WASHINGTON, Aug. 8 (UPI) -- U.S. officials have announced an agreement between Mexico and the United States to address environmental issues along the border between the two countries.
The Border 2020 agreement will work to address high priority environmental and public health problems in the 2,000-mile border region, a release from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency reported Wednesday.
"Addressing the environmental issues along the border has long been a priority we share with our colleagues in Mexico, because we know that environmental degradation, pollution, and the diseases they trigger don't stop at the national boundaries," EPA Administrator Lisa P. Jackson said.
The program, which follows a Border 2012 environmental agreement ending this year, will work to reduce pollution in water, air, and on land, reduce exposure to chemicals from accidental releases or terrorism, and improve environmental stewardship, officials said.
The U.S.-Mexico border region is home to over 14 million people and is one of the busiest cross-border trade regions in the world, the EPA said.
The Border 2020 program will protect the environment and public health for 10 states on both sides of the 2,000-mile border, including 26 U.S. tribes and seven groups of Mexican indigenous people, officials said.