If you haven’t seen it already, there’s an excellent piece in Forbes that goes into depth on the economic risk New Mexico is at due to the proposed ban on hydraulic fracturing on federal lands. Last week, President Joe Biden issued a 60-day moratorium on all oil and gas-related leasing and permitting on federal lands.
Author David Blackmon points out that the state has received a 50% share of the royalties that the federal government assesses on production on federal land. New Mexico ’s collection of federal royalties and proceeds from lease sales is the highest of any Western state. There are not royalties associated with wind or solar, Blackmon points out.
This issue needs to be an all hands on deck moment for New Mexico officials, regardless of political party or what region of the state they live. Diversifying our economy is a wonderful goal and absolutely worth pursuing, but New Mexico also still needs to be able to pay the bills today and tomorrow. As stated before, companies will just move to Texas and drill on private land.
Even a perfect transition will take many years – what do we do in the mean time? This isn’t just an issue important to those employed in the oil and gas industry – it’s every part of New Mexico. Our thoughts are also with the men and women working out of the BLM office in Carlsbad, and with everyone out there who is worried about their job right now.
COVID update. There were 34 new positive COVID-19 cases for Eddy County announced on Sunday and 49 new positives announced on Saturday, as well as two COVID-related deaths. Numbers for Eddy County are consistently lower than they were a few weeks ago, as is the positivity rate, but we would all like to see them drop much more.
The vaccination rollout is taking place in Carlsbad and Eddy County, and the process has been going very well. However, we know that things are not moving fast enough for some of our residents who are interested in obtaining their vaccines. We very sincerely appreciate all of the calls.
We have reached out to the New Mexico Department of Health and will help however we can with moving this process forward. Reminder – if you haven’t done so already, please register for your vaccine at https://cvvaccine.nmhealth.org. Anyone who is part of the Phases 1A and 1B who has completed their registration should be receiving an email or text notifying them of when there is vaccine available in their area.
We do understand that sometimes a person thinks they have completed their registration, when in fact they have only completed the first part of the process. The confirmation code should allow them to re-enter the system, so they can then complete the remainder of the process.
Carlsbad Mayor Dale Janway