Key Hearing to Protect the Pecos
Northern New Mexico's Pecos River watershed is home to a remarkably diverse community of farmers, ranchers, hunters, anglers and outdoor recreationists who are all united by the beauty and health of the expansive waters that feed into it. There is an unfortunate history of poorly managed mining and development projects that has put these New Mexicans, their way of life, and their cultural identity at risk.
VIDEO: U.S. Senator Martin Heinrich discusses the Pecos Watershed Protection Act in an Energy and Natural Resources Committee hearing, November 18, 2020
Like so many New Mexicans, I was alarmed when I learned about the potential for new hard metal mining exploration in the Santa Fe National Forest that would threaten the health of the Pecos watershed. If we've learned anything from the costly cleanup at the Terrero remediation site in the 1990s, it's that we must prevent future mining accidents that would cause any further damage or contamination in this watershed, not respond to them after they occur.
Many New Mexicans have stepped up to say this is not the right place for industrial development. I wholeheartedly agree. That's why I worked with local community leaders to introduce the Pecos Watershed Protection Act to prevent future harmful mining operations in the Pecos Valley. I'm pleased to report that my legislation received a key hearing this week before the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee. This hearing was an important step toward passing permanent protection for the Pecos.
I hope you will keep me informed about your thoughts on this and other important issues. You can count on me to keep fighting to ensure this vital watershed will remain healthy and intact for generations to come.
United States Senator