The New Mexico Wildlife Federation and Trout Unlimited have released a video tribute to retiring Sen. Jeff Bingaman that explores the Democrat’s commitment to land conservation.
The 8-minute video includes some gorgeous shots of the New Mexico landscape, which I enjoyed sitting at my desk in Washington, D.C.
The video can be viewed here.
Here are some excerpts from a press release that accompanied the video:
“New Mexico is a better place thanks to Senator Bingaman’s tireless and thoughtful efforts to protect public lands,” said Kent Salazar, a lifelong Albuquerque hunter and angler and former president of the New Mexico Wildlife Federation. “His hard work in Congress has improved and protected outdoor activities such as hunting, fishing and hiking for sportsmen like me. Thanks to his efforts, Senator Bingaman has helped ensure that all New Mexicans have the opportunity to enjoy our state’s natural gifts.”
Senator Bingaman has been a consistent champion for the Land and Water Conservation Fund, which has provided more than $243 million to help protect special places throughout the state and has helped ensure access across New Mexico for hunting, fishing and other outdoor activities.
Bingaman also worked to establish the Collaborative Forest Restoration Program, which has funded 166 forest restoration projects in New Mexico since 2001. The Omnibus Public Lands Management Act of 2009, also supported by Senator Bingaman, protected more than 2 million acres of public land across the United States.
“By championing conservation legislation, Bingaman has ensured that our children and grandchildren will be able to enjoy the best public lands in New Mexico as part of their heritage,” said Toner Mitchell, president of the Truchas Chapter of Trout Unlimited.
Despite announcing his retirement in 2011, Senator Bingaman has continued to focus on New Mexico’s public lands for the sake of future generations by calling for two new national monuments in the state.
“Senator Bingaman recognizes the importance of New Mexico’s public lands, and he continues to advocate for their protection,” said Salazar. “As residents of New Mexico, we all benefit from protection of our wild places. Senator Bingaman wants us to continue to enjoy these activities, and that’s why he’s done the hard part of speaking for us in Washington. His conservation legacy in the Land of Enchantment will never fade.”