International Cooperation

EPA Collaboration with Mexico

EPA works with our Mexican neighbors on the U.S.-Mexico Environmental Program, a collaboration between the United States and Mexico to improve the environment and protect the health of the nearly 12 million people living along the border. The bi-national program focuses on cleaning the air, providing safe drinking water, reducing the risk of exposure to hazardous waste, and ensuring emergency preparedness along the U.S.-Mexico border.
The Border 2012 program closed in 2012 after successfully meeting and exceeding program goals and objectives. Along the border, more than 12 million scrap tires were removed and properly disposed of, more than 54,000 homes were connected to safe-drinking water system, and more than 540,000 homes were connected to wastewater systems.
Border 2020 is building on the success of Border 2012 by maintaining the bottom-up approach to program design, and by committing to strategic priorities to achieve an ambitious set of goals and objectives.

Explore our work

2012 National Coordinator Meeting: US Ambasador to Mexico Earl Anthony Wayne (L), SEMARNAT Secretary Juan Elvira Quesada, and Former EPA Administrator Jackson (R).

The U.S-Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the Mexican Environment and Natural Resources Ministry (SEMARNAT) Border 2020 National Coordinators will participate in the first biennial National Coordinators Meeting (NCM) under the Border 2020 U.S.-Mexico Environmental Program in El Paso, Texas, September 21-23, 2015.  This meeting will provide an opportunity for the National Coordinators to showcase Border 2020 accomplishments, as well as reexamine the goals, objectives, and operations of the program. During this meeting, the coordinators also plan to complete action plans for the upcoming two years. 

Following the meeting, EPA will participate in the Children's Environmental U.S.-MX Border Symposium, which aims to increase knowledge of how early childhood exposures can affect children’s health and to facilitate networking among the healthcare community, promotoras, and the public. 

The Border 2020 framework agreement for continued environmental cooperation along the U.S- Mexico border was signed by former EPA Administrator Lisa P. Jackson and Mexican Secretary for the Environment Juan Elvira Quesada in Tijuana on August 8, 2012. It is the latest environmental initiative implemented under the 1983 La Paz Agreement. Building on the Border 2012 Environmental Program, it emphasizes regional, bottom-up approaches for decision making, priority setting, and project implementation to address the environmental and public health problems in the border region.  Border 2020 seeks to reduce pollution in water, air, and on land, reduce exposure to chemicals from accidental releases or terrorism, and improve environmental stewardship.

Additional Resources About Environment and the Mexico-U.S. Border

  • International Boundary and Water Commission (IBWC)Exit The U.S. and Mexico have cooperated on their shared border environment for over a hundred years. Much of this cooperation took place under the auspices of the IBWC, a U.S.-Mexico international organization with a presence in both countries. The IBWC administers several large water cleanup projects, including those in Tijuana and Nuevo Laredo.
  • Border Environment Cooperation Commission (BECC)Exit BECC identifies, develops, and certifies environmental infrastructure projects in the the U.S.-Mexico border area.
  • North American Development Bank (NADBank)Exit NADBank participates in the financing of BECC-certified projects.
  • SEMARNATExit Mexico's Ministry of Environment and Natural Resources. SEMARNAT is EPA's federal counterpart in the U.S.-Mexico Environmental Program.


For additional information about EPA's programs with Mexico, contact:
Lisa Almodovar
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
Office of International and Tribal Affairs (2650R)
1200 Pennsylvania Ave., NW
Washington, DC 20460