Contributions to climate change

Based on energy consumption data from the Energy Information Agency released June 1, 2007, New Mexico's total CO2 emissions from fossil fuel combustion in million metric tons for 2004 was 58.32, made up of contributions by sector from: commercial, 1.67; industrial, 8.27; residential, 2.31; transportation, 15.64; and electric power, 30.43. New Mexico's Greenhouse Gas reduction target is to lower emissions of greenhouse gases to 2000 levels by 2012. In addition, the legislators approved a state law requiring New Mexico power producers to generate 10 percent of energy from renewable sources by 2011.

By executive order in June 2005, the governor established the New Mexico Climate Change Advisory Group to propose options for reduction of greenhouse gas emissions. The group completed its work and filed a final report in October 2006. The executive order also required reports on possible impacts of climate change on New Mexico and water resources. The governor established the Climate Change Action Council in December 2006 to progress previous work toward implementation. New Mexico holds member status with the Western Regional Climate Action Initiative, in which the partners will set an overall regional goal for reducing greenhouse gas emissions and design a market-based mechanism to help achieve that reduction goal. New Mexico joined the Climate Registry, a voluntary national initiative to track, verify and report greenhouse gas emissions, with acceptance of data from state agencies, corporations and educational institutions beginning in January of 2008.

SEE ALSo: Desertification; Deserts; New Mexico Climate Center.

bibliography. Mark Bowen, Thin Ice Unlocking the Secrets of Climate in the World's Highest Mountains (Henry Holt and Co., 2005); Environmental Protection Agency, "Climate Change in New Mexico," www.epa.gov (cited November 2007); A.N. Garwood, Weather America: Latest Detailed Climatological Data for Over 4,000 Places and Rankings (Toucan Valley Publications, 1996); Natalie Goldstein, Earth Almanac (Onyx Press, 2002); New Mexico Government, "New Mexico Climate Change Initiatives," www. nmenv.state.nm.us (cited November 2007).

Lyn Michaud Independent Scholar

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