Sleepy New Mexico Towns See Oil Boom

Tuesday, May 13, 2014

An oil rig in the Permian Basin which spans East Texas and Western New Mexico. (Zorin09/Wikimedia Commons)

North Dakota's Bakken Shale is often in the news for reviving U.S. domestic oil production, but New Mexico is having its own oil boom, too. Eastern New Mexico is home to some of the most productive regions of the Permian Basin, which spans across West Texas and into New Mexico. Last year, the oil industry brought in 17 percent of the state's total revenue. 

Once-sleepy towns like Carlsbad and Hobbs are rapidly transforming into stereotypical boomtowns: There are more people, more crime, and more expensive housing. And for one of the most water-stressed regions of the state, the oil boom is taking its toll environmentally as well. 

Monica Ortiz Uribe, a senior field correspondent at Fronteras, weighs in on New Mexico's growing oil industry.


Monica Ortiz Uribe

Produced by:

Allie Ferguson


T.J. Raphael

Comments [1]

Sari Broner from Berkeley, CA

Dear Mr. Hockenberry,

I am an old-time fan from your days at ToN and am very glad you are back on the radio with a new and fine contribution to the public discourse.

I was really struck by Monica Ortiz Uribe's reporting on the forces of water vs. gas in New Mexico. It isn't easy to communicate complicated technical information to those of us who don't have science backgrounds. She did it wonderfully! I listen to lots of environmental reporting because I feel the issue is so important. How rare to find reporting that portrays a situation clearly and succinctly, yet with a light hand. Thanks so much.

May. 13 2014 04:10 PM

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