Who Are We?

The New Mexico Solar Energy Association (NMSEA) is an educational 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, dedicated to promoting solar energy and related sustainable practices. Founded in 1972, NMSEA was one of the first organizations in the country to seek methods and ideas on how to use renewable energy, how small villages could live sustainably, and how to empower people through education about these issues. We are currently an all-volunteer organization. Our membership includes a diverse group of citizens including interested advocates of solar energy, architects, building contractors, engineers, educators, and planners specializing in renewable energy and sustainability.

Kids check out the Sunchaser at Puesta Del Sol Elementary

New Mexico Solar Energy Association
Revised Vision and Mission
adopted by NMSEA Board of Directors 1/16/10


We envision a thriving, biodiverse earth, with civilization powered by clean, renewable and sustainable energy from the sun.


We promote clean, renewable energy and sustainability in New Mexico through education, empowerment, collaboration and advocacy.

Mission (expanded)

We promote clean, renewable energy and sustainability in New Mexico by:

  • Educating and motivating people to make informed decisions regarding energy conservation, efficiency, choices and use
  • Empowering people with focused strategies and opportunities to take action
  • Collaborating with people and organizations to leverage resources and achieve mutual objectives
  • Advocating political action aligned with our purpose

History of the Organization

NMSEA was founded in 1972 when Peter van Dresser, Steve Baer and Keith Haggard held the first Life Technics Conference.

In the 1970's NMSEA grew in membership, began publishing an educational paper, "The SunPaper", and continued to hold an annual conference.

In 1976 this vibrant group established NMSEA as a non-profit corporation.

From 1977 to 1982 NMSEA had staff and outreach offices and library with the help of federal funding. After 1983 government support and public interest for renewable energy faded quickly.

NMSEA stayed active by continuing to hold the Annual Life Technics Conference at Ghost Ranch, but did not have the funds to continue publishing a newsletter nor hold workshops.

In 1994 "The New Sunpaper" blossomed as a quarterly, and now is being published bimonthly.

In the last five years NMSEA has increased its membership five fold, and has raised funds for educational programs through grant writing and hosting events. NMSEA has hosted a national level technical solar conference in each decade, and has hosted a solar home tour every fall for four continuous years.

We are a volunteer based organization working individually out of our homes.

Education of children has been our primary focus the past five years. We have visited hundreds of classrooms and several summer camps, built the SunChaser2 (a mobile solar classroom), reestablished the High School Passive Solar Competition, and have developed a renewable energy curriculum.

NMSEA Brochure