Press Release: State Supreme Court Will Hear Case For Intervention

June 2011

Contact: Mariel Nanasi 505-469-4060

 

State Supreme Court Will Hear Case For Intervention
New Energy Economy Seeks Right to Defend Carbon Reduction Law

Santa Fe – The New Mexico State Supreme Court has agreed to hear a case in which nonprofit New Energy Economy is seeking to intervene in an appeal filed by PNM against the Environment Improvement Board (EIB). In its appeal, PNM, the state’s largest source of carbon pollution, is asking the Court of Appeals to invalidate New Mexico’s carbon pollution reduction law. The EIB adopted the law in December of 2010.

“We are pleased that the Supreme Court has agreed to hear this case,” said Mariel Nanasi, Executive Director of New Energy Economy. “Since PNM is opposed to the carbon reduction law and Governor Martinez’s EIB is as well, it’s only fair that we be given an opportunity to defend the carbon pollution reduction rule.” In January of this year, the State Supreme Court, ruling in favor of a New Energy Economy lawsuit, ruled that the Martinez administration acted unconstitutionally when it tried to prevent the publishing of the then carbon pollution reduction rule as codified state law. The Martinez Administration has had a dismal record before the NM Supreme Court.

New Energy Economy is represented by attorney Bruce Frederick of the New Mexico Environmental Law Center. “If our client is barred from the appeal process then no one will defend the carbon pollution reduction rule on appeal.” Frederick points out that both PNM and the new members of the EIB, all appointed by Governor Martinez, oppose the rule, he says. “So neither party in the appeal has any interest in defending the rule. We will defend the rule because we provided the hundreds of hours of scientific and economic expert testimony” that persuaded the EIB to adopt the rule. “It would be a great injustice if our client was now barred from explaining this testimony to the court on appeal.”

New Energy Economy led a two-year public process that led to the creation of New Mexico’s landmark carbon reduction law. The rule requires facilities that emit more than 25,000 metric tons of carbon pollution per year to reduce these emissions by 3 percent per year from 2010 levels starting in 2013. The law has been lauded by national experts for its capacity to improve New Mexico’s energy security by means of predictability, market-based mechanisms and extensive compliance flexibility. An economic analysis released in February indicated the carbon pollution reduction law has the potential to add 17,500 family-supporting jobs in New Mexico’s electric sector and add more than $2 billion in total added economic value to New Mexico’s families and businesses.

About New Energy Economy

New Energy Economy is a registered 501(c) (3) nonprofit organization established in 2004 to create economic opportunity in New Mexico with less carbon pollution and more clean energy. New Energy Economy works in partnership with diverse allies to encourage job growth, investment and innovation in a more efficient, sustainable and equitable energy sector. New Energy Economy grounds its work in the research and findings of the world’s leading scientific and technological authorities. Learn more at www.newenergyeconomy.org

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