The human is the first and most important part of the environment. We should do everything we can to make life easier for our citizens.
Each generation holds the land in trust and should use it but we must keep it clear and clean for future generations. Where possible, we should clean up messes left by previous generations.
New Mexico is a stunning, beautiful state. One of our great benefits is the vast expanse of undeveloped areas. We have much public land. That land should be accessible to all. As an avid hiker and backpacker, I value the majesty of our national forests, the solitude of our wilderness and the limitless horizon of the eastern side of the state.
We should invest in forest management to protect our forests and watersheds from the impact of extreme fire and drought. These lands are the lifeblood of our rural economy including tourism, forest products, and agriculture.
Restoring the health of our forests will allow the natural recharging of our streams and aquifers, providing much-needed water that an arid state usually captures.
New Mexico used to have more than 100 timber mills and a vibrant forest economy. We should immediately rebuild that once thriving economy, restoring our healthy forests while renewing hope in some of the most economically distressed, rural counties of our state.
An entire new industry based around bio-fuels production and bio-mass energy can be created producing alternative energy while cleaning up the overgrown forests.
In all this, we will diminish the likelihood of the massive fires that destroy our forests for generations to come.
WATER: Conserve, Protect and Develop New Sources
New Mexico needs to become a global leader in research and development around all things water. Water security, food security, health, and energy will be major issues confronting the world for the foreseeable future. New Mexico can lead the way in resource management, especially as it relates to water and energy. If we in New Mexico can solve our own water problems through technology, planning and policy initiatives, we can be a leader in the water issues for the nation.
As governor, I will establish a new approach to reclaiming and reusing water. In counties that produce oil and gas, millions of gallons of water are disposed of each day. Where practical, water should be treated and provided for use in industry and preserve our aquifers for use in towns which face dwindling water supplies.
Other states have become aggressive in trying to take water from whatever source they can find. Los Angeles and Las Vegas, Nevada have made attempts to secure water in New Mexico and pipeline it to their cities. If we allow our water to be shipped out of state we forfeit forever our future.
New Mexico will protect its water.
Clean Up Water to Provide New Sources
In many areas of the state, we have abundant water, it is just not clean water. New Mexico should become a world leader in the cleanup and reuse of water.