For Immediate Release, September 11, 2023
Gail Evans, Center for Biological Diversity, (505) 463-5293, email@example.com
New Scorecard Shows New Mexico Governor on Verge of Failing on Climate
SANTA FE, N.M.— New Mexico Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham has failed to use the power of her office to adopt policies and take actions that address the climate emergency, according to a scorecard released today by the Center for Biological Diversity and endorsed by numerous environmental and Indigenous organizations.
“Gov. Lujan Grisham can’t claim to be a climate leader while overseeing a massive expansion of oil and gas extraction in our state,” said Gail Evans, an attorney at the Center. “Under her leadership, New Mexico’s oil and gas production has become a top threat to the world’s climate. With the clock ticking, the governor must use her authority to protect New Mexicans and the planet from climate devastation.”
New Mexico’s oil production has more than doubled since Lujan Grisham took office in 2019. Over the past three years, New Mexico has led U.S. oil production growth and production has accelerated more than in any other state. The combustion of oil and gas extracted in New Mexico in 2022 generated 397 million metric tons of carbon dioxide emissions, which is more than the annual fossil fuel emissions of many countries, including Australia and the United Kingdom.
Because the state’s oil and gas production contributes substantially to the climate crisis, the governor’s decisions have globally significant consequences.
The scorecard outlines the top five actions needed for New Mexico to shift from being a major threat to the climate to becoming a climate leader. These are preventing new oil and gas extraction and phasing out existing fossil fuel production, prohibiting methane venting and flaring, establishing health buffer zones to protect people from oil and gas pollution, adopting and fully implementing the advanced clean cars rule, and leading a just transition toward a clean renewable future.
“New Mexicans deserve better than to have land and air destroyed by this dying industry,” said Alejandria Lyons with the New Mexico No False Solutions coalition. “We hope Gov. Lujan Grisham will use this scorecard as a roadmap to a cleaner, healthier New Mexico and world.”
The Center for Biological Diversity is a national, nonprofit conservation organization with more than 1.7 million members and online activists dedicated to the protection of endangered species and wild places.