Skip to comments.Crews modify border wall to cut across last free-flowing river in Southern Arizona
Posted on 10/23/2020 7:33:46 PM PDT by 11th_VA
PALOMINAS, Arizona (Border Report) The majestic canopy of towering cottonwood trees can be seen for miles, like a green ribbon trimming the dry semi-desert grasslands of southern Arizona. The snaking treeline marks where the San Pedro River meanders through the Huachuca Mountain range that sits on either side of the U.S.-Mexico border.
The trees can grow to 100 feet tall and are a welcome source of shade for the millions of migrating birds that flock to the river each year. For some, it is the only water they will find for hundreds of miles. The San Pedro River is one of only two major rivers that flow north from Mexico into the United States and is one of the last undammed rivers in the Southwest.
But an unprecedented drought the worst since 1924 has struck Cochise County, Arizona. And in many places, the river that starts 10 miles south of the international boundary line in Sonora, Mexico, is just a riverbed of cool sandy silt to the feet.
That has made for ideal conditions for construction workers who are rapidly building a border wall here. And that has angered local environmentalists who worry that this massive structure will block the river flow when waters resume normal levels, especially when sudden torrential downfalls and flooding occur during the monsoon that runs from June to September throughout Arizona...
(Excerpt) Read more at google.com ...
I understand skepticism on how those gates would be open to allow things to flow through, but...
If it pisses of environmentalists who “held a prayer ceremony on the dry riverbed as the noise of construction crews hummed in the background. They hung up prayer flags marked with handwritten words such as, I am the sacred words of the earth It is lovely indeed Song of earth spirit. then...
I am all for it. If it makes them gnash their teeth in frustration and anger at the enemies of Gaia, even better.
Go, go go!!
Full speed ahead!
What? The best argument that loony woman can come up with is ‘that birds don’t fly that high’?
Even if there was some horrible outcome to the 30 people protesting... This affects millions of Americans. What right do they have to try to stop it?
The environmentalists should have tried to work with the feds. The illegal border-crossers did equivalent or greater damage. Who knows? If Congress had cooperated they might have been able to put in animal crossing points with remotely operated closure gates to stop illegal crossings. Maybe next year...for now they gets what they gets...
Looks like they poured concrete all the way across the River bed before erecting the Gates.
Is there ANYTHING that DOESN’T “anger environmentalists”?
The gates are opened before the monsoons start in AZ and are left open for several months. We just closed our gates a couple of weeks ago even though we had very little rain in AZ this year. No reason to worry that these gates will block the flow of water we have them all over the place in my AOR and they work fine.
I don’t see a problem with that per se, with water being historically low due to drought.
I admit I am not an engineer. My bigger concern than with wildlife is how can they be sure those gates will open reliably when they need them to because a lot of flood borne debris is piling up against them...
Additionally, they are using two types. In the riverbed itself they are using larger double gates, while in the higher floodplain (where only the worst peak floods might overflow) they are installing a series of smaller single swing gates. Those in the riverbed seem to deliberately leave gaps for animal migration (no doubt that will be persistently surveilled and alarmed). You can see the two types side by side here:
To the East and West sides of the floodgates, now stand mighty 30 foot bollards. Another major upgrade, is the Patrol road bridge, that will give Border Patrol rapid mobility to both sides of the River, during monsoon flooding.
I have no doubt that this longstanding major corridor for illegal traffic, will also get a large dose of surveillance, sensors and alarms. Infiltrators have long loved to follow the river for the shade, concealment and water, as well as to not get lost.
The patrol road bridge spans are starting to go in now as well:
I am guessing that technology will bristle underneath the bridge, and probably atop light poles as well.
(with apologies to the brilliant cartoonist!)
So is it ‘free flowing’ or just a dry ‘riverbed of cool sandy silt’?
Unimpeded flash floods during monsoon season isn’t the natural state of the San Pedro River anyway, where beavers were once far more numerous than they are today.
(see also the very readable “Eager” by Ben Goldfarb)
As 98charlie stated, the gates are opened at the start of monsoon season (around the 4th of July), and closed at the end (around Labor Day).
These new double swing gates in the riverbed are particularly large - like you drive a truck through them. Whole trees might just pass through.
It will be interesting to see how this new design performs, but the improved road, improved clearance and that bridge will will make it easier to patrol. I believe they are getting grid powered lights, so all manner of technology could be powered as well.
Advantage, Border Patrol.
There was an earthquake around 1887 that caused the San Pedro River to settle underground. The area those whackos are standing at looks exactly the same as it did in 89 to 97 when I lived near there.
Kate Scott: Some birds don’t fly high enough to get over the wall.
The 10th moon of Jupiter???
Looks like something new.
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