Candidate, NM House of Representatives, 21

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  • If elected, what specific policies will you pursue in 2023 to begin rapidly transitioning our economy to achieve carbon neutrality in the timeframe set by the world’s leading scientists?

I am planning to carry a bill to plug the orphan wells in our state and fine Gas and Oil companies for the methane they are emitting. Also looking at raising their bonding.

I also am looking at creating a Grow your Own Inspectors for the many wells in NM. The Gas and Oil companies have not been held accountable because though ED has the FTE's they cannot get the Inspectors they need. I have been speaking with NMSU to see if they can plan courses for inspector so that we can Grow our Own, giving the inspectors incentives and requiring them when they have completed the course to give the State 3 years of work. This is in the beginning stage but its what we need to get people in the Inspectors positions.

  • 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)

Yes 

  • Do you agree with climate scientists that greenhouse gas emissions must be reversed within 8 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?

Yes

  • In your opinion, why do political leaders set benchmarks and timeframes for emissions reductions that do not comport with climate science mandates?

I think the intensions are good, but the world changes and makes it difficult to achieve. This year the War in Ukraine has slowed so much of the progress we were making on Climate change. We need to get the focus back to the importance of climate change.
I don't think we can only blame political leaders. I think we need to get the word out so that it is understandable to the average person. I think we could work together to get people to understand what is happening to our world is a way that does not scares them but educates them. I also think we as American need to use less energy. WE need to look at the low hanging fruit and push that issue also. Walk instead of driving everywhere, turn of electricity when not needed...

  • If elected, what will you do differently than current leadership?

My passion is climate change (CC). I would like to create a series of videos talking about climate change. Education is needed and I have a platform that can be used. I would like to work with your organization to help do the educating. I'd like to work with the HS and MS to start CC groups at each school all over our state. Their is so much to do, and together I think we can get it started.

  • What measures will you propose and advance to ensure that economic recovery and the transition to a green economy fosters equity and economic & racial justice?

Education is again at the forefront. Those who lose their jobs need to be trained in another area such as renewables.

  • If elected, will you support the creation of a Just Transition Study & Fund to identify alternative revenue sources for our state budget and allocate funds from oil and gas directly into community-driven climate mitigation and adaptation strategies? Explain.

I will support the creation and hope to co-sponsor this type of legislation.

  • If elected, how will you include Indigenous and traditional land-based knowledge in the development of a sustainable economy for all of NM?

I have found that the Indigenous people have much more knowledge in the destruction of our land and how to create a sustainable economy.

  • Who will you talk to about climate issues? Who advises you? What is your plan for community consultation on climate issues?

I speak with various people in the environmental community. Sierra club is one I rely on for expertise.

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

Environmental Racism is placing hazardous waste in a poor or area made up of people of color. Placing a high level nuclear waste facility in SE New Mexico near Carlsbad, a highly hispanic region. (Holtec was asked to come to SE NM by a group made up primarily of white, males.)

  • What is the responsibility of your generation to the youth and future generations while in office? Explain.

I feel my responsibility is to get the word out on Climate Change. I am a Hispanic Female in a very Hispanic State. I think it's like kids are more successful when they are taught by a teacher that looks like them. I think I have a platform, I am hispanic and I need to educate people on what we all need to do to save our Mother Earth.

  • A) Do you support placing a moratorium on new gas development in the state of New Mexico? Why or Why Not?

Yes. Many owners of well leases have not drilled the wells. We need to hold them accountable to either use their lease or give it back to the state.

  • B) Do you support placing a moratorium on new gas plant investment for utilities in New Mexico? Why or Why Not?

Yes. We are a state prime for renewable energy. We need to push it and stop thinking hydrogen is going to save the world. Blue hydrogen will only make everything worse.

  • Do you support nuclear energy? Why or Why Not?

I would support nuclear energy. I don't think many people in NM would support it because they are still fearful of it.

  • Do you support the development of Hydrogen Production Hubs here in New Mexico? Why or Why Not?

If the Hub was green hydrogen then I would support it. But, because we are in a drought there is no way to produce green hydrogen effectively at this point. Bring Blue hydrogen to NM would only prolong our dependance on Natural Gas. We need to move away from fossil fuels so I do not believe hydrogen is a good move for NM. Renewables is where we should be placing our money.

  • 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?

Yes. Microgrid is an area we as a state need to move towards.

  • 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?

Now that the Federal government has begun to give grants for Ophan well clean up, we need to make sure our state is getting the money we need to clean up the ovefr 1700 wells here in NM. I believe raising the bonding limit needs to happen. We need to make sure we hold G&O accountable for all their emissions, especially methane.

  • Do you support utility bill forgiveness for low-income New Mexicans who have been hardest hit by the COVID-19 crisis?

Yes

  • Some are saying that COVID-19 is the dress rehearsal for the climate crisis. In fact, in many places throughout the world, the two are compounding crises. What do you think we can learn from the COVID-19 crisis when addressing the climate crisis?

COVID shut down the world and the poor countries needed help to survive. As Climate change continues the poorer countries are going to need help as drought causes crops to fail and land becomes uninhabitable. We are going to have to work together to get this under control.

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

I have been an Air Force Medic, a Computer Programmer and a teacher for the last 20 years. The only environment experience I have is working on bills to protect NM. I passed the Uranium Remediation Bill this year and got enough money for the Reforestation Project to continue with the help of EMNRD, NMSU, UNM and Eastern NM. This is a project I will continue to work on to make sure as fires hurt our State we can replant as soon as possible.

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

I think we need to modernize our legislature making it a full time paid legislature and stop our dependance on lobbyist and industry,

  • Name specific alternative sources for state revenue that you'd pursue and propose if elected

I'd like to see a turbine recycling manufacturing plant here in NM. I'd like to bring in more solar and turbine manufacturing companies to NM.

  • Have you accepted any donations from fossil fuel companies or utilities? Yes/No

No

Will you take the #fossilfree pledge? http://nofossilfuelmoney.org/politician-signup/

No