Mountainair community opposes CO2 pipeline in New Mexico

Abo Ruins are among the site threatened by the pipeline

By Teresa Seamster, Northern New Mexico Group vice chair. 06/30/14
The sweeping open spaces of Abo and Tenabo west of Mountainair are as ancient and majestic as any in the state. It is hard to imagine this area ever becoming industrial or polluted.
Nonetheless, the proposed 213-mile CO2 Lobos pipeline through New Mexico is about to cut through landscapes like this, dismantling cultural areas and destroying underground vegas forever, unless people act.
The people of Mountainair have been taking action.

Report shows dangers of Four Corners coal ash; plant wants 25 more years

Chaco Wash Four Corners Morgan Lake

By Norma McCallan, Chapter vice chair 06.30.14
The Sierra Club released reports in May on some of the nation’s most dangerous coal-ash sites, including the coal-ash storage at Four Corners Power Plant near Fruitland, N.M.

Organ Mountains-Desert Peaks designated a national monument

Organ Mountains by Mike Groves

By Dustin Chavez-Davis, Our Wild America associate organizing representative 06.30.14

On May 21, President Barack Obama signed a proclamation that designated New Mexico’s Organ Mountains-Desert Peaks as our country’s newest national monument.

PNM Plans to Waste Tens of Billions of Gallons of Water by Burning Fossil Fuels

For Immediate Release: June 25, 2014
Contact: David Robertson, Sierra Club – Rio Grande Chapter, 505-803-6242

Albuquerque, NM --- The Public Service Company of New Mexico (PNM) is squandering a chance to save tens of billions of gallons of water through the year 2033 by investing in large-scale, cost-effective renewable energy. PNM is instead planning to use mostly nuclear, coal, and natural gas, all highly water intensive, to replace the power from two soon to be shuttered stacks at the San Juan Generating Stations in northwestern New Mexico. The Rio Grande Chapter of the Sierra Club and 350 New Mexico issued its “PNM Water You Thinking Report” today detailing PNM's plan to unnecessarily consume large amounts of water in power production, which the utility described in their December filing to the Public Regulation Commission (PRC).

Tell Santa Fe County Commission: No strip mining on La Bajada!

By Teresa Seamster 06.12.14

Fifty acres of La Bajada Mesa -- a landmark recognized by the New Mexico Heritage Preservation Alliance as one of New Mexico's Most Endangered Places -- are now under threat of strip mining.

Reducing La Bajada Mesa to crushed basalt for road base would be a travesty. The applicant, Rockology LLC, would also use thousands of gallons of potable water daily just to reduce dust at the site.

The Santa Fe County Commission heard this issue on June 11 and delayed a decision, though 600 people showed up in opposition to the mines.

Sierra Club Rio Grande Chapter applauds plan to curb carbon pollution

Coal - San Juan

Contact: Camilla Feibelman, 505.715.8388

Albuquerque, NM -- Today, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency issued a proposal for the first-ever national protections from dangerous carbon pollution from existing power plants. Carbon pollution causes climate disruption and is already costing American communities billions of dollars from flooding, super-storms, wildfires, and extreme heat.

PRC approves damaging changes to renewables rule

Solar - City of Santa Fe - 1 MW © DVW

For Immediate Release:
April 16, 2014

Rio Grande Chapter statement on PRC decision to make damaging change to cost calculations in renewables rule

SANTA FE, NM - The Public Regulation Commission on Wednesday voted to make a damaging change to the rule that enforces New Mexico’s renewable-energy law.

Counsel Rick Blumenfeld deceptively told the commission that his recommendation addressed concerns of commenters and failed to tell the commission that most commenters had reached a consensus to keep the current rule intact.

New staffers for New Mexico

Robert Tohe

By Roger Singer, Senior Regional Organizing Manager 03/24/14
I would like to introduce you to our two newest Sierra Club national staff based in New Mexico, Dustin Chavez-Davis and Robert Tohe.
As key staff members of the Club’s national Our Wild America campaign, they both have already been hard at work to better protect the remaining wildlands of New Mexico, and to protect our state’s air and water quality from dirty fuels extraction on our public lands.
Both Robert and Dustin hail originally from New Mexico.

Budget fights stall legislative progress

Sen. Peter Wirth

By Dan Lorimier, Chapter Conservation coordinator 03/24/14
New Mexico in February finished its “short” 30-day session of the Legislature, and as usual, budget battles between the executive branch and the legislative branch bogged down the process.
By the time resolution was reached on the budget, so many bills were being held in the House Appropriations and Finance Committee and the Senate Finance Committee, waiting for a settled and final budget, that there was little time to consider this backlog before the session ended Feb. 20.

Science panel rejects Fish and Wildlife wolf plan

Wolf1 © 2006 Larry Allen

By Mary Katherine Ray, Chapter Wildlife chair 03/28/14

The saga and shame of the proposal to delist wolves from endangered-species protection wears on.
Wolves have already been delisted by an act of Congress in the three northern Rockies states of Wyoming, Montana and Idaho and the three Great Lakes states of Michigan, Minnesota and Wisconsin.
Last year, the Fish and Wildlife Service proposed to remove wolves from the Endangered Species list nationwide (excluding Mexican wolves) based on a reclassification of the species Canis lupus.

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