TUCSON, Ariz. (April 30, 2021) — Wildlands Network applauds the Biden Administration’s decision to cancel all U.S.-Mexico border projects using funding from the U.S. Department of Defense.
Since its construction began under the Trump administration, more than 450 miles of border wall were erected, bisecting a rich natural landscape, and causing detrimental harm to native plants and animals through the process. Wildlands Network has been documenting the impacts of the border wall and border security operations, using the data to provide recommendations for protecting and restoring affected wildlife and habitat.
“The damage done to our national parks, wildlife refuges and wilderness areas over the last four years has been a devastating blow to our nation’s natural heritage and all its inhabitants,” said Wildlands Network’s Borderlands Program Coordinator Myles Traphagen. “This decision by President Biden should serve to reorient U.S. policy toward supporting binational efforts that will secure a vibrant future for the Borderlands.”
The Borderlands from California to Texas have always been integral to facilitating continental connectivity of wildlife, and we are encouraged that this decision will reinvigorate efforts to protect and restore the binational movement of species like the coues deer, Mexican gray wolf, Sonoran pronghorn, jaguar and black bear.
Although there is still some uncertainty around the status of projects funded through congressional appropriations, we look forward to working with the Administration to identify and prioritize areas for remediation and ensure adequate funding is allocated to restore these ecologically sensitive areas that support wildlife throughout the region.
Borderlands Program Coordinator
About Wildlands Network
Since 1991, Wildlands Network been committed to reconnecting, restoring and rewilding North America so that life—in all its diversity—can thrive. Our work is founded in science, driven byfieldwork and furthered through strategic policy and partnerships. We envision a North America where nature is undivided, and where people coexist in harmony with our native plants and animals.