While New Mexicans struggle to make ends meet amid high gas prices, skyrocketing food costs, and an economy that remains in a recession, Democrat Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham’s administration is working overtime to raise the cost of gas.
New Mexico’s Environmental Improvement Board adopted new ozone pollution rules in April, which went into effect on Friday, spurring the Independent Petroleum Association of New Mexico to file a legal appeal challenging the rule, which would increase the cost of gas.
Jim Winchester, Executive Director of the Independent Petroleum Association of New Mexico (IPANM), said, “At a time when the public supports responsible domestic production to reduce gasoline prices and a decrease in our dependency on foreign sources of energy that are unquestionably worse for the environment, IPANM strongly feels this is the wrong rule at the wrong time.”
He continued, “While IPANM does support a fair and balanced Ozone Precursor regulation, we have no choice but to appeal this version of the rule that will force operators to plug still-productive wells and will inflict economic hardship on New Mexicans with little to no gain for the environment.”
IPANM wrote in a press release, “Today’s filing with the New Mexico State Court of Appeals against the Environmental Improvement Board will be followed by technical arguments to be filed by IPANM within 30 days that will identify the specific provisions to be challenged. With the matter now in the court, IPANM will not comment on the specifics of the pending objections other than to point to our concerns raised throughout the 3-year process that were not included in the New Mexico Environment Department’s final draft rule submitted to the EIB.”
In April the group noted the out-of-state environmental groups rigging the process to benefit their interests while ignoring consumers who will be saddled with the cost of such regulations. IPANM wrote then, “IPANM’s concern throughout this process is that the state would appease out-of-state environmental groups pushing provisions based on anti-oil & gas ideology instead of real emissions data and facts. Unfortunately, the state’s own news release seems to confirm our suspicion by offering the celebratory quotes of environmental groups and a Biden administration that has blatantly declared war on domestic production while encouraging foreign adversaries to produce, pollute, and export fuels to the United States without any accountability.”
Following the new rule going into effect, Larry Behrens, the Communications Director of Power The Future, wrote, “It’s clear Michelle Lujan Grisham feels our families aren’t already paying enough. After her failed attempt to raise the cost of gas through the legislature, Governor Lujan Grisham is acting like Joe Biden and simply issuing new orders.”
“This rule will not only raise the cost of living on our families, but it will place a massive burden on the remaining small businesses that are already struggling. This appeal is a critical first step to stopping Governor Lujan Grisham from taking unilateral action to raise the cost of gas even further,” Behrens concluded.