Health

Now is the time to open new doors to health for all New Mexicans now and in the future.

Voices

photo of Kent Salazar New Mexico Conservationist Sister Joan Brown. NM Interfaith Power and LightSug McNall. NM clean air advocate

Resources

There remains a lack of data to identify inequitable climate-related health impacts. Here are some of the available resources:

Interactive Maps

See how climate change is impacting your health via interactive maps created by the Natural Resources Defense Council.

oil in our backyards

Right now, more than 144,000 New Mexicans - including nearly 39,000 children - live within a half-mile threat radius of oil and gas production facilities, putting them at an elevated risk of serious health impacts including cancer, respiratory illness, fetal defects, blood disorders, and neurological problems.

Harms of Fracking

Compendium of Scientific, Medical, and Media Findings Demonstrating Risks and Harms of Fracking (Unconventional Gas and Oil Extraction) - A collection of nearly 2,000 abstracts of medical, scientific and investigative reports about the consequences of oil and gas drilling, fracking, and associated infrastructure presents evidence that these activities are dangerous to public health, the environment, and the climate cycle and a grave environmental justice issue, with communities of color, Indigenous people, and impoverished communities bearing disproportionate harm.

To address the lack of data and identify equitable solutions to health impacts from oil and gas pollution and climate change, New Mexico should:

Reinstate the Environmental Justice Task Force

Take a whole-of-government approach to environmental justice under the state’s Environmental Justice Executive Order, including reinstating the Environmental Justice Task Force along with clear accountability measures.

Identify health Impacts

Invest in Health Impact Assessment research to identify the specific health impacts experienced by New Mexicans as a result of energy development.

Cumulative Impacts in Permitting

Create policies that take into account cumulative impacts in permitting and review processes. Current environmental policy, which is focused narrowly on pollutants and their sources, should be broadened to take into account the cumulative impact of exposures and vulnerabilities encountered by people who live in neighborhoods consisting largely of racial or ethnic minorities or people of low socioeconomic status. 

NM CLEAN CARS CLEAN AIR

Transportation is the second-largest contributor to greenhouse gas emissions harming New Mexico’s air and environment. Clean cars standards will open new doors to cleaner air, improved public health, and action against climate change.

EDUCATIONAL PRESENTATIONS

  • This recent video presentation from Nate Matthews-Trigg, a health care emergency manager and affiliate instructor on climate change and health, discusses the data on climate impacts and projections in New Mexico, the effect of climate change on public health and patient care, and potential adaptation and resilience strategies.
  • This presentation series from UNM Health Sciences’ Project ECHO focuses on the intersection between Climate Change and Human Health (under the Resources section), featuring multiple nationwide speakers on various related topics.