New Mexico took big steps forward this year on voting rights, free lunch for all kids, abortion rights and gender-affirming health care, creating a conservation fund and protecting against a dangerous plan to “temporarily” store all the nation’s highest-level nuclear waste.

Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham, the Legislature and advocates should be proud of these advances. But glaringly and painfully absent was action to directly address the climate crisis.

The reality we face is that the Permian oil boom has escalated our state’s climate pollution since the governor took office in 2019 and made strong initial progress to address the climate emergency. A year after our state’s largest wildfire and with record flooding, air pollution and drought, New Mexicans deserve comprehensive action to protect our communities. As the nation’s No. 2 oil producer, New Mexico has an outsize climate impact. That should go for our solutions, too.

Camilla Feibelman is director of the Sierra Club Rio Grande Chapter.

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