Transboundary Pollution Update

The International Boundary and Water Commission recently hosted a public session which was followed by a Binational Core Group meeting. The meeting was composed of representatives from the Commission and federal, state, and local stakeholders including the Chamber. A recording of the public session is available here and includes presentations on a sediment basin feasibility study by the Commission and the “Binational Water Quality Study of the Tijuana River and Adjacent Canyons and Drains” prepared under Minute 320. The report includes recommendations to control industrial wastewater discharges in Tijuana, increase resources and assistance for wastewater collection and treatment, and continue joint water quality monitoring and field inspections to ensure prompt response to wastewater flows.

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency will hold a public meeting tomorrow, November 20 at 10:00 a.m. to share an evaluation of infrastructure projects that support a comprehensive solution to transboundary pollution issues in our region, in accordance with the new trilateral agreement, USMCA. You can join the meeting by clicking here or calling 1(628)246-1234 (Conference ID: 649 311 295#).

The Chamber partnered with the State of Baja to host an International Business Affairs Forum to share the state’s work to clean the Tijuana River channel and upcoming projects to address transboundary polluted flows. The forum featured Technical Undersecretary Rigoberto Laborin, who spoke on behalf of the State of Baja’s Water Management, Sanitation, and Protection Agency (SEPROA), and Imperial Beach Mayor Serge Dedina. SEPROA’s work includes the implementation and maintenance of water infrastructure in Tijuana and a 60-day project that removed over 300,000 cubic meters of sediment and solid waste from the Tijuana River channel. These upgrades, along with increased coordination with U.S. authorities, are estimated to reduce the volume of northbound transboundary flows during dry weather by 70 percent and have already resulted in fewer northbound flows reported. Attendees also heard from Chamber member 4 Walls International about public and private collaboration on cross-border solutions for solid waste and plastics.