Introducing CVNM’s Public Lands & Wildlife Advocate, Greg Peters
Why do you think the work CVNM does is important?
Safeguarding our environment is a responsibility we have to future generations. The accountability work that CVNM does to endure our elected officials support responsible public policy is key to making that happen.
What are you most looking forward to in your work?
Working directly with communities around the state to pursue meaningful conservation policies that will benefit the people, wildlife, and landscapes & waterways of New Mexico. I hope to help in creating resilient landscapes and empowering communities to thrive by having a voice in our democratic process.
What environmental issue are you most passionate about? Why?
The protection of our public lands. Public lands provide us with clean air and water, sustain our fish and wildlife, and offer a place where millions of Americans go every year to experience the beauty of our natural environment. Unfortunately special interests are waging an aggressive campaign to sell off and develop public lands throughout the west. The majority of Americans want to keep public lands in public hands and it is our responsibility to work with our political leaders to reject destructive actions.
What do you love most about New Mexico?
The food and the open lands, easily. New Mexico is a paradise for lovers of spicy food, such as myself. I’ll take my enchiladas christmas-style every time.
I have developed a profound appreciation of the breathtaking beauty of our state. New Mexico offers dramatic and diverse landscapes, from soaring peaks to remote river valleys, red rock wilderness to lush thriving bosques, and I’ll never run out of places to explore.
What do you like to do in your free time?
Get outdoors whenever possible; also hard to turn down some good live music or local craft beer. I am a big believer in Ed Abbey’s quote: “It is not enough to fight for the land; it is even more important to enjoy it. While you can. While it’s still here. So get out there and hunt and fish and mess around with your friends, ramble out yonder and explore the forests, climb the mountains, bag the peaks, run the rivers, breathe deep of that yet sweet and lucid air, sit quietly for a while and contemplate the precious stillness, the lovely, mysterious, and awesome space.”
What book are you reading right now that you would recommend to others?
I recently finished Conservation Refugees: The Hundred-Year Conflict between Global Conservation and Native Peoples. The book takes an investigative approach to report on how modern-era conservation efforts have consistently and intentionally, in many cases, undermined and even destroyed native cultures in the name of saving nature. The author makes a strong argument that when conservationists and native peoples acknowledge the interdependence of biodiversity conservation and cultural survival, they can together create a new and much more effective paradigm for conservation.