Newly Created Post Reflects Region's Growing Role in National Energy Issues

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (September 6, 2006) - Ned Farquhar, who served most recently as New Mexico Gov. Bill Richardson's senior advisor on energy and environment policy, has joined the staff of the Natural Resources Defense Council, where he will become the Energy and Climate Advocate for nine states in the Interior West. Based in Albuquerque, he will be promoting cleaner, smarter energy choices across a region that is playing an increasingly important role in shaping the nation's energy strategies.

"Energy and climate policy are central to national security, the future of the global environment, and U.S. economic growth," said Farquhar. "As a lifelong conservationist I have always been impressed by NRDC's ability to get things done, and I am excited to join the team handling a critical portfolio of western issues."

He also worked as Richardson's liaison to the Western Governors' Association, which adopted a strong new clean energy proposal put forward by Richardson and California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger. Richardson, a former member of NRDC's Board of Trustees, established a strong state and national record on alternative energy, global warming, public lands management, and air and water quality.

Farquhar will be joining NRDC's growing team of Western state energy experts. His new responsibilities include New Mexico, Colorado, Arizona, Utah, Montana, Idaho, Nevada, Wyoming, and Alaska.

"These states supply a huge amount of energy to the rest of the nation in the form of wind, coal, oil and gas," said Frances Beinecke, president of NRDC. "They are tied especially closely to large west coast markets like California and Washington. Their energy and climate policies will have a huge impact on U.S. global warming emissions and energy technology."

Farquhar earlier worked as western lands program director at the David & Lucile Packard Foundation; executive director of both the Vermont Natural Resources Council and 1000 Friends of New Mexico; special assistant to the Alaska Commissioner of Natural Resources; and staff director of the Alaska House Resources Committee. He has taught at both the University of New Mexico and the University of Vermont.

"One of the biggest issues facing the West is how to develop its fossil resources in balance with energy efficiency and renewable energy," said Farquhar. "Our aim is help develop and implement balanced approaches that create economic return through efficiency, combine carbon-clean coal with wind and solar development, and protect unique Western landscapes."