climate & environment

Now is the time to open new doors for all to a healthy environment and a stable climate that reflects New Mexico’s values.


photo of Laura Paskus. New Mexico journalistphoto of William deBuys. New Mexico writerphoto of Rep. Angelica Rubio. New Mexico legislatorphoto of Miguel Escoto. Earthworks Field Associate


Pollution from oil and natural gas and the resulting climate change are standing in the way of a resilient climate and healthy environment for many New Mexicans. Here are ways New Mexico is and should continue to reduce these impacts:

Update the 1935 NM Oil & Gas Act

The 1935 NM Oil & Gas Act, passed over 85 years ago, focuses solely on resource development. It’s long past time the act reflected today’s realities and the other vital public interests at stake. The Oil & Gas Justice & Reform Act, to be considered in the 2023 legislative session, expands authority under the act to protect the environment, public health, and communities that experience the worst impacts of climate change and oil and gas pollution. The bill also expands membership on the Oil Conservation Commission to reflect all public interests impacted by oil and gas production. Learn more on the Western Environmental Law Center’s website.

Interagency climate change task force

In January 2019, Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham issued Executive Order 2019-003 on Climate Change and Waste Prevention, which created the state Interagency Climate Change Task Force and included directives for agencies to incorporate climate mitigation and adaptation practices into their policies and operations.


The Status of Tribes and Climate Change Report from the Institute for Tribal Environmental Professionals discusses the impacts and solutions for a variety of issue areas, such as ecosystems and biodiversity, air, water, health and wellbeing, and economic development, and offers recommendations and resources for tribes.


The New Mexico Interagency Climate Change Task Force reports annually on progress made to address climate change under Governor Lujan Grisham’s third executive order.


Colorado College annually polls registered voters in eight western states to explore bi-partisan opinions about conservation, public lands, energy, water, wildlife, wildfire, and other pressing challenges in the Mountain West.

New Mexico’s Energy Transition Act

New Mexico’s Energy Transition Act aims to double renewable energy use in the state by 2025, and requires 50% renewable energy by 2030 and 100 percent carbon-free electricity generation by 2045. To achieve these targets, attention to the workforce will be crucial. Read more in the New Mexico Clean Energy Workforce Development Study

Oil and Gas Air Pollution Rules

In 2021 and 2022, New Mexico passed nation-leading rules to reduce methane and other air pollution from oil and gas development.

wildlife corridors act

Wildlife plays a critical role in social and spiritual life for many cultures in New Mexico and preserves the integrity of the ecosystems that provide people with food, water, and protection from natural disasters. Gov. Lujan Grisham signed the Wildlife Corridors Act in the summer of 2019 which directed two state agencies to identify areas around the state where wildlife crossing highways poses a risk to motorists.  

FULLY fund state agencies

In the last decade, budgets for state agencies charged with protecting New Mexicans’ health and wellbeing have been cut 15-30%, threatening their ability to do their job.

eradicate subsidies for oil and gas

Subsidies to fossil fuels support an industry that drives negative public health impacts, local environmental pollution from fossil fuel extraction and infrastructure, and climate change impacts and costs. Learn more in Oil Change International’s report.