How We're Tackling the Challenge

We focus on four key areas in our climate efforts:


New Mexico is home to two of the dirtiest and most polluting coal plants in the country. Thanks in part to intervention by the Sierra Club, both Four Corners Power Plant and San Juan Generating Station have retired or plan to retire several units. The Rio Grande Chapter and Sierra Club’s Beyond Coal Campaign work for the total transition from dangerous and dirty coal to renewable energy to make a better future for our children.

Laws and rules our members helped enact have increased renewable energy in New Mexico, but we have a long way to go.

Energy Policy

Our chapter works to transition from oil, gas, uranium and coal to clean, renewable energy. In the Legislature, chapter staff and volunteers successfully lobbied for the law that requires utilities to reach 20 percent renewable energy by 2020. In 2015, hundreds of Rio Grande Chapter supporters contacted their state representatives and senators in a successful campaign to stop an attempt to gut the law.

The Rio Grande Chapter also advocates at the Public Regulation Commission, which holds incredible power over our state's energy policy. We’ve helped enact strong net­-metering rules (which guide how utilities pay customers with solar at their business or residence), successfully lobbied for rules to increase the amount of solar energy that utilities are required to provide under the Renewable Energy Act, and protected those rules from being undermined by hostile forces.

Sierra Club's Dirty Fuels campaign in New Mexico is led by Robert Tohe, who works to protect tribal communities in Northwest and western New Mexico from the hazards of uranium mining and fracking.

Renewable Energy

The Sierra Club Rio Grande Chapter and our supporters successfully worked for a New Mexico law requiring our largest utilities to provide 20% of their electricity from renewable energy by 2020. We monitor and advocate at the Legislature and the Public Regulation Commission to keep our Renewable Energy Act and the rules that enforce intact and strong. Thanks to thousands of supporters contacting their elected representatives, we’ve fended off several attacks that would have severely curtailed renewable energy in New Mexico. We also advocate and work with local governments to develop pro-­renewables policy like community solar. It’s time to strengthen our renewable-­energy laws, policy and infrastructure to the levels needed to provide a safe climate for future generations.

Sierra Club's NM Northern Group Executive Committee member Sandrine Gaillard has developed a website to help homeowners decide if going solar makes sense for them, learn about the process and what's involved with going solar. Visit to read the details, and feel free to contact her at with your comments and questions.

Zero Waste

Reduce, Reuse, Recycle ­­ --  we pay too little attention to the first two when reducing our use and waste, both of which are key to addressing pollution and the energy ­burning that is driving climate disruption. Please visit to learn about how Eldorado at Santa Fe recycles, and contact Co-­chairs Joe Eigner at or Karen Sweeney at with questions or for more information, or to join our Zero Waste team.

How You Can Take Action on Climate Change

Join our Climate Action Team

The team meets monthly and comes up with great ideas and actions to increase renewable energy at the local and state level. Contact Camilla Feibelman for more information and to join the team at

Visit our Act on the Issues Page here to find out about how you can act on urgent and other environmental issues.

Climate change news

Opponents to Rally in NM Over Sale of Public Lands for Drilling

Opponents to Rally in NM Over Sale of Public Lands for Drilling
Opponents will rally at the BLM headquarters in Santa Fe on December 5, one day ahead of Thursday's planned online sale that includes 46,000 acres in the culturally significant Greater Chaco region ... Read More

 New Mexicans testify in Denver against gutting of EPA methane safeguards

 New Mexicans testify in Denver against gutting of EPA methane safeguards
On Wednesday, Nov. 14, starting at 8 a.m. Mountain, an array of New Mexicans are testifying at a public hearing in Denver, speaking out against the Trump administration’s plan to gut EPA’s New Source Performance Standards for oil and gas ... Read More

Don’t let NM double drilling density

Don't let NM double drilling density
We need your help! Please attend the New Mexico Oil Conservation Commission Hearing on Monday, Nov. 19 in Santa Fe to oppose a rule change that would allow natural-gas companies to drill twice the wells in the same space in ... Read More

Trump Administration Guts Second Oil and Gas Waste and Pollution Rule in a Week

Trump Administration Guts Second Oil and Gas Waste and Pollution Rule in a Week
The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) rolled back its Methane Waste Rule just seven days after the Trump administration gutted EPA rules to reduce methane pollution ... Read More