Environment & Climate Change

National parks leader pledges more inclusion of Native Americans in land management

BY: - March 9, 2022

The federal government will make greater efforts to include Native American tribes in decisions involving federal lands, National Park Service Director Charles F. Sams III told a House panel Tuesday. In his first appearance before the U.S. House Natural Resources Committee since he was confirmed as parks director in November, Sams said President Joe Biden’s […]

Biden declares U.S. ban on Russian oil, warns of gasoline price spikes

BY: and - March 8, 2022

WASHINGTON — The United States will no longer import Russian energy in an attempt to further cripple that nation’s economy as it wages war against Ukraine.  President Joe Biden announced the newest sanctions Tuesday from the White House, saying that a ban on Russian oil and gas would target “the main artery of Russia’s economy.” […]

Federal program — with no money attached — created to tackle uranium mine cleanup

BY: - March 8, 2022

The Department of Interior was ordered just months ago to create a program to address the longstanding problem of abandoned hardrock mines across the country, including uranium mines abandoned in New Mexico.  The new program comes from an amendment to the bipartisan infrastructure package, which President Joe Biden signed Nov. 15 of last year.  Sponsored […]

Congress members from NM, Texas work to ban interim nuclear fuel storage funding

BY: - March 7, 2022

A bipartisan group of members of Congress introduced a bill that would prevent federal money from going toward private interim nuclear waste storage facilities, an effort to prevent such sites from being built in Southeastern New Mexico and Western Texas.  Elected officials and environmental groups fear so-called “interim” sites will become permanent nuclear storage sites. […]

Santolina proposals get a thumbs down from BernCo planning commission

BY: - March 3, 2022

Developers of the Santolina subdivision failed to find support for their new plans at the Bernalillo County Planning Commission meeting Wednesday. The subdivision is designed to bring in 90,000 residents to Albuquerque’s far west mesa in the coming decades, as water shortages resulting from climate change dominate conversations about growth and population in the region. […]

NM governor signs bill for uranium mine cleanup 

BY: - March 2, 2022

There are an estimated 1,100 uranium mines and mills in New Mexico, 500 of which are on or near the Navajo Nation.

Straddling the divide between environmental action and energy revenue

BY: , , and - February 28, 2022

COUNSELOR, New Mexico — Bright pink flags mark a swath of newly cleared land, rubber water hoses snake along the roadside and pump jacks dot the horizon, all signs of the state’s growth as an oil and gas hub. But even as production expands across New Mexico, the state is trying to shrink its global […]

Replacements for removing derogatory names on federal lands published

BY: - February 25, 2022

The Department of the Interior’s Derogatory Geographic Names Task Force published a list of replacement names for the geographic features with the name “sq***,” which was officially declared a derogatory term last year by Secretary of Interior Deb Haaland. “Words matter, particularly in our work to make our nation’s public lands and waters accessible and […]

New Mexico to join western coalition in bid for federal hydrogen hub

BY: - February 24, 2022

Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham announced Thursday morning that New Mexico would join three other states in a bid to lure billions of dollars toward the creation of a federal hydrogen hub in the region. The federal infrastructure package includes $8 billion toward the creation of at least four hydrogen production centers around the country. The […]

Bill banning nuclear waste storage dies in Legislature. Activist says fight goes on

BY: - February 24, 2022

A bill that would have made it illegal to store spent nuclear fuel in New Mexico died in the Legislature this year, but a prominent activist says he’s still confident a proposed facility will never operate here The company Holtec International submitted an application to the Nuclear Regulatory Commission in March 2017 to open a […]

Little earthquakes point state regulators to oil company’s violations

BY: - February 23, 2022

A major oil company pulling crude from quaking earth in southeastern New Mexico was hit with fines and violation notices Monday. XTO Permian Operating LLC faces more than $2 million in civil penalties for what the state says are operational and reporting violations at four Class II injection wells.  A dramatic increase in seismic activity […]

A problem of ‘infinite scope and cost’

BY: - February 22, 2022

A bill invigorating New Mexico government to coordinate the cleanup of abandoned uranium mines passed both chambers of the Legislature this session, but the state will confront a decades-old problem that experts say has a potentially “infinite” scope and cost.  Sen. Jeff Steinborn (D-Las Cruces) sponsored the “Uranium Mine Cleanup” bill, one that will mobilize […]