GeoCarta Has Moved

Apr 1, 2007

Insufficient Funds Means Indiscernible Border

While the United States makes plans to mark its southern border with a massive fence, it's northern border is becoming overgrown and imperceivable due to a lack of funds for upkeep, the Boston Globe reports.

The International Boundary Commission, a joint project of the U.S. and Canada, is obligated by treaty to keep the 5,525-mile border cleared and prominently marked. However, hundreds of miles of the frontier are fading into obscurity, due to a lack of funding. The two governments are supposed to split the cost of boundary maintenance. Canada is chipping in $2 million a year. The U.S. has been chipping in around $1.4 million.

With the commission falling behind in its efforts to keep the mandated 20-foot-wide swath clearly marked, our neighbors to the north have sent a note, politely asking the U.S. to increase it's contribution to the effort. A State Department spokesman was noncommittal, telling the Globe, "We are looking at the budget situation closely."