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San Diego Receives Federal Funding to Fight Mexican Sewage

San Diego has just received substantial federal funding from the EPA to address a chronic problem: raw sewage coming from Tijuana Mexico. That sewage has been migrating over the border for many years, wreaking havoc on various Southern California beach communities. The American beaches were often subjected to raw sewage that smelled badly.

For many years Tijuana allowed raw sewage to discharge into the Pacific Ocean. Visitors could smell the raw sewage as they crossed a bridge from San Diego into Mexico. From there it often migrated into California causing many beach shutdowns. After enduring this for years, there is some reason to be hopeful. First the US government is stepping in with funding to help address this problem. And the Mexican government is taking some measures to reduce the raw sewage releases.

For many years we had similar problems in New Jersey. Many sewer systems did not properly function and many of us can recall all of the beach closings in this state because of “floatables” coming from malfunctioning local sewer systems.

Our state laws required sizable upgrades to sewage treatment facilities that addressed many of these problems. Yet still, we have some older combined stormwater – sewer systems that occasionally discharge raw sewage into public water bodies following heavy rain storms.

Now, fortunately, it appears that the Mexican government is becoming committed to upgrades as well. Upgrades that will be healthful to Mexican residents and that will also make American beaches safer, healthier and quite clearly more inviting.

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