakes caused by oil and gas production. State data showed an increase in the number of earthquakes in the Permian Basin, according to a report by Capital and Main. The number of magnitude […]

COMMENTARY

What is the Strategic Petroleum Reserve?

BY: - December 1, 2021

President Joe Biden ordered a release of oil from its Strategic Petroleum Reserve on Nov. 23, 2021, as a part of a coordinated effort with five other countries to tamp down rising fuel prices. The U.S. plans to tap 50 million barrels of crude oil in the coming months, while the other nations – the U.K., India, Japan, […]

Interior Department calls for oil and gas leasing updates, but not ending production

BY: - November 30, 2021

The U.S. Interior Department recommended increased fees for oil and gas exploration on federal lands as part of a long-awaited report released Friday that environmental groups said didn’t go far enough in limiting fossil fuels and Republicans derided as an attack on domestic producers. The report, ordered by President Joe Biden during his first week […]

New Mexico’s draft plan for hydrogen a non-starter for environmentalists

BY: - November 29, 2021

In mid-November, after months of hinting about an upcoming bill, Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham’s administration sent a draft Hydrogen Hub Act out to stakeholders for their input. First reactions are not positive.   “Let’s be crystal clear,” says Erik Schlenker-Goodrich, executive director of the Western Environmental Law Center, “this bill isn’t a climate or clean energy bill. […]

How paid leave, a tax cut for the rich and more could get axed from Biden’s social policy bill

BY: and - November 29, 2021

WASHINGTON — Congressional Democrats cheered on the floor of the U.S. House after approving President Joe Biden’s massive social spending and climate bill.  But a major struggle lies ahead in the coming month in the U.S. Senate, where Democrats cannot lose any votes within their party if they are to send the so-called Build Back Better […]

Biden opens oil reserve to relieve high gas prices — but it won’t be immediate

BY: - November 25, 2021

As gasoline prices spiral ahead of the big holiday travel season, President Joe Biden authorized the release of a record 50 million barrels of oil from the Strategic Petroleum Reserve Tuesday—complicating his administration’s goal to transition to cleaner energy sources.    In prepared remarks, Biden said he coordinated the release from the reserve, a complex of […]