New Mexico environmental groups, including the Sierra Club of the Rio Grande, plan a rally tomorrow morning in Albuquerque at the scene of the annual meeting of the Public Service Company of New Mexico shareholders. Sierra Club spokeswoman Camilla Fiebelman wants the shareholders to consider alternative energy sources when deciding how to replace the energy lost when PNM mothballs two coal-burning plants in the Four Corners. *****051414-Fiebelman-3 (q: as an alternative) :26***** PNM is New Mexico’s largest public utility.
Firefighters in southwestern New Mexico report containing 15-percent of the Signal Fire, which has been burning north of Silver City since Sunday. KOB-TV reports that firefighters have one big goal before Saturday: Get as many fire lines in place as they can to try and contain the fire in case the winds come back this weekend. More than 500 people are battling the blaze.
Kitty litter may be the source of February's radiation leak at the Waste Isolation Pilot Plant, according to the Carlsbad Current Argus News. Scientist Jim Conca who worked at WIPP until 2010 says a change from non-organic to organic litter may have cause an explosion inside a waste drum, releasing the radioactive isotopes. A WIPP press release this week said that photos taken over the weekend showed signs of melted plastic and rubber on 55-gallon drums. New Mexico Environment Department Secretary Ryan Flynn said the kitty litter theory is just one of many under review.
The New Mexico State Police may be the next law enforcement agency to require officers to wear lapel cameras. State Police Chief Pete Kassetas told KOAT-TV that a handful of officers have been experimenting with the cameras for the last year and a half. Currently, the department uses dashboard cameras to capture officer interaction with the public. But Kassetas believes the cameras could bridge the gap between what happens near police cruisers and what happens out of view. The Albuquerque Police Department began requiring officers to wear lapel cameras after the department came under fire for the high number of police shootings since 2010. New Mexico State Police recently had its own string of police shootings. The video of one incident went viral on the internet last year when an officer was filmed firing at a van full of children during a chaotic traffic stop near Taos.
Records obtained by an Albuquerque TV station show that a police officer's lapel camera wasn't working during several encounters where possible excessive force was used. KOAT reports Jeremy Dear's lapel camera wasn't working in two other incidents, as well as during the fatal shooting of a 19-year-old woman.
The U-S Justice Department reports that 26-year old Robert Romero of Santa Fe, pleaded guilty Tuesday to federal narcotics trafficking and firearms charges. Under the terms of his plea agreement, Romero will be sentenced to ten years in federal prison followed by four years of supervised release. He was one of five men who were indicted last year on federal narcotics and firearms charges as the result of a DEA-led investigation into an organization that allegedly manufactured and distributed crack cocaine.
Santa Fe Weather: Mostly sunny today with a high of 62. Tonight, mostly clear, with the low down to 33. Tomorrow: sunny and warmer with a high of 71.