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Incumbent, New Mexico House of Representatives District 44

Kathleen Cates

Climate Science-Based Policy

  1. Do you agree with climate scientists that we are facing a climate emergency?

    1. Yes

  2. Do you agree with climate scientists that the brunt of the impacts we face due to climate change will be put on those who contributed the least emissions? (The global South, Indigenous, and low-income communities)

    1. Yes

  3. Do you agree with climate scientists that greenhouse gas emissions must be reversed within 6 years in order to achieve carbon neutrality in time to keep global temperature rise below 1.5 degrees and to avoid catastrophic runaway climate disruption? - IPCC Report

    1. Yes

  4. If elected, what specific policies will you initiate in your first year of service to begin transitioning our state economy from an extractive economy to a regenerative economy within the timeframe set by the world's leading scientist?

    1. I will be carrying 2 different water conservation bills.

Community Engagement Questions

  1. What are the current needs or issues you see across the state, city, or county and how do you plan on addressing those issues if you are elected?

    1. Increase investments in water management, conservation as well as alternative energy sources and protecting our natural resources. Diversifying revenue streams by increasing hospitality industry and tourism by protecting our landscapes.

  2. What is your vision of the ideal relationship between communities and environmental/climate justice?

    1. I am not sure of this question but I have and will continue to support mandatory set backs of oil drilling from residential and public spaces as well as water sources

  3. What role do you believe communities actively play in policy development? Especially when addressing issues that have been inherited and faced for generations?

    1. Policy should never be made without community stakeholders…not just input but direction

  4. What changes will you propose so that community driven solutions have equitable influence over policy-making, and are valued as much if not more than private profit driven solutions?

    1. As a Legislative committee member-I always ask about tribal and rural involvement in the development of the policy

  5. How do you plan on engaging communities and youth in policy development or proposals?

    1. My treasure and future Governor is 25 years old. I continue to reach out, mentor and encourage by stressing the need that we need policy makers that will be alive when the consequences of those policies are happening.

  6. Describe your previous experience working on social/health/environmental justice issues, do you have experience working with impacted communities to co-develop solutions?  How will you use this experience to tackle the climate crisis?

    1. My back ground is housing and healthcare. I support these issues and stand by the champions in the house like Rep Mathew McQueen.

A Just Transition

  1. What connections do you believe exist between our state/local economy and budget and environmental and climate impacts? How will you work to ensure that the state/local budget fosters economic, environmental, and climate justice?

    1. Protecting our land and controlling and investing in infrastructure so that it can used by tourism appropriately is a key priority of mine to diversify the revenue streams

  2. How do you see the role of oil and gas corporations in New Mexico’s future as a result of the climate crisis?

    1. They must be required to cap old wells that are leaking methane. Many of the corps are diversifying their own energy sources and I would support any authentic change towards that

  3. Define environmental racism in your own words and provide an example in NM.

    1. A great examples is: the proposal that New Mexico become the Nuclear waste dump for the country. Pool, indigenous and brown people have not had a voice. Evident at the Trinity Site and the Farmington Coal plant

  4. How will you be playing a role in a just transition away from fossil fuels for NM?

    1. More investments in solar, geothermal and wind power

  5. Do you believe climate action is an issue of intergenerational justice? What is the responsibility of your generation to the youth and future generations if elected? Explain.

    1. I am a Parent and an elected official-it is my job to understand the generational justice.

  6. How can pollution and contamination impact our youth and communities?

    1. We have data from schools of increased respiratory issues of children exposed to methane

  7. How will you include Traditional Land Based Knowledge when developing policy?

    1. How would you want me too? I participate in many meetings that do but I will ask stakeholders on what they want.

  8. If elected, will you support investing some of the money from oil and gas revenues to fund A) dedicated resources for a Just Transition Study to model alternative economic pathways for our state including oil and gas revenue replacement and phase-down          B) create a just transition fund to invest in community-driven climate planning for local economies to divest from harmful industries and build alternative economic visions and investments that effectively contribute to climate mitigation and community health?  Explain.

    1. Yes

    2. I need to read the bills. Who is carrying it? Can I sponsor?

  9. Name specific alternative sources for state/local revenue that you'd pursue and propose if elected

    1. Film, tourism, alt energy

  10. Do you support the development of Hydrogen energy, nuclear energy, and/or carbon capture and sequestration in NM? Why or Why Not?

    1. Mostly -no because it is changing one risk for another but I am always listening. If it will move us in the right direction I am willing to consider it.

  11. Do you support community ownership of energy where Cities/Counties/Indigenous Nations are able to own, produce, and sell electricity to residents and keep energy dollars local?

    1. Yes

  12. What do you believe is the fossil fuel industry/utility’s responsibility for cleanup and how as an elected official in the public office for which you are running do you plan to hold industry accountable for pollution and cleanup?

    1. I want the leaking caps to be sealed. Just spoke to a company that developed a product at Sandia Labs and the Land Commission is going to test it-I support that

  13. Do you support the State Land Office’s moratorium/prohibition on new oil and gas leasing on state trust lands within one mile of schools or other educational facilities? Would you support legislation to create  a public health buffer zone prohibiting oil and gas drilling within one mile of schools on ALL NM lands?

    1. Yes

  14. Have you accepted any donations from fossil fuel companies or utilities? 

    1. No

  15. Can you commit to not accepting donations or funds from fossil fuel companies if you are elected?

    1. No

  16. What are your ideas to loosen the grip of industry on the state legislature and strengthen our democracy?

    1. Holding fossil fuel companies accountable and supporting their efforts as well as everyone’s efforts to transition our energy sources and diversify our revenue streams

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