Mexican Border States Unite on US Distribution Stand-Off
10 May 2012 - 10:28 by OOSKAnews Correspondent
Mexico, CIUDAD VICTORIA — Governors from Mexican states bordering the United States are banding together to seek "equitable" distribution of water from the Rio Grande, Tamaulipas State Governor Egidio Torre Cantú said last week.
Problems in international distribution have arisen because there used to be a lot of water, and now suddenly there is little, Cantú explained. He said he and the governors of Chihuahua, Coahuila and Nuevo León were working together as a team to achieve an equitable solution for all parties.
The United States recently rejected a request by Mexico for a water loan to supply populations and agriculture on the border. The U.S. Commissioner for the International Boundary and Water Commission (IBWC), Edward Trusina, said the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality had denied the request on the grounds that that it would set a dangerous precedent, an argument also used in response to an early release of water to Mexico in early April.
Approximately 10 million U.S. and Mexican border residents in the area rely on the Rio Grande as their sole source of drinking water, Hoy Tamaulipas newspaper reported.
The Mexican section of the IBWC recently said it will continue with water deliveries as outlined in a 1944 agreement between the two countries, despite the severe drought in northwestern Mexico.
However, Chihuahua State Governor César Duarte Jáquez said his state would halt water deliveries to the United States due to shortages, and because Chihuahua is receiving less water than called for from the United States.
IBWC Mexico Secretary Jesús Luévano said the water would come from six tributaries, one of which, the Rio Conchos, is in Chihuahua state. However, if it has no water, then the water will come from other places, he said.
Mexico’s obligation is to deliver 431.7 million cubic meters per year, but the amounts are measured in five-year cycles, so Mexican states could, for example, deliver nothing this year and double next year, Luévano noted.