skip to main content

Sunday, June 4, 2023

play newscast audioPlay

A Wisconsin group criticizes two of its members of Congress, a new report says the Phoenix area cannot meet its groundwater demands, and Nevada's sporting community sends its priorities to the governor.

play newscast audioPlay

The Senate aims to get the debt limit spending bill to President Biden's desk quickly, Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis makes a campaign stop in Iowa, and a new survey finds most straight adults support LGBTQ+ rights.

play newscast audioPlay

Oregon may expand food stamp eligibility to some undocumented households, rural areas have a new method of accessing money for roads and bridges, and Tennessee's new online tool helps keep track of cemetery locations.

NM Grandmother Recognized for One-Woman Fight for Clean Air

play audio
Play

Wednesday, August 8, 2018   

AZTEC, N.M. – A New Mexico woman who has spent her life in the San Juan Basin near hundreds of oil and gas wells says she'll continue her fight for a cleaner environment despite her own health issues.

Shirley McNall is profiled in a report by the group Moms Clean Air Force about the consequences of living near oil and gas drilling. In the town of Aztec, McNall takes journalists and other visitors on what she calls a "Toxic Tour of Hell" in northwest New Mexico, which she said includes residential neighborhoods dotted with leaky gas tanks, oil on the ground, fumes venting into the air and nonstop compressor noise.

McNall said it's important to demonstrate to others what many people live with, "to show 'em how we live, all over the United States now, with these dangerous little industrial sites right next to our homes and our schools and our churches. Aztec has over 110 gas wells in our little town."

Under the Trump administration, oil and gas is experiencing major growth and contributing to New Mexico's economy, but health and environmental groups have said the boom also means increased rates of asthma, cancer and other health ailments related to air pollution.

The oil and gas industry is allowed to drill as close to a house as 100 feet in San Juan County, and McNall said she lives about a half-mile from eight gas wells.

"Because they just come in, and if they want to drill by your house, they drill," she said. "You don't have any control over whether or not they can drill."

McNall said she realizes that as one of the poorest states in the nation, the boom-and-bust energy industry benefits New Mexico's economy when times are good. However, she also said she worries about the thousands of children who attend school or day care in close proximity to oil and gas infrastructure.

"I always make a point of saying, 'I realize we need the energy and we need the jobs. But our health and our safety shouldn't be at risk'," she said.

The Moms Clean Air Force report profiled six other women, in states from California to Pennsylvania, who are "face to face" with oil and gas pollution in their daily lives.

More information is online at momscleanairforce.org.


get more stories like this via email

Almost all departments in Connecticut schools saw shortages in 2022, following a long-standing national trend. A 2022 American Federation of Teachers report found before the COVID-19 pandemic, almost 300,000 teachers were leaving the profession each year. (Adobe Stock)

Social Issues

play sound

As the school year ends, Connecticut's teacher shortage seems to have only worsened. In March, school districts across the state reported having 2,60…


Social Issues

play sound

A Muslim rights group is taking the Kent County Sheriff's Office to court for forcing a Michigan woman to remove her hijab for a booking photo…

Social Issues

play sound

A rally was held in Salem Thursday to urge passage of a bill to provide food assistance to Oregonians regardless of their immigration status…


Pennsylvanians must register to vote by Oct. 23 to be eligible to vote in the general election on Nov. 7. (Vesperstock/AdobeStock)

Social Issues

play sound

The Keystone State's general election is less than six months away and a nonpartisan, grassroots organization is already getting the word out to …

Social Issues

play sound

This week's debt ceiling deal saw federal policymakers compromise on budget-related matters, but a new awareness campaign from a Wisconsin grassroots …

Sarah Van Loon, Midwest regional director for the American Jewish Committee, said it is incumbent upon all of us to teach children about the Holocaust. (Adobe stock)

Social Issues

play sound

Hoosiers could play a pivotal role in pushing back against a surge of hate and violence against Jews in America. Nearly two-thirds of all …

Environment

play sound

The Nevada hunting and fishing community is sharing its top 10 conservation priorities for 2023 with Gov. Joe Lombardo's office, as they seek to …

Social Issues

play sound

Some Illinois real estate corporations are getting large paydays by charging homeowners assessments for "common expenses," and the owners allege they …

 

Phone: 303.448.9105 Toll Free: 888.891.9416 Fax: 208.247.1830 Your trusted member- and audience-supported news source since 1996 Copyright 2021