Nov 062010

The IMCO report on the competitiveness of Mexico’s states, which we briefly described in an earlier post, includes a significant section devoted to the sustainable management of Mexico’s natural environment.

IMCO’s sustainable management factor incorporates 14 distinct variables. For almost every variable, the average of all 32 state values for that variable has improved between 2006 and 2008. Only 1 of the 14 variables has worsened, and three have remained unchanged.

photo of garbage

Sadly, not all garbage finds its way into regulated landfills...

The variable that worsened was the proportion of energy derived from “clean” sources, which fell from 18.9% of the total energy produced in 2006 to 17.6% in 2008.

The three variables that remained unchanged were:

  • the surface experiencing drought or aridity
  • the area where soil degradation is a problem
  • and the number of species considered endangered.

The following 10 variables all showed a significant improvement between 2006 and 2008:

  • the annual rate of reforestation, up from 1.1% to 1.7%
  • the number of “environmental emergencies”, down from 11.3 to 10.9
  • the total area formally protected (biosphere reserves, national parks, etc), which increased slightly
  • the value of agricultural production compared to groundwater consumed for agriculture, which also increased slightly
  • the over-exploitation of aquifers, which fell by more than 10%
  • the volume of sewage (wastewater) that is treated, which rose from 859 liters/sec per million inhabitants to 962 liters/sec
  • carbon dioxide emissions which fell to 0.3 parts/million
  • the percentage of all waste entering regulated landfills, which increased from 58% of all waste to 62%
  • a fall in the total generation hazardous wastes
  • an increase in the number of companies certified as “clean”

In addition, the gap between the top-performing state for this factor (Aguascalientes) and the bottom-performing states (Chiapas and Oaxaca) has closed significantly.

Mexico’s environmental trends and issues are examined in chapter 30 of Geo-Mexico: the geography and dynamics of modern Mexico. Ask your library to buy a copy of this handy reference guide to all aspects of Mexico’s geography today! Better yet, purchase your own copy…


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