Protecting What We Love
New Mexico Gas Company strives to minimize impacts to the natural environment resulting from our work. Before construction, our environmental team screens every project and may provide recommendations on ways to minimize disturbances to waterways, archeological sites, animals and plants, as well as on ways to minimize erosion and sediment loss.
We might find an active nest and wait to begin a construction project until after the young have fledged. Or we might reroute a project to avoid archeological sites. Or we might bore a pipeline under an arroyo to protect waterways.
Our team works to protect New Mexico’s water, air, plants, animals and cultural resources. We operate in accordance with applicable laws and regulations through implementation of one or more of the following approaches:
- Avoid – Evaluate options and adjust where possible the location, scope and/or timing of the development to avoid impacts to a vulnerable species or sensitive ecosystems.
- Minimize – If possible, reduce the duration, intensity, extent and/or likelihood of impacts on ecosystems.
- Restore – Re-establish an ecosystem’s composition, structure and function to a healthy state.
- Cooperate – Work cooperatively with surface owners to minimize and restore areas disturbed by construction or operations.
We have transplanted threatened cacti from construction areas on numerous projects. When a beehive was discovered inside our Albuquerque headquarters, we brought in a specialist to relocate the hive instead of eradicating the bees.
We have even found dinosaurs on the Rio Puerco pipeline project west of Albuquerque. A team of geologists and paleontologists was brought in to mitigate the discovery of prehistoric alligators, turtles, manta rays and tyrannosaur dinosaurs – large meat-eating animals related to the mighty T-Rex.
Cleanup and restoration are performed on every project. After a pipeline is installed, we re-seed the grass or other vegetation and install erosion control measures to minimize water runoff and ensure that sediment is properly managed.
Our environmental team trains other employees to help them understand how to identify potential impacts on the environment and, most importantly, how to respond when a discovery is made.