NMELC in the News

Nuclear Regulatory Commission slows decision about Church Rock uranium cleanup

by Marjorie Childress

New Mexico In Depth

June 16, 2022

The Nuclear Regulatory Commission appears to have slowed its timeline for deciding whether to let another federal agency house uranium-contaminated debris on a mill site it regulates near Church Rock.  Local Navajo people and Navajo Nation officials object to the plan, saying the proposal doesn’t move debris far enough away from the community. …

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Group claims discrimination over hearing asphalt plants

by Claudia L. Silva

Santa Fe New Mexican

May 7, 2022

Residents of neighborhoods in southwestern Santa Fe who have fought a proposed asphalt plant consolidation, arguing its effects would amount to environmental racism, also allege they faced discrimination during a public hearing before the New Mexico Environment Department….

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It’s a Win for Barclays Bank in the Santolina Saga

Santa Fe-Size Development Could Put a Huge Straw into New Mexico’s Scarce Water

by Gwynne Ann Unruh

The Paper.

May 6, 2022

Hang in there, folks, as the “Santolina Saga” continues. The saga is a win one, loose one, a piecemeal maze of plans, interim use, solar panels, an old tire dump and nearly a decade of court battles. There are Master Plans, Interim Use and Development Agreements ad nauseam. Deciphering the bottom line for the development is like a puzzle the mind can’t quite grasp. …

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State adopts rule to require more electric cars

by Scott Wyland

Santa Fe New Mexican

May 6, 2022

New Mexicans will see thousands more electric vehicles available to buy in 2025 when a rule approved by two environmental boards takes effect. 

Dubbed the clean-car rule, it will require that electric vehicles and plug-in hybrids make up at least 7 percent of automakers’ new sales within New Mexico — adding up to an estimated 3,800 vehicles. …

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Thumbs Up for the Clean Car Rule

New Mexico Clean Cars, Clean Air Coalition Celebrates the Step Away from Fossil Fuels

by Gwynne Ann Unruh

The Paper.

May 6, 2022

 It’s a win for the Land of Enchantment’s air, thanks to a coalition of over 35 organizations across the state who supported clean car rules. Over the past year, the New Mexico Clean Cars Clean Air Coalition, with the help of New Mexico Environmental Law Center (NMELC) hustled to make their voices heard. They got a thumbs up just after public hearings on May 4 and 5, as the New Mexico Environmental Improvement Board and the City of Albuquerque – Bernalillo County Air Quality Control Board voted to adopt The Clean Car Rule. …

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U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission Travels to Navajo Nation, Hears of Health and Environmental Impacts of Uranium Mining

By Darren Thompson

Native News Online
April 25, 2022

Last Friday, the United States Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) traveled to Church Rock on the Navajo Nation, by invitation from the Navajo Nation and Redwater Pond Road Community members to discuss the impacts of uranium mining. NRC officials heard, for the first time in history, of the health and environmental impacts caused by uranium mining on the Navajo Nation. …

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Marginalized communities in Albuquerque, Santa Fe fight environmental racism

Santa Fe asphalt consolidation appeal results expected this summer

By Megan Gleason

UNM Daily Lobo
April 25, 2022

Areas with people of color, low-income residents and immigrants have historically been forced to endure environmental racism around the U.S., but New Mexico locals are fighting against it. Santa Fe’s Southside and Albuquerque’s South Valley continue in their efforts against unjust environmental decisions that disproportionately affect marginalized groups….

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Final decision on asphalt plant on Santa Fe’s South Side expected this summer

Three years of resistance to asphalt plant consolidation continues

By Austin Fisher
Source NM
April 21, 2022

A final decision on whether an asphalt company can expand its operations on Santa Fe’s South Side is expected this summer, after community groups appealed the project’s approval by state environmental regulators and hundreds of local residents petitioned Monday for the decision to be overturned….

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Farmers Push Back on Commissioner’s Water Comments

By Theresa Davis
Albuquerque Journal
April 20, 2022

About two dozen South Valley farmers protested at Civic Plaza on Wednesday in response to comments about agricultural water use made by Bernalillo County Commissioner Steven Michael Quezada who referred to farmers as being among the “biggest wasters of water.”

The commissioner walked back his comments during Wednesday’s Albuquerque Bernalillo County Water Utility Authority board meeting….

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Santolina Has Hit a Wall: Ignoring Staff Recommendations, CPC Tells Barclay Bank “No”

By Gwynne Ann Unruh
The Paper.

March 3, 2022

Community groups scored a big win today. For the past eight years, it’s been a back-and-forth battle with Santolina and community groups that oppose a development the size of Santa Fe on Albuquerque’s west mesa. In a highly unusual move, despite the County Staff’s urging to approve the Santolina amendments, the Bernalillo County Planning Commission (CPC) members voted 3-2 to deny amended Level A Master Plan and 3-1 to deny the Level B.II Master Plan for the proposed Santolina development project….

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Santolina Proposals Get a Thumbs Down from BernCo Planning Commission

By Shaun Griswold
Source NM

March 3, 2022

Developer talks trucking in water during construction, while South Valley farmers raise larger drought concerns

Developers of the Santolina subdivision failed to find support for their new plans at the Bernalillo County Planning Commission meeting Wednesday.

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Newest Request by Santolina Opposed

By Jessica Dyer
Albuquerque Journal

March 2, 2022

A proposal that would have paved the way for industrial uses inside Santolina hit rough waters Wednesday as the Bernalillo County Planning Commission opposed amendments to the site’s previously approved master plan….

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‘Green amendment’ to define environmental rights revived, advanced by New Mexico lawmakers

By Adrian Hedden
Carlsbad Current-Argus

February 8, 2022

New Mexicans’ right to a clean environment could be codified into state law as a resolution advanced from its first committee last week during the 2022 Legislative Session.

House Joint Resolution 2 sponsored by Rep. Joanne Ferrary (D-37) of Las Cruces was known as the “green amendment,” and would put language on the ballot in the next general election to alter the state’s constitution to define environmental rights….

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Green Amendment Moves Inches Closer to Passage

By The Paper. Staff
The Paper.

February 06, 2022

Constitutional Amendment will Secure the Right to Clean Air and Water and a Healthy Environment

On Saturday, the New Mexico House Energy, Environment and Natural Resources Committee voted to pass an updated version of HJR2, or the Green Amendment, through committee with a vote of 6 to 4. A revised version was considered by the committee after the original language failed to achieve the majority necessary at last week’s hearing to advance. The new language, according to sponsors, addresses concerns raised at last week’s hearing while still providing essential environmental rights and natural resources protection. The proposed New Mexico Green Amendment will be moving forward to the House Judiciary Committee next…

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