Environmental Impact of U.S.-Mexico Border Fence

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By Hannah Legatzke. The Wall. Three major pieces of legislation for the construction of the wall: Operation Hold the Line (Texas), Operation Gatekeeper (California) and Operation Safeguard (Arizona). ID: 136847 Download Presentation

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Environmental Impact of U.S.-Mexico Border Fence




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Presentations text content in Environmental Impact of U.S.-Mexico Border Fence

Slide1

Environmental Impact of U.S.-Mexico Border Fence

By Hannah Legatzke

Slide2

The Wall

Three major pieces of legislation for the construction of the wall: Operation Hold the Line (Texas), Operation Gatekeeper (California) and Operation Safeguard (Arizona)There is over 600 miles of fencing between the U.S. and Mexico

Slide3

Slide4

A Sensitive Environment

The border wall cuts across national parks, forests, wildlife refuges, and wilderness areas, including:

Organ

Pipe National

Monument

Buenos

Aires National Wildlife

Refuge

Coronado

National

Forest

Big

Bend National

Park

T

ijuana

River National Estuarine Research

Reserve

Slide5

How the Wall Has Environmental Impact

Infringes wildlife habitat and blocks migratory routesCauses flooding, erosion, and sedimentation problemsWall can act as a damConstruction of the wall requires building new roadsCan cause the introduction of invasive speciesChannels human migration to more remote areas

Plant matter gets caught in the fence which can prevent water from getting through and causes floods

Litter left behind by migrants in environmentally sensitive regions

Slide6

Impact on Water Flows

The wall affects the flow of water in the desert environment of the Southwest:

The wall causes changes in the pattern of sedimentation, and might cause the San Pedro River, one of the last free-flowing rivers in the Southwest to shift

Wall caused accelerated erosion at Organ Pipe Cactus National Monument

A barrier in an underground drainage tunnel in Nogales caused flooding in Mexico that killed two people and damaged $8 million worth of property and infrastructure

Isolates the wetlands of Rio Bosque Wetlands Park

Slide7

Slide8

How the Wall Impacts Animals

Fragments habitat

Places additional ecological stress on areas that have already lost much of their native vegetation

Artificial lighting affects behavior of

nocturnal animals

confuses migratory birds, causing them to collide

Animals may be killed by vehicles on roads along the border

Separates populations

The ocelot, of which fewer than 50 live in the U.S., is separated from the larger and more genetically diverse population in Mexico

Large animals like coyotes and bobcats do not fit through the fence

Slide9

Endangered Species

Many threatened and endangered species live in the borderlands4000 plant species are native to the borderlandsAffects the habitat of 85 endangered species of plants and animalsBorder Patrol estimates that 39 species have been affected in ArizonaSpecies most at risk:

Arroyo toad

California red-legged

f

rog

Black-spotted newt

Pacific pond turtle

Jaguarundi

Slide10

More Species at Risk

Gray wolvesJaguarBighorn SheepPronghorn Antelope

Slide11

Laws and the Wall

The Department of Homeland Security waived 36 laws for the construction of the wall including the Endangered Species Act and National Environment Policy Act (NEPA)

Waiving NEPA meant that less study was done on the potential environmental impact of the wall

Slide12

The Debate

Supporters of the wall argue that it is necessary to stop illegal immigration and drug trafficking

Critiques of the wall argue that the wall does not stop illegal immigration and drug trafficking and/ or it is too costly in terms of economic cost, environmental impact, and human rights ignored because of the wall

The Problem

T

he wall’s success at stopping illegal immigration will only be known after it is constructed.

Slide13

Meanwhile…

The wall will continue to negatively impact the environment

The wall is immensely costly

The government spent $2.4 billion dollars on 670 miles of fence between 2006 and 2009 (~3.58 million per

mile)

The wall

funnels migrants away from urban areas to more remote areas of the desert where there are increased risks of exposure and hundreds of people die every year trying to cross the border

Slide14

Questions?

Slide15

Sources

Arroyo

Toad

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image

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.

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Deer Stopped by Border Wall. Digital image. ** NO BORDER WALL **.

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Facts | Big Cat Rescue. Digital image. Big Cat Rescue. Big Cat Rescue Corporation,

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May 2013. Web. 27 Feb. 2015. <http://bigcatrescue.org/jaguarundi-facts/>.

Nafis

, Gary. Black-spotted Newt -

WildEarth

Guardians. Digital

image.WildEarth

Guardians.

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.,

n.d.

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www.wildearthguardians.org/site/PageServer?pagename=species_amphibians_black_spotted_newt

>.

New Border Walls Designed to Flood Texas Towns - The Texas Observer. Digital image. The

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Observer.

N.p

., 11 July 2012. Web. 27 Feb. 2015.

<

http://www.texasobserver.org/new-border-walls-designed-to-flood-texas-towns/>.

News: Border Wall Could Block Wildlife :

DNews

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Perf

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N.p

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>.

Operation Gatekeeper." Operation Gatekeeper.

N.p

.,

n.d.

Web. 27 Feb. 2015. <http://www.justice.gov/oig/special/9807/gkp01.htm>.

Slide16

Pike, John. "Homeland Security." US-Mexico Border Fence / Great Wall of Mexico.

N.p

., 2015. W

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Pike, John. "Military." Operation Gatekeeper / Operation Hold-the-Line / Operation Safeguard.

N.p

., 2015. Web. 27 Feb. 2015. <http://www.globalsecurity.org/military/ops/gatekeeper.htm>.

Roig-Franzia

, Manuel. "Mexico Calls U.S. Border Fence Severe Threat to

Environment

." Washington Post. The Washington Post, 16 Nov. 2007. Web. 27 Feb.

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"Damage Caused by the Border Wall." Sierra Club,

n.d.

Web. 27 Feb. 2015. <

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/sites/

content.sierraclub.org.activistnetwork

/files/teams/documents/DAMAGE_C AUSED_BY_BORDER_WALL_FACTSHEET_J2%5B1%5D.pdf>.

Schlyer

, Krista. PHOTOS: Animals Stopped in Their Tracks by Border

Wall?Digital

image

. National Geographic. National Geographic Society, 28 Oct. 2010. Web. 28 Feb.

2015

. <http://

news.nationalgeographic.com/news/2009/04/photogalleries/us-mexico-border-fence-wildlife/photo7.html

>.

"Sierra Club Border Policy Campaign." Arizona Sierra Club Border Pages, Solutions.

N.p

.,

n.d.

Web

. 27 Feb. 2015. <http://arizona.sierraclub.org/border/solution.asp>.

Western Pond Turtle. Digital image. Wikipedia. Wikimedia Foundation, 16 Jan. 2015. Web. 28

Feb

. 2015. <http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Western_pond_turtle>.


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