Can you imagine life without clean water?

Like many New Mexicans, we know that groundwater is the most precious resource in our arid state – a resource that we cannot afford to squander or pollute. But unfortunately, that is exactly what corporate and government interests in our state are doing.

And what’s even worse – this behavior is encouraged and advanced by both our State and Federal Administrations, which fail to effectively prevent pollution and fail to protect our dwindling groundwater supplies from speculative use.

This reckless disregard for our state’s groundwater, coupled with the impact of global warming, is rapidly moving us toward a crisis situation! 

Here at the Law Center, we are especially concerned because 80-90% of New Mexicans rely on groundwater for their drinking water. And once groundwater is polluted, it is extremely difficult and costly to clean up! Accordingly, over 70% of the casework we do is focused on protecting the quantity and quality of our state’s groundwater.

Recognizing how critical our services are to the lives of New Mexico residents, supporters like you have stepped up to provide the financial resources needed for us to hire an additional attorney so that we can more strategically manage our ever-growing load of water-related cases.

But we still need your help to sustain the new attorney position, to hire a (long-overdue) paralegal position, and to cover additional office expenses to get these new staff set up and ready to go.

The easiest way to provide sustainable support for this critical work is to join our recurring giving circle, CLUB DOUG.*

We can’t afford to wait! New Mexico is at a precedent-setting crossroads for water policy; decisions made today will determine whether or not private corporations are given control over vast swaths of our state’s public waters. If that happens, it will lead to increasing water poverty in our cities, and irreparable damage to our state’s rural communities and local agriculture.

What would your life look like without adequate, clean water?

With your support, the Law Center is working to make sure that you never have to answer this daunting question.


Join the Law Center’s CLUB DOUG* by making a recurring monthly donation of $10 or more today!  When you join CLUB DOUG* you not only receive a free “Doug Mug,” but you become a part of a dedicated community of supporters reaching out each month to help ensure that we can continue fighting to protect our state’s water quantity and quality for the long term.Doug Mug

*As you can see Doug has no control over the wildly creative ways in which his name is used around here.  He laments that being Executive Director means that he is directed by the Staff – this is a prime example!

Carol Pittman, Datil resident   and Law Center client

“To say that the New Mexico Environmental Law Center is an asset to the state is an understatement.  The center represents those who have no other advocate, leveling the playing field so that ordinary citizens have a chance to prevail against odds that are stacked against them.  Here in the Augustin Plains, for example, we face an international corporation with deep pockets that is intent on mining water from an aquifer of fossil water that sustains the residents and the economy of Catron County…

The project of the Augustin Plains Ranch LLC would, if approved, pump 54,000 acre-feet of water – 17 billion gallons – per year from the aquifer, put that water in a pipeline and ship it to the Albuquerque area…  This amount of pumping from the aquifer would deplete it in a finite amount of time, and the people here in Catron County would be left literally ‘high and dry’… The New Mexico Environmental Law Center stands on the front line with us, helping to safeguard our future.

Should the project be approved, that approval would set the stage for such projects across the state, and rural communities would find themselves fighting similar battles.  It is of the utmost importance to keep the New Mexico Environmental Law Center alive and vibrant, giving our communities a fighting chance to preserve our water which will by extension preserve our culture, our way of life, our economy, and the environment, which, indeed, makes all life possible.”

Quotes taken from Carol’s letter to the editor
of the Albuquerque Journal
published November 17, 2017.