CVNM statement in response to Gov. Martinez’s comments on Gold King Mine spill

Conservation Voters New Mexico (CVNM) is saddened by the devastation that has been caused by the Gold King Mine spill, and stands in solidarity with all communities that have been and will be impacted by this event.

In response to the comments Governor Martinez made today concerning the Gold King Mine spill that has now reached New Mexico’s Four Corners region, CVNM Executive Director Demis Foster issued the following statement:

“We call upon Governor Martinez to address the very real toxic legacy that has plagued many of New Mexico’s rural, impoverished, indigenous, Latino, and traditional agricultural communities. This tragedy serves as a somber reminder that the health and environmental risks posed by industry still exist long after a company ends operations. Even in the hands of experts from the EPA, there are inherent threats from industry’s pollution and waste.

CVNM stands with our leaders at this difficult time who are working to address the immediate threats posed by the spill. However, Governor Martinez needs to take a hard look at her own actions throughout her time in office that have weakened safeguards that once protected New Mexico’s water. Not only has her administration allowed polluters to write their own regulations like the Copper Rule, but she also moved to gut key protections like the Pit Rule — a rule that protected our groundwater from exposure to chemicals generated by oil and gas operations.

In the wake of this tragedy, we urge Governor Martinez to act swiftly to put strong environmental protections back in place to protect all New Mexicans from exposure to pollution.”