The energy crossroads at which we stand is not just about fossil fuels or renewables, but about who controls the process, who owns the resources, who benefits, and who bears the costs. We are seeing the debate from Hawaii, to Puerto Rico, to Maine, to California. From coast to coast, from local battles across the country, to the negotiations over billions in federal investments in energy upgrades and infrastructure at the national level - our energy democracy movement is gaining ground in bringing forward an alternative vision for energy transition - and winning investments in community-driven and owned renewable energy. As the imminent transition to renewables becomes undeniable we have the opportunity to engage our communities, our lawmakers, and regulators in the question of HOW this transition is going to take place. Our work to transition provides the opportunity to radically redesign our state’s economy and our “democracy”– from an energy colony based on extraction and undue corporate influence to a regenerative economy, governed by and for the people – with justice and equity at the center. This is our moment!
Defending against another colonial energy enterprise - Yes, we did defeat Avangrid's plan to establish a "beachhead" in New Mexico by merging with PNM and using their monopoly utility status to seize control of New Mexico's sun and wind energy for the profit of their Spanish parent company Iberdrola, but our victory is on appeal and we expect that as soon as the Governor's hand-picked PRC is installed PNM/Avangrid will seek to withdraw their Supreme Court appeal and move for merger approval by the new PRC. We will be there to stand up for New Mexicans!
Defending against the extension of coal power at Four Corners - Yes, we did defeat PNM's plan to sell its shares in the Four Corners Coal Plant (FCPP) to Navajo Transitional Energy Corporation, the company supplying coal to FCCP, an illegal sale that would extend the life of the plant. This included a regulatory rejection of PNM’s bailout of $300 million. We are defending our victory at the NM Supreme Court because coal is still the most dangerous and dirty energy source on the planet.
Representing the people of New Mexico in the upcoming PNM rate case - the rate case was filed last week. Issues in the case will define energy prices and significantly impact the timing of the renewable energy transition in New Mexico for at least the next decade. Even as I write this we are studying the case and preparing to defend the people.
Opposing the economic exploitation and greed of the monopoly utility model - Yes, we defeated PNM’s proposal to “decouple” utility profits from sales, an outrageous proposal that would have allowed the company to collect revenues for “whatever the reason,” even if the weather reduced demand or people switched to rooftop solar. Yes, we also defeated PNM’s brazen decision to continue to charge ratepayers for San Juan Generating Station plant operations even after its closure - an annual $94M taking from customers, and yes, we successfully opposed efforts by all three investor owned utilities in NM to delay implementation of Community Solar. All these victories are now on appeal at the NM Supreme Court. We will continue to protect ratepayers from utility greed.
Opposing False Climate Solutions - In 2022 we joined a coalition of grassroots groups to defeat multiple bills promoting false climate solutions like hydrogen, carbon credit markets and carbon capture and storage projects that serve only to delay the transition to 100% renewable energy. In 2023 we expect to be playing whack-a-mole with false climate solution bills at the legislature once again!
Exposing the Vision of What's Possible - New Energy Economy's theory of change includes fighting the violence of the extractive economy and simultaneously exposing the alternative vision - 100% renewable wind and solar energy and energy democracy that conveys the benefits, profits and decisions about energy to the people instead of monopoly utilities. We are fighting for Local Choice Energy legislation brought by Public Power NM and continuing to invest in our local communities through Sol for ALL solarization projects at Major Market in Zuni Pueblo, Reunity Resources in Santa Fe and Keres Children's Learning Center at Cochiti Pueblo.