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V.21 No.16 | 4/19/2012
Pete Domenici Jr.

News Profile

Mining the Law

An interview with Pete Domenici Jr., attorney for industry

For Domenici Jr., it's a question of balance: "You start with the premise that the reality is that human beings will affect their environment when resources are developed," he says. "So as a society we have to figure out ways to protect the environment while allowing population growth and economic growth to occur."

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Feature

The Good Fight

For all of the polluting industries that have thrived here since the Manhattan Project, New Mexico is also teeming with citizen environmental activists. These are people who in their free time—after work, after the kids are asleep—pore over reams of documents, learn about bureaucratic processes and permits, and put up a fight on behalf of their neighbors. They study, they attend meetings, they write letters, they become experts on industry and its effects. Here are a few of their stories.

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Eric Williams ericwphoto.com

Feature

Esther and Steven Abeyta

There are two Superfund sites and a high concentration of heavy industry in the area where Esther Abeyta’s family has lived for three generations. Her home is on land her grandmother bought for $90 and two chickens. And as the San Jose Neighborhood Association president, she’s determined to stay ahead of health and environmental issues.

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Eric Williams ericwphoto.com

Feature

Angela West

A longtime resident of the South Valley who helped start the Mountain View Neighborhood Association 30 years ago, President Angela West is well-versed in the ups and downs of the community she calls home. She says she’s also proud that her association protects the future while staying rooted in the past.

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Feature

Barbara Rockwell

Barbara Rockwell and her husband David fulfilled a dream when they moved to the southern end of the Village of Corrales and started building their home. “Corrales in 1977 was a rural village farming alfalfa, apples, corn and chile,” she says. But it was slowly becoming a bedroom suburb of Albuquerque, she adds. “There was no Intel on the western horizon, just the flowing line of the mesa and open fields of grass,” Rockwell says in an email interview. “Above all, there was the fresh, sweet air.”

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Eric Williams ericwphoto.com

Feature

Greg Mello and Trish Williams-Mello

Greg Mello and Trish Williams-Mello have made standing up to the nuclear industry a way of life.

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Eric Williams ericwphoto.com

Feature

The Orphaned Land

V.B. Price on the state’s toxic legacy

Before germ theory and the sanitary practices that resulted, doctors were mystified about the role of microorganisms in infection and death. The idea of hand-washing was controversial. Surgical procedures were performed in unseen filth.

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V.21 No.15 | 4/12/2012
Brap Ola

Neverending Stories

Super Sucker Smackdown

The State Engineer rejects a company’s application to pump water from beneath tiny Datil, N.M. But Augustin Plains Ranch LLC vows to fight back.

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news

The Daily Word in awesome Canada, Opposite Day and the sinking ghost ship

Thousands pilgrimage to Chimayó today.

Las Vegas, N.M., fights fracking and bans oil and gas drilling.

Why Canada should be cheered for ditching the penny.

Menacing Easter bunnies.

Kid sells his kidney for an iPhone.

Marine Corps pilot says he played tag with a UFO in the ’70s.

Guy gets naked for Opposite Day.

Jesus appears in duct tape in Albuquerque.

Coast Guard sinks a ghost ship with a cannon.

Ex-Gov. Gary Johnson says making Gov. Susana Martinez the veep pick would be Sarah Palin, Part Deux.

Smallest town in the States sells for only $900,000.

Why Catholics really eat fish on Fridays.

Pit bull takes a bullet for his owner.

Chevy Chase is an asshole.

V.21 No.13 | 3/29/2012

News Bite

Fuel terminal near a Superfund site seeks a permit to emit more pollutants.

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V.21 No.12 | 3/22/2012
Julia Minamata juliaminamata.com

Environment

Recycled Fears

Company makes overtures to a leery neighborhood

After a series of polluting industrial neighbors, one North Valley community is concerned about a coming recycling plant.

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news

Can’t see the forest—or the trees

Margaret Wright

I'm still poring over the findings of a U.S. Forest Service study released last month that gave Albuquerque a high ranking in two key areas—and neither has stellar tidings for our local climate and quality of life.

Researchers documented a high loss of our urban forest area and an increase of impervious ground cover. This means that trees disappeared across the city at the same time that rooftops and pavement spread. The study found us up there in terms of tree loss with New Orleans and fast-growing, drought-stricken Houston.

More impervious surfaces mean more challenges for our thirsty city. Water that falls on an open field has a drastically different outcome compared to water falling on blacktop. The more paved-over, compacted area there is, the less water is absorbed into the ground. It’s also more likely that the water that does soak in (or run off to the river) is polluted and prone to flooding.

You can check out the full text of the Forest Service study here.

Peter McBride
Feature

Tonight! Outdoor cinema at the Banff Mountain Film Festival

The world-touring film fest makes a pit stop at the KiMo Theatre at 7 p.m. Its fluid and beautifully shot collection of short films features mountain culture, outdoor sports and environmental subjects—including Chasing Water, previewed in this week’s feature. Bonus: $10 to $12 tickets benefit the New Mexico Wilderness Alliance and the Mountain Fund.

V.21 No.11 | 3/15/2012
Peter McBride

Feature

A River Ran Through It

The tale of the once-mighty Colorado waterway, part of Tuesday’s Banff Mountain Film Festival tour stop

In a sense, photographer Pete McBride has been preparing to make Chasing Water all his life. Raised on a cattle ranch in central Colorado, he grew up working hay fields irrigated by snowmelt that carved the Grand Canyon and slaked the thirst of the Southwest. “I often used to think about water,” says McBride in the film. “I wondered how much went into our fields and how much returned to the creek ... I wondered how long it would take irrigation water to reach the sea.” Later, as a photographer for National Geographic, Outside and Men’s Journal, McBride traveled to some of the world’s most exotic locales—often, as it happened, shooting stories that related in some way to water.

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