Oil and gas operations in New Mexico emit 337,500 tons of smog-forming volatile organic compounds and more than 1.1 million metric tons of methane pollution, a powerful greenhouse gas.
Thankfully, the New Mexico Environment Department has proposed a strong oil and gas air pollution rule to protect our air and climate and the health of New Mexico’s families.
Gov. Lujan Grisham and Secretary Jim Kenney deserve credit for the hard work that went into responding to the concerns of people across the state and developing a smart, commonsense proposal.
While the Environment Department has significantly strengthened their draft proposal, a few targeted improvements are critical to protecting communities and meeting Gov. Lujan Grisham’s goal of nation-leading rules to cut methane and air pollution.
The Environmental Improvement Board will hold a hearing on the proposed rule beginning Monday, September 20, 2021. Make your voice heard below by adding your name to the petition or signing up to give public comment at the hearing!
Dear Members of the Environmental Improvement Board,
I am writing today to encourage the EIB to vote to support and strengthen the New Mexico Environment Department’s draft rule to address Ozone Precursor Pollutants from oil and gas operations. This rule is critical for protecting both our health and climate by reducing smog-forming volatile organic compounds as well as methane – a powerful greenhouse gas responsible for 25 percent of the climate change we are experiencing today.
While the Environment Department has put forward a strong proposal, more work needs to be done to protect communities and address major pollution sources to meet Gov. Lujan Grisham’s goal of nation-leading rules to cut pollution.
Here are three key improvements the Environment Department should adopt to protect communities and address major sources of pollution:
– Protect those living closest to development by requiring more frequent inspections to find and fix leaks.
– Ensure strong requirements for operators to control pollution during the completion of an oil or gas well or when they redevelop an existing well.
– Strengthen requirements to cut pollution from pneumatic controllers that are used in oil and gas production. The devices are the second largest source of oil and gas methane emissions in New Mexico. NMED should require companies to inspect pneumatics for leaks and accelerate the timeline to retrofit equipment with zero-bleed or zero-emission pneumatic controllers.
Please adopt a strong final rule that protects communities and addresses major sources of air and climate pollution.
Feel free to copy the above template and use it or customize it to reach out to the Environmental Improvement Board today to help us get the message out!