We were honored today to stand in solidarity with a coalition of Indigenous peoples, youth, frontline community members and environmental groups who today filed suit against the State of New Mexico, the state legislature, Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham and state agencies for violating their state constitutional duty to control the rapidly growing pollution from the oil and gas industry.
The lawsuit seeks compliance with the pollution control clause of the New Mexico Constitution under Article 20, Section 21. The New Mexico constitution mandates that the state prevent the despoilment of New Mexico’s air, water and other natural resources, and protect the state’s beautiful and healthful environment.
Oil production in New Mexico’s Permian Basin, one of the largest oilfields in the world, has increased nearly 10-fold since 2010, leading to a surge of devastating air, water and climate pollution.
Today’s lawsuit demands that the state comply with its constitutional duty to protect New Mexico’s environment, and that permitting of oil and gas wells be suspended in the meantime.
As Lead Attorney Gail Evans said at the announcement today, the State loves to point to oil and gas revenue as an excuse for the continued and unchecked drilling being permitted in New Mexico, but fails to consider the costs being paid in human health, in the destruction of our water and land resources, and in our future. Read more here.