The energy industry will singlehandedly shape New Mexico’s future. Oil and gas coupled with “wind and solar” will respectively shape future state budgets and could become the state’s largest export to the west coast over the next 20 years.
According to the Legislative Finance Committee, “New Mexico typically receives about $2 billion in direct revenue from oil and gas production through severance and property taxes and royalty and rental income. Additional indirect income is generated by sales and income taxes on “oil and gas” drilling and service, which generate about $300 million. The State of New Mexico’s 2018 budget is $6.3 billion.”
According to the Wind Energy Foundation: “New Mexico stands out as an emerging wind powerhouse, adding wind power capacity at a faster rate than any other state in 2017. Wind farms supplied over 13 percent of the state’s electricity generation last year, enough to power over 422,000 average homes. New Mexico is now ranked 15th in the nation with installed capacity. A wave of new wind investment will soon advance the state’s leadership” in this arena.
Over the past seven years, favorability of the two industries traditionally has had stark differences. On average, 60 percent of state residents are favorable of the “solar and wind” industry versus 44 percent favorability of the “oil and gas” industry.
Breaking down favorability of the industries by age reveals the 35-49 demographic is the most favorable of solar/wind while the 50+ demographic is most favorable of oil/gas. Interestingly, the 65+ age group is least favorable of solar/wind compared to the 35-49 age group which is least favorable of oil/gas.
Geographically, residents in North Central New Mexico are the most favorable of solar/wind versus residents in Eastern New Mexico are the most favorable of oil/gas.
Gender and ethnicity don’t really come into play as a differentiator for the solar/wind industry. Male/Female and residents who identify themselves as Hispanic or Anglo are, on average, favorable of the renewable industry.
The oil and gas industry is viewed with greater favorability among males versus females as well as residents who identify themselves as Anglo versus Hispanic.
Post Script – August 26, 2018 – Since the 2018 Garrity Perception Survey was printed, the State of New Mexico announced a 1.2 billion dollar surplus… the result of increased revenues from the oil and gas industry.
More information and analysis of this information is available online at www.garrityperceptionsurvey.com.