Target: Governor of New Mexico Susana Martínez
Goal: Save wildlife habitats around the Gila River from being destroyed as a result of water redirection
A proposition is in place that would severely effect wildlife habitats in and around the Gila River in New Mexico. The proposal to dam and redirect water from the Gila River would have serious consequences for wildlife, many of whom are endangered. Not only this, but many experts have slated the project as a certain failure, citing poor analysis as a portent of doom. Sign this petition to persuade New Mexico’s governor to abandon the Gila River project.
The Gila River is home to a plethora of wildlife, including endangered fish and mountain lions, and is also one of the largest breeding locations for birds in North America. Moreover, the rare northern Mexican garter snake has been recently discovered in Gila’s floodplain (and will potentially be added to the federal endangered species list). The Gila is the only undammed river in New Mexico, and one of the few remaining undammed rivers in the U.S.
Many experts, such as the former director of New Mexico’s Interstate Stream Commission, Norm Gaume, have testified that the project will fail. Gaume stated that the project would produce “little or no water” and calls out a misleading representation of analysis, costs, and benefits. The project is also very expensive, costing up to $469 million, and only a small portion would be covered by federal subsidies, meaning that taxpayers would bear the majority of the financial burden.
The Gila River project has an incredible number of downsides, and the benefits projected by analysis are misleading and overblown. If this project goes ahead, it would spell disaster for many endangered species and crucial wildlife habitats. In 2014, the American Rivers conservation group listed the Gila as one of the top 10 most endangered rivers in the U.S. This project would only take the Gila further to the top of that list.
Sign this petition to persuade New Mexico to abandon its plans for this ambitious and fruitless expense, and to consider other methods of increasing the state’s water supply without harming animals and the environment.
Dear Governor Martínez,
I write in protest of the Gila River project, which would see hundreds of millions of dollars invested into damming and diverting water in New Mexico. Not only would this project spell danger for a rich ecology and endangered wildlife, it has also been denounced as a project that is doomed to fail by many experts.
In a poll taken in 2013, the majority of people are against this huge project, and would like to see your administration find alternative ways to secure New Mexico’s water supply, such as agricultural conservation and sustainable groundwater practices.
Please do not waste time and money on a project that has been discredited by many experts, and would only serve to ruin one of the most endangered rivers in the entire United States. One of the highest populations of breeding birds in the U.S. reside near the Gila River, and many endangered fish, mammals, and reptiles also call the Gila their home. There are far better alternatives than the damming and diversion of water from the Gila River. Please use all your power to research and utilize these methods.
[Your Name Here]
Photo credit: Gila National Forest via Flickr