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US-Mexico Border Sewage Lawsuits On Hold

Photo by Erik Anderson

Pollution warning sign in Imperial Beach, a region that has suffered from nearly constant sewage flows from Mexico since last November. Picture taken on May 5, 2020.

The groups suing the federal government over cross border sewage flows, are putting their legal action on hold.

The lawsuits took aim at the International Boundary and Water Commission asking them to make sure the water that moved through their system was clean enough to meet Federal Clean Water Act standards.

Listen to this story by Erik Anderson.

Several South Bay cities, the County of San Diego, the San Diego Port District and state regulators all want the federal agency to stop the sewage tainted flows that routinely foul the ocean.

RELATED: Border Sewage Projects Secure Funding, But Progress Will Be Slow

That legal action is now on hold while the Environmental Protection Agency moves forward with plans to help build the pollution control systems that will capture and clean 90% of the polluted flows.

Imperial Beach Mayor Serge Dedina said the lawsuits are being set aside so the plaintiffs can work with the federal government to find a solution.

The EPA has $300 million in funding, from the United States-Mexico- Canada Agreement, for border pollution problems and the agency recently promised to spend most of the money in San Diego

This is the second time the lawsuits were paused.

The plaintiffs agreed to a 90-day stay from November to February, while talks about a solution were ongoing. Cross-Border flows got markedly worse during that time and the lawsuit was reinstated.


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Photo of Erik Anderson

Erik Anderson
Environment Reporter

opening quote marksclosing quote marksI focus on the environment and all the implications that a changing or challenging environment has for life in Southern California. That includes climate change, endangered species, habitat, urbanization, pollution and many other topics.

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