About the Science
New Mexico is known as the "Land of Enchantment"—a place of great beauty, abundant natural resources, and rich cultural diversity. However, New Mexico faces severe challenges as it tries to grow its economy and at the same time conserve its water resources and protect the environment—challenges that are exacerbated by climate change and population growth.
Energize New Mexico focuses on one overarching question that has great potential to transform the research enterprise in New Mexico and to promote sustainable development: How can New Mexico realize its energy development potential in a sustainable manner? This question encompasses two interrelated components:
- How can the efficiency of resource utilization or extractive technologies be increased? This question focuses on use-inspired fundamental research in the areas of bioalgal fuels, solar energy, and osmotic power production from oil and gas industry produced waters.
- Can we sustain extractive energy development with no or minimal risk to water and environmental resources? This question focuses on geothermal energy development, uranium mining and environmental remediation, and the social/science nexus that includes dynamic systems modeling and understanding factors that affect human choice and decision-making.