A plan to store nuclear waste in an interim facility in New Mexico has met resistance from Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham.
The Associated Press reports that Lujan Grisham sent a letter to US Energy Secretary Rick Perry last week, saying a plan by Holtec International, a private nuclear technology company, could place New Mexico residents in danger.
The company wants to temporarily store spent nuclear fuel rods from 70 commercial reactors around the country in a multi-billion dollar facility that will be built near Carlsbad and Hobbs. The cooling process can take decades to complete. “Establishing an interim storage facility in this region would be economic malpractice,” the governor wrote in her letter.
A number of environmental groups have spoken out against the plan, but Holtec International says the facility would be completely safe. Officials in Eddy and Lea Counties reportedly support the project, saying it will bring economic growth to the area.
ACLU Protests Private Border Wall
The American Civil Liberties Union of New Mexico is calling on authorities to block the construction of a private border wall in Sunland Park that they say is obstructing public access to a historical monument.
The group We Build the Wall says it raised over $20 million from more than 325,000 donors to donate to the federal government for the construction of a border wall between the US and Mexico. However, the government isn't building the wall and did not accept the donations. According to the group's website, “We are better equipped than our own government to use the donated funds to build an actual wall on the southern border.” KOAT reports that the group finished building a half-mile wall in Sunland Park last week.
The ACLU called on the International Boundary and Water Commission, which manages the land the wall was built on, to intervene. It claims if the wall is continued, it will block access to a historical marker, Monument One. The IBWC says it has not issued We Build the Wall any permits.
Ranchers Fight Transmission Line
Some dairy farmers in Bosque are trying to halt plans to run a massive power line across their lands.
According to KRQE, locals began circulating a petition against the power line's construction last week, saying it could harm the local dairy industry. Independent renewable energy company Pattern Development and the New Mexico Renewable Energy Transmission Authority say the Western Spirit transmission line will collect renewable energy from the wind-rich area near Clines Corners and deliver it to the existing grid in northwest New Mexico. The company says the project will bring billions in new investments and hundreds of new construction jobs.
But the farmers say that the power lines will be eyesores and radiation from high voltage could potentially affect their livestock negatively. Pattern Development reportedly says it might be forced to use eminent domain to take the private property for a public purpose but would rather find an amicable solution.