This story is a staff report from The Paper.

Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham concluded her time at the U.N. Climate Change Conference in Glasgow, Scotland on Sunday, when she committed the state to further high-impact climate actions alongside other national governors. The governor joined the United States Climate Alliance and the governors of Hawai’i, Illinois, Oregon and Washington to make climate action commitments around energy, buildings, industry, transportation, just transition and equity, resilience, natural and working lands, and the social cost of greenhouse gases. “This week was a true call to action for every city, state, province and nation on Earth,” said Lujan Grisham. “I’m bringing back to New Mexico ambitious commitments and valuable partnerships that will inform our continued action on climate in our state.”   

Specifically, New Mexico is committed to:

  • Reducing methane emissions from the oil and gas sector 45-50 percent by 2025 and no less than 75-80 percent by 2030, below 2015 levels.
  • Promoting sustainable communities that provide a range of affordable housing and transportation options that increase access to opportunity and reduce vehicle miles travelled.
  • Implementing a low-carbon fuel standard to reduce the carbon intensity of fuels.
  • Ensuring a just transition that provides for sustainable livelihoods for those reliant on the fossil fuel economy in the shift to more sustainable systems and practices.
  • Creating a statewide climate assessment or vulnerability assessment.
  • Conserving at least 30 percent of land and waters by 2030.
  • Committing to large scale restoration of forests and other locally indigenous ecosystems.

Throughout the week, the governor was part of public discussions with the Environmental Defense FundWhite House National Climate Advisor Gina McCarthySpecial Presidential Envoy for Climate John Kerry and UK leadership. In addition to public appearances alongside subnational, national and global leaders throughout the week, the governor also had productive meetings with officials and business organizations looking to get involved in New Mexico’s expanding clean energy economy. “With Governor Lujan Grisham at the helm, New Mexico’s leadership on comprehensive efforts to address climate change are getting noticed across the country and around the world,” said Jon Goldstein, Senior Director of Regulatory and Legislative Affairs at Environmental Defense Fund.

Lujan Grisham was also joined at COP26 by members of her Cabinet, including Energy, Minerals and Natural Resources Secretary Sarah Cottrell Propst, Environment Secretary James Kenney and Economic Development Secretary Alicia J. Keyes. “At COP26, New Mexico’s climate action — including strong rules to reduce methane emissions from the oil and gas sector – showed that subnational governments have a critical role to play in addressing global climate change,” said Energy, Minerals and Natural Resources Department Secretary Sarah Cottrell Propst. “I’m grateful to have had the opportunity to learn from this global gathering.”   

“New Mexico is on the world stage – demonstrating leadership in climate and environmental policies while learning from nations, states, cities from around the world,” said Environment Department Secretary James Kenney. “I proudly represented the efforts of thousands of dedicated state employees across multiple agencies. We wouldn’t be where we are today without their hard work. New Mexico has a huge head start in advancing clean-energy initiatives that are slowing climate change. Businesses want to be part of this carbon-neutral movement and have taken notice,” said Keyes. “If we move quickly, New Mexico can leverage investments to create these innovative, higher-paying jobs and spur economic development in many corners of the state.” 

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This story is a staff report from The Paper.