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U.S. Geological Survey Initiates Monitoring Program on the U.S. /Mexico Border
Southwest Region, December 14, 2009
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Ecological Services and National Wildlife Refuge Staff from Arizona, New Mexico, and Texas participated in a workshop with USGS to initiate the development of a pilot monitoring plan and protocol for determining ecological effects of border infrastructure along the U.S./Mexico border.  The pilot monitoring will occur in Arizona, likely at the San Pedro River National Conservation Area, the Buenos Aires National Wildlife Refuge, and the Organ Pipe Cactus National Monument.  The workshop started with a videoconference with Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords, Deanna Archuleta (Deputy Assistant Secretary for Water and Science), Lori Faeth (Deputy Director for Intergovenrmental Operations at DOI), Ted Lovett (Associate Director, Office of Legislative Affairs at DHS), Bob Barnes (TNC's Senior Policy Advisor on DOD and Border Issues), and Liz Berry (Legislative Director for Congresswoman Giffords).  The videoconference was designed as a listening session for the public and NGOs to provide their input on the monitoring goals and objectives.  The workshop also included a field trip to the border to see erosion and debris buildup at existing infrastructure, and it included a day-long session with Customs and Border Protection staff, federal land managers, and Ecological Services staff to determine key elements to be monitored.  USGS spent two additional days with a Scientific Writing Team to develop the pilot monitoring plan, which is due in April 2010.  There is currently no funding identified to implement the pilot monitoring plan.

Contact Info: Nick Carrillo, (602) 242-0210x203, nick_carrillo@fws.gov



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