America’s southern border zone is a sensitive, remarkable, and largely unrecognized place where militarization and construction of a border wall are wreaking havoc on public lands, and the rich animal, plant, and human communities.
It is a place where species from temperate and tropical zones meet. Rare birds inhabit the region and endangered mammals frequently travel between northern Mexico and the U.S. in search of suitable habitat, food, and mates. The borderlands provide a bridge that ensures genetic diversity as well as migratory corridors for these and other species to move north as climate change impacts the region.
- Walls, fences, and barriers fragment sensitive ecosystems, disrupt animal migration patterns, cause flooding, and divide communities and tribal nations.
- Using the REAL ID Act, Trump has waived 38 laws to rush wall construction. These laws include the National Environmental Policy Act, Endangered Species Act, and laws that protect indigenous cultural sites and graves.
- The border region is host to a diverse array of threatened, endangered and rare species, including the jaguar (the world’s largest feline), ocelot, Mexican gray wolf, arroyo toad, Peninsular bighorn sheep, Sonoran pronghorn, cactus ferruginous pygmy owl, and Quino checkerspot butterfly.
- 93 vulnerable species would be affected by wall construction and related infrastructure. It would degrade and destroy critical habitat for 25 species.
- Border communities don’t want the wall. Thirty-six states, cities and counties passed resolutions opposing the border wall.
- The majority of Americans (over 60%) oppose more miles of border wall.
Broads at the Border
Arizona Broadband leaders gathered to document conditions at the border wall. They found ecological devastation of the land, plants, and wildlife. Follow their journey with this presentation they made to the Grand Canyon Chapter of the Sierra Club. View the video here.
This story map, produced by Wildlands Network was developed through remote sensing and extensive on-the-ground fieldwork to assess completed sections and the progress of sections that were not completed. Arizona Broads conducted on-the-ground surveys through portions of Arizona to contribute to the map. View the map here.
- Border Wall Enviromental Impacts
- Impacts of Border Security on Wildlife/Habitat
- Types of Border Walls
- Damage Caused by Border Wall
- Real ID Waiver Fact Sheet
- Further Reading
How to Take Action
Call, write, or meet with Members of Congress. Educate them on the border wall issue and ask them to:
- Rescind the Department of Homeland Security Waiver Authority for Border Barrier Construction (H.R .1232 in House, S. 254 in Senate).
- Prohibit construction of border barriers in wildlife and wilderness areas (S. 264).
- Attend town halls, hearings, and candidate forums, give the facts, and ask what they’re going to do to stop the destruction.
Write Letters to the Editor and Op-Eds to your local newspapers to educate your community. Speak from your personal experience. HERE is an example letter.
Outreach & Education
- Invite a speaker to your community to talk about the wall.
- Host a webinar with border experts (we can help!).
- Host a film to educate your community such as The River & the Wall and Ay Mariposa! .
- Share border videos and audio stories found HERE.
- Find, work with, and educate unlikely allies who may not be aware of environmental concerns of a border wall: recreation groups, birders, hunters and anglers, religious groups, etc.
- Watch the Broad’s social media sites (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram) for border wall posts and share. Use hashtags: #NoBorderWall #NoWall.