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New Report Assesses Water Resources Along U.S.-Mexico Border

Release Date: 03/08/2005
Contact Information:

Contact: Dave Ryan, 202-564-7827 /

(03/08/05) Those who decide the fate of the U.S.-Mexico border region's scarce water resources must seize every opportunity to think and act strategically. That's the conclusion reached by the Good Neighbor Environmental Board in its latest report released today: Water Resources Management on the U.S.-Mexico Border. The board, an independent advisory committee managed by EPA, advises the U.S. president and congress on environmental conditions in the border region.

The report reveals that limited supplies, pockets of poverty, a combination of jurisdictional gaps and overlaps, and many other challenging issues all conspire to make water resources management in this region difficult.

To better manage the region's water resources, the report recommends three key actions:

Institutions - Clarify current responsibilities held by U.S.-Mexico border-region institutions responsible for managing water resources. Identify jurisdictional gaps and overlaps, interpret missions to reflect changing circumstances, and leverage opportunities for stronger cross-institutional collaboration.
Data - Develop and sign formal U.S.-Mexico border-region water resources data agreements. Such agreements should support the collection, analysis and sharing of compatible data across a wide range of uses so that border-region water resources can be more effectively managed.
Strategic Planning - Implement a 5-year U.S.-Mexico border-region integrated water resources planning process. Using a stakeholder-driven watershed approach, address immediate concerns in critical areas while pursuing collaborative longer-term strategies.

Good Neighbor Environmental Board members include representatives from U.S. border states consisting of senior officials in business and industry, state and local government, federal agencies, ranching and grazing, non-profit groups, tribes, and the academic community. Each year, they meet several times in different communities along the U.S. side of the border. Members also have extensive networks across the border that include families, friends and professional contacts.

To obtain a copy of the new report, call 1-800-490-9198 and request the document by number, EPA 130-R-05-001. To view an electronic copy of the report or to obtain more information about the Board, go to its web site at: .