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Strength Through Conservation

Investments in this pathway enable the community to permanently protect traditional farmland, preserve water habitat, and maintain the scenic aspects of Taos. Emphasis is on local land-based traditions and culture as well as increasing public awareness of the overall benefit of land preservation.

Environment Impact Stories

Amigos Bravos - “General operating funds like those from TCF are indispensable to the organizations success because they allow us to be flexible enough to repond rapidly to emerging issues, while staying committed to campaigns that we know will demand significant resources over many years, or even decades. Thru the general operations funding, we are able to deal with member concerns as they arise; a vital aspect of protecting the waters of New Mexico. For example, this fall a member living in the town of Taos called our office concerned about a leak in a waste water pipe right over the Rio Fernando. We were able to go to the location, confirm the leak, and then ring it to the attention of the Town of Taos. Due to our pressure, the Town quickly fixed the leak. Without general operating funding, we would not be able to deal with these important problems when they arise”.
2014 Organization Highlight: The Taos County Commission passed new comprehensive land use regulations that included Amigos Bravos’ proposed language for building setbacks from rivers, streams and wetlands; setbacks for hazardous waste storage, confined animal feeding operations, and other high impact activities; and language that requires the use of Low Impact Development (LIC) and Green Infrastructure (GI) in major development projects. After years of work and countless stakeholder meetings and works sessions the County passed (in a vote of 3 to 2) the regulations on June 10th, 2014.

Rivers and Birds – “In the spring of 2014, Rivers & Birds presented a seven-day Watershed Learning Project Program to five fifth-grade classes at Enos Elementary School. 105 students gained a deep understanding of local water issues and water conservation techniques. They practiced the scientific method, use of scientific equipment, graphing, math, oral presentations, writing composition and reading. They contributed environmental community service through the planting of 80 trees at Orilla Verde Recreation Area. Over and over again, we hear from former students and parents that this was one of the most positive and memorable experiences of their public school years.”

Red Willow Agricultural Center (RWC) – “Red Willow ended 2014 with a new team at Red Willow Farm (RWF). These three young adults (ages 20-15) are now fully engaged in operating and developing RWF, and are committed to integrating the farm into the larger Pueblo community – a long standing goal of RWC. Already the team has launched cooperative initiatives with the Pueblo’s health and wellness departments focusing on proving healthful fresh produce grown in the F arm’s greenhouses, as well as selling through the winter Red Willow Farmers Market, another project of RWC. The funding also served 6 high school students; and exposed them to the rapidly growing field of small-scale sustainable/organic agriculture (which is actually an extension of their heritage agriculture, and is culturally compatible).”