Wednesday, August 4, 2021

Play

The youngest students along with faculty and staff will need to mask up in states like New Mexico; and President Biden calls for New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo to resign following a report on sexual harassment.

Play

Gov. Andrew Cuomo reacts to sexual harassment report; CDC places new limits on evictions until October; and a new study finds Democrats could lose control of US House in 2022 due to Republican gerrymandering.

NM Legislature Debates Tougher Rules, Penalities for Oil and Gas

Play

Wednesday, January 27, 2021   

SANTA FE, N.M. -- The New Mexico Senate has agreed to take up a bill that would increase penalties for produced water spills by the oil and gas industry.

"Produced water" is the flowback from fracking, known to contain dangerous chemicals and heavy metals toxic to humans.

Camilla Feibelman, director of the Sierra Club Rio Grande Chapter, said spills from produced water occur as frequently as three times a week, and subsequently poison New Mexico's land, water and air.

"Currently this waste really is out of control," Feibelman contended. "We're seeing thousands of ponds and corroded steel tanks that store this waste."

If passed, the legislation also would ban oil and gas companies from using fresh water in most cases, and require them to disclose the chemical composition of produced water from spills and any proposed use outside the oil field.

Most of the state is experiencing severe drought conditions and Feibelman stressed groundwater and surface water supplies from rivers, streams and reservoirs need to be protected.

Introduced by state Sen. Antoinette Sedillo Lopez, D-Albuquerque, Senate Bill 86 is scheduled to be heard tomorrow by the Senate Conservation Committee.

Feibelman stated currently, oil and gas companies are not required to take enough preventive measures to protect New Mexicans.

"Right now spills aren't illegal, you just have to report them and clean them up," Feibelman explained. "But we think disincentivizing the spills will help improve the care they're taking with equipment and with training and potential human error."

Oil and gas leaders in New Mexico, where the industry accounts for nearly one-third of the state's general fund revenues, have already raised concerns over President Joe Biden's executive order last week, which put a 60-day pause on new oil and gas leases on federal land.

The next sale of leases in New Mexico is scheduled after the two-month moratorium.

Disclosure: Sierra Club, Rio Grande Chapter contributes to our fund for reporting on Climate Change/Air Quality, Energy Policy, Public Lands/Wilderness, and Water. If you would like to help support news in the public interest, click here.


get more stories like this via email
Unilever, the parent company of Ben & Jerry's, could land on a list of more than 60 blacklisted companies prohibited from doing business with the State of Florida. (Stevepb/Pixabay)

Health and Wellness

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. - Gov. Ron DeSantis is promising to block any state money from going to the parent company of ice-cream maker Ben & Jerry's unless …


Social Issues

LAS VEGAS - Las Vegas is trying to make it easier for people experiencing homelessness to get to their appointments with social service agencies by in…

Environment

BILLINGS, Mont. - Montanans are being challenged this month to eat locally grown foods, every day of August. The Northern Plains Resource Council is …


Arkansas Advocates for Children and Families is also asking the Arkansas Legislature to reconsider Act 977, which bans state and local officials from mandating COVID-19 vaccinations. (Adobe Stock)

Social Issues

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. -- COVID-19 has given a whole new meaning to the term "Extraordinary Session," as state lawmakers are in Little Rock again today to …

Health and Wellness

SEATTLE - Speaking to folks who are hesitant about getting the COVID-19 vaccine has gained a new sense of urgency as the Delta variant pushes cases up…

Ayolanda Evans Mack of the group Protect Minnesota is at the helm of a new documentary about what it would take to rid a community of gun violence. (Black Light Media)

Social Issues

MINNEAPOLIS - Cities such as Minneapolis are getting attention over waves of gun violence in recent months. A statewide group hopes a new documentary …

Social Issues

FARGO, N.D. -- The people behind efforts to recall four Fargo School Board members have until August 25th to collect signatures. Ahead of that …

Social Issues

By Katie Fleischer for Ms. MagazineBroadcast version by Lily Böhlke for Tennessee News Service/Public News Service NASHVILLE, Tenn. -- After …

 

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