16 Colo. J. Int'l Envtl. L. & Pol'y 189 (2005)
The Elephant under the Border: An Argument for a New, Comprehensive Treaty for the Transboundary Waters and Aquifers of the United States and Mexico

handle is hein.journals/colenvlp16 and id is 197 raw text is: The Elephant Under the Border:
An Argument for a New,
Comprehensive Treaty for the
Transboundary Waters and
Aquifers of the United States and
Mexico
Robert C. Gavrell*
I. INTRODUCTION
The Sonoran and Chihuahuan deserts of the North American
southwest stretch in a virtually unbroken arc along the United States-
Mexico border from California in the west to mid-Texas in the east.
These deserts are very hot, and very dry. Because of their unique
climates and harsh conditions, these deserts, like all deserts, rank among
the most fragile ecosystems on the planet.1 Also, like most deserts, the
Sonoran and Chihuahuan deserts have always been sparsely populated,
and it is in part for that reason that the international border was drawn in
their inhospitable midst.2
In the heart of the Sonoran desert, straddling this invisible line
between two nations, sit the twin cities of Nogales, Arizona and Nogales,
. Robert C. Gavrell is a class of 2005 candidate for the Juris Doctor degree at the
University of Colorado School of Law. He received his B.A. in Anthropology and
History from Yale University in 1997, and has spent his intervening years working with
nonprofit environmental and land-use groups and directing a green business in Denver,
Colorado. The author would like to thank all of his fellow classmates who aided in the
editorial process and his wife, Stacey, for her patience and encouragement.
1. Desert USA, The North American Deserts, at
http://www.desertusa.com/glossary.html (last visited Oct. 30, 2004).
2. See Vivienne Bennett & Lawrence A. Herzog, U.S.-Mexico Borderland Water
Conflicts andInstitutional Change: A Commentary, 40 NAT. RESOURCES J. 973, 975
(2000).

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