Cochise, Pima, and Santa Cruz Counties Border Barrier Projects (March 2020)
CBP announces the availability of the Final Environmental Stewardship Plan (ESP) for the border barrier projects in Pima, Santa Cruz, and Cochise counties funded in Fiscal Year 2020 by the Department of Defense pursuant to 10 U.S.C. § 284.
CBP is constructing approximately 74 miles of border barrier projects, including areas where the existing barrier no longer meets the U.S. Border Patrol’s operational needs:
- In Cochise County, CBP will replace approximately 24 miles of existing primary pedestrian barrier with new steel bollard fencing, construct approximately seven (7) miles of new steel bollard fencing, and replace approximately one (1) mile of existing secondary barrier with new steel bollard fencing.
- In Pima County, CBP will replace approximately seven (7) miles of existing primary pedestrian barrier with new steel bollard fencing and construct approximately eight (8) miles of new steel bollard fencing.
- In Santa Cruz County, CBP will construct approximately 25 miles of new steel bollard fencing and replace approximately two (2) miles of existing primary pedestrian barrier and vehicle barrier with new steel bollard fencing.
The projects also include the installation of a linear ground detection system, road construction or refurbishment, and the installation of lighting, which will be supported by grid power and include embedded cameras. The design of the new steel bollard fencing will include 30-foot steel bollards that are approximately 6” x 6” in diameter.
The Secretary of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), pursuant to the authority granted under Section 102(c) of the Illegal Immigration Reform and Immigrant Responsibility Act (IIRIRA), issued an environmental waiver on March 16, 2020 covering the project described in this ESP. Although the Secretary’s waiver means that CBP no longer has legal obligations under the laws included in the waiver, the Secretary has committed DHS to responsible stewardship of the Nation’s valuable natural and cultural resources. CBP strongly supports this objective and remains committed to being a good steward of the environment.
The ESP was developed following environmental and cultural resource surveys of the project areas, coordination and consultation with resource agencies and other interested stakeholders, evaluation of possible impacts, and identification of measures to avoid, minimize, or mitigate impacts. From March to May 2020, CBP sought public input on potential impacts to the environment, culture, and commerce, including potential socioeconomic impacts, and quality of life. The comment period closed May 15, 2020.