Mitigating Cross-Border Air Pollution: The Power of A Network
Thu, 08 Oct 2009
Anthony M. Cresswell, G. Brian Burke, and Celene Navarrete
This report describes how a diverse mix of individuals and organizations representing two countries, three states, multiple levels of government, private industry, academia, and the public were able to successfully organize and then respond to improve air quality along the U.S. and Mexican border. The focal point of this study is the Joint Advisory Committee for the Improvement of Air Quality in the Ciudad Juárez, Chihuahua/El Paso, Texas/Doña Ana County, New Mexico Air Basin (the JAC). It was through the JAC that this diverse mix of key actors were able to navigate the complex web of political, cultural, legal, and economic factors that posed challenges to developing a unified response to this shared air quality problem. The JAC’s strategies and methods were powerfully shaped by the characteristics of the physical setting and the organizational and political context. Many of these strategies and methods have considerable promise for other air shed regions, but must be tailored to the unique physical and social situations of each one.