THE NEW MEXICO case study focuses on the fossil fuel industry and
economic welfare challenges that underrepresented minorities face.

As a minority-majority state, 48.5% of the state population identify as Hispanic or Latino and 8.6% as Native American. The state has roughly 21% of individuals living below the poverty line, which is 5.8% more than the national average and is unevenly distributed across regions as illustrated by Los Alamos and McKinley (5.1% and 38.1% below the poverty line, respectively). In the coming years, New Mexico will primarily experience water stress that could potentially impact mining activities as well as the general population. However, New Mexico is home to leading energy research institutions that could further develop technologies that will aid in the future decarbonization efforts, and the state has recently adopted a new set of forward leaning climate and social goals that may be in tension with its legacy fossil fuel industry. New Mexico also has considerable solar generation resources but faces transmission isolation from major population centers.

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