Dec 132010

We start this periodic round-ups of news items related to the geography of Mexico City with an update on Mexico City’s population. The preliminary results of the 2010 census show that the Mexico City Metropolitan Area (MCMA) has a population of 20,137,152. This includes the Federal District with its 8,873,017 inhabitants. The Federal District has grown only slowly since 2000, but the State of Mexico, much of which is included in the MCMA, grew five times as quickly (its growth was 1.59%/yr between 2000 and 2010).

New electric Nissan taxis

Several hundred all-electric taxis will soon be circulating in Mexico City. In the second half of 2011, 500 Nissan “Leaf”s (Leading, Environmentally friendly, Affordable, Family cars) will be added to the city’s massive taxi fleet. When fully charged, the Leaf has a range of up to 160km, with zero emissions of CO2. Nissan is reported to be installing recharging stations in locations such as supermarket and restaurant parking lots. The Leaf is expected to go on sale to the public in 2012.

Fines for using non-biodegradable plastic bags

Mexico City authorities have dropped the possibility of  jail time, but kept stiff fines for anyone using plastic bags that are not bio-degradable. Store owners and employees are no longer allowed to give away non-biodegradable plastic bags. Repeat offenders will face fines of up to 9,250 dollars.

Levies on excess garbage

Watch out big business! Mexico City authorities have announced a crack-down on the solid wastes generated by large commercial enterprises, including shopping centers. About 2,000 places will be inspected; they currently pay about 1.2 million dollars (15 million pesos) a year in excess waste fees, but the city believes many are abusing the system, which is based on self-reporting. Mexico City’s solid waste regulations classify anyone disposing of more than 50 kg a day as a “high volume waste generator.” Anyone in this category must pay for every kilogram of waste beyond the basic 50 kilos. The current rates (per kilogram) are 0.50 pesos for construction materials, 1.00 pesos for urban waste, 1.83 pesos for plant-related waste and 2.20 pesos for wastes requiring special handling. Businesses will be audited by city inspectors to ensure that the amount of waste they produce matches what they officially report, and fines will be levied for non-compliance.

The geography of Mexico City is analyzed in chapters 21, 22 and 23 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, order your own copy…

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