13 Years and Counting: Anatomy Of An EPA Civil Rights Investigation

The project was permitted by the state in 2002. Three years later, the EPA agreed to investigate Reade’s claims. Then: silence, for nine years… Environmental injustice “definitely exists in New Mexico,” Meiklejohn said. “It’s an issue because the state laws and state regulations don’t protect politically powerless people.” NBCNews.com

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08/11/2015 • Back to top

NM Supreme Court to Review Copper Rule

“Our clients are not trying to stop copper mining; they are trying to ensure that copper mining does not pollute ground water.”
Douglas Meiklejohn, NMELC Executive Director

SANTA FE, N.M.— The New Mexico Supreme Court has granted the petition filed by the New Mexico Environmental Law Center (NMELC) requesting review of the Copper Rule, which regulates discharges from copper mines in New Mexico. The Supreme Court order, dated July 13th, states that it will review all the issues raised in the petition.

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07/14/2015 • Back to top

Santolina opponents file lawsuit against zoning change decision

The lawsuit was filed by Meiklejohn in the New Mexico Second Judicial District Court on behalf of the SouthWest Organizing Project, the New Mexico Health Equity Working Group, the Pajarito Village Association, and three individuals. Those that filed the lawsuit argue the two commissioners had already made up their minds on approving Santolina before a vote, which they say violated the county’s due process requirements. Albuquerque Business First

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07/08/2015 • Back to top

Advocates Get Chance to Shine Light on Racism in South Valley

“This hearing will finally give our clients the opportunity to shine a bright light on the environmental racism happening here.”
Eric Jantz, NMELC Staff Attorney

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — Last week, the Albuquerque Air Quality Control Board rejected a motion from the Albuquerque Environmental Health Department (EHD) for summary judgment on an air permit retroactively granted to a gasoline distribution depot. The Honstein Oil Co. fuel depot had been operating in the San Jose neighborhood for decades without an air permit. EHD urged the Board to decide the community members’ appeal of the air permit in a “paper trial,” rather than allowing the community to present evidence about the health impacts of air pollution from Honstein’s operation and other air pollution sources. (visit case page)

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07/08/2015 • Back to top

Next obstacle for Santolina: Court

While the Bernalillo County Commission recently approved three large measures advancing the Santolina planned development, opponents aren’t giving up…During hearings before the votes, attorney Douglas Meiklejohn asked De La Cruz and Johnson to recuse themselves for these reasons. Yet both refused to do so, arguing that they were voting in a legislative matter which allowed them to express opinions about it. County attorneys also made similar arguments. New Mexico Political Report

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07/07/2015 • Back to top

Why won’t Bernalillo County protect the health of San Jose neighborhood residents?

“It sends a message to the San Jose community that their lives don’t matter as much as those in non-minority and more affluent neighborhoods.”
Eric Jantz, NMELC Staff Attorney

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M.— On Tuesday, June 30th, oral arguments will be heard before the Albuquerque Air Quality Control Board over an air permit granted to a decades old gasoline distribution depot operating in the San Jose neighborhood of Albuquerque. The Environmental Health Division (EHD) granted Honstein Oil Co.’s permit application in June 2014, without considering the cumulative impacts of air pollution sources on public health and property. The permit allows the plant to emit 2.26 tons of volatile organic compounds per year. Get Fact Sheet

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06/29/2015 • Back to top

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