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Environmental Progress in US-Mexico Border Region

Release Date: 04/27/2006
Contact Information: Suzanne Ackerman, (202) 564-4355 / ackerman.suzanne@epa.gov; Contacto en español: Lina Younes (202) 564-9924 / younes.lina@epa.gov

(04/27/06) U.S. and Mexican officials met today to report significant progress in improving the border area's environmental health at the National Coordinators' Meeting of the Border 2012 Program. Accomplishments to date include:

· Implementation of the first air quality improvement plan in Mexico, an economically sustainable plan to virtually eliminate used tire piles along the U.S.-Mexico border by 2012;
· Removal of 2000 tons of hazardous waste to protect a local, economically disadvantaged residential community;
· Improved drinking water and wastewater infrastructure systems for 1.5 million residents, and;
· Design of emergency response plans to better protect border residents.

The U.S.-Mexico Border 2012 program is a 10-year bi-national cooperative plan that protects public health and the environment along the 2,000-mile border region, home to approximately 12 million inhabitants. Official from the federal, state, local and border tribes all participated at today's meeting.

The officials also agreed on priorities for environmental collaboration for 2007. Included among the priorities for 2007 are increasing access to and improving safe drinking water and wastewater infrastructure, retrofitting of diesel buses and trucks and improving availability of low sulfur diesel fuel on the border, and adoption of a bi-national scrap tire strategy.

More information on the EPA's U.S.-Mexico Border 2012 Program: epa.gov/usmexicoborder/intro.htm