Population-Environment Balance, Inc.

March 2024

The Environmental Impacts of Mass Immigration

BALANCE has documented and warned about the many negative impacts of Mass Immigration for many months

And today we provide an excellent summary of the specific negative impacts along the Texas Border, as well as the Negative Impacts of Mass Legal Immigration


"Since President Biden took office, over 8.5 million immigrants have been encountered at the nation’s borders, with an additional estimated 1.8 million ‘gotaways’ evading Customs and Border Protection. The Texas border comprises almost half of the entire U.S.-Mexico border, stretching 1,254 miles across four Mexican states. Millions of immigrants have entered the country through one of Texas’ five Border Patrol sectors. As a result, the Lone Star state’s diverse environment, divided into ten ecoregions, has gradually transformed into a dumping ground for immigrants’ waste.

In 2021, the Bureau of Land Management released data estimating that each immigrant leaves behind 6 to 8 pounds of garbage at the southern border. With illegal immigration on the rise, the levels of environmental degradation are expected to increase. Currently, millions of pounds of garbage litter the southern border, posing a significant threat to wildlife.

Texas ranchers, law enforcement, and lawmakers are exasperated with the state of their border. Aerial drone footage vividly illustrates how uncontrolled illegal immigration can rapidly transform desert landscapes into wastelands strewn with feces, discarded clothing, food, chemicals, drug paraphernalia, and even abandoned vehicles. Currently, migrants breaching Texas’ razor wire have developed a habit of using clothing and trash to pad themselves against the barrier. Once through, they abandon their belongings. Some of these garbage heaps have grown so large that they have earned nicknames, such as “The Mattress,” located just outside of Brownsville, Texas.

Presnall Cage, a rancher from Brooks County, Texas, has had to assign his cowboys to trash duty to address the hundreds of pounds of litter left by migrants. Additionally, Cage grapples with a drug trafficking problem on his ranch. He recounted a recent incident to The Guardian, stating, “A few months ago, while building a fence, we witnessed a group of individuals dropping 250 pounds of marijuana.”

Cattle Rancher Luis Valderrama, based in Eagle Pass, Texas, has witnessed his cows succumb to illness after ingesting trash left by migrants. His ranch, situated along the Rio Grande, is strewn with debris, which he attributes to the Biden administration’s catch-and-release policy. He said, “If immigrants knew that they wouldn’t be released and would instead go to a detention camp, waiting for a hearing, spending six months to a year in a camp, they would likely reconsider coming.”

The footage of Texas’ border environment struck a chord with Army veteran John Rourke. In response, he rallied a small group of individuals and headed west. “As you can see, what they do is they just pile the garbage, the trash on top of the razor wire, concertina wire, and then they just step right over it,” Rourke explains in a video he recorded. Rourke acknowledges that while he may not be able to halt the flow of migrants, he can contribute by addressing the garbage left behind.

Federal lawmakers share the same concerns. In November of last year, Rep. Tom Tiffany (R-WI) introduced H.R. 6208, the Trash Reduction and Suppressing Harm from Environmental Degradation at the Border (TRASHED Border) Act. H.R. 6208 mandates that all federal land management agencies establish procedures to safeguard fauna from any damage linked to illegal border crossings.

Additionally, H.R. 5283, Protecting Our Communities from Failure to Secure the Border Act of 2023, prohibits the use of federal funds for housing migrants on any land under the purview of federal land management agencies. This bill, introduced by Rep. Malliotakis (R-NY), successfully passed the House last year and is currently under consideration by the Senate Committee on Energy and Natural Resources.

If either bill were to be enacted, it would provide protection for federal and tribal lands in Texas, mitigating potential environmental damage due to illegal immigration. Notable areas in southern Texas, such as Big Bend National Park and the Chihuahuan Desert, house biologically rich ecosystems, supporting thousands of animal species. Unfortunately, these lands are exploited by cartels and coyotes as illegal smuggling routes for humans and drugs.

The cultivation of marijuana on these grounds introduces harmful chemicals into the soil, leading to detrimental effects on vegetation, wildlife, and water reservoirs. Consequently, habitat restoration and mitigation efforts have become a significant focus for Park Rangers, which limits their ability to educate guests. Combining conservation initiatives with stricter border enforcement measures will be crucial in alleviating the adverse environmental impacts of illegal immigration.

The nation’s porous borders present not only a national security risk but also an ecological one. Border states like Texas have witnessed firsthand the environmental ramifications of rampant illegal immigration. The Biden administration openly touts the importance of green initiatives, yet fails to include the southern border into the green conversation. All environmentally conscious individuals, regardless of their stance on immigration, should acknowledge that the southern border has turned into a polluted waste site resembling an inland counterpart of the Great Pacific Garbage Patch. Simply put, it is imperative to take action now to reverse the damage inflicted by Biden’s open border."

In fact Biden alone could stop the ongoing Negative Environmental Impact of Illegal Immigration

All he would have to do is reverse the Executive Orders he issued eliminating the Trump policies re. the Border when he Biden came into office

Unfortunately for the environment we may have to wait until this Fall's Election for this to happen


And consider the Negative Environmental Impact of Mass Legal Immigration

- Stabilizing or reducing population size in industrialized nations is essential for achieving sustained Carbon Emissions Reductions and Environmental Protection!!.

Birth rates in industrialized western nations are below replacement level in both the U.S. and Europe. In the United States, the population still grows, however, because of continuing high levels of legal & illegal immigration. Moreover, most immigrants are Economic Migrants and come in order to raise their standard of living, which means raising their personal rate of carbon emissions. The only way to reduce carbon emissions permanently is to limit immigration. The goal must be ZERO NET immigration into the United States i e. reducing Legal from about 1.5 Million /year pre-pandemic to 150,000/year AND stopping virtually all illegal immigration That would allow the USA to stabilize its population

Zero Net Immigration is also essential to curing a host of other environmental problems: Crowding, Housing shortage, Topsoil loss, Endangered species loss Potable water availability, Safety!! etc

--Understanding the pressure of growing populations on the environment’s carrying capacity is essential for developing sustainable solutions. For example, Professor Pimentel et al. (Cornell University) found that for every person added to the United States’ population, one acre of farmland (precious topsoil) or natural habitat (for the critters) was lost, de facto permanently, to development.


ONLY pushing BALANCE's all-categories-included zero Net MORATORIUM on Legal Immigration (which would still allow appx. 150,000 legal immigrants/year) plus closing the Border MAXIMIZES the chances of stopping the Horrendous Alien Amnesty Bill.which is still pending.

Pushing any less restrictive number, as the two National Mass Immigration Management Groups do, will likely result in a Compromise Bill reducing the numbers by just a few hundred thousand at most..... a totally unacceptable result.

indeed, those two National Mass Immigration Management groups refuse to support any Moratorium Bill (like Rep. Gosar's e.g.)

Incredibly, one of these Nonprofits actually advocates "Better Immigration" as its First Priority NOT reduced Immigration!!!!!!!


URGENT: Contact the Biden Administration and your U.S. Representatives and Senators repeatedly and urge them to oppose any Bill which contains ANY Amnesty Bill provisions, or any increase in legal immigration, and to support a zero-net Moratorium Bill and closing the Border

BALANCE is anti-Mass Immigration, Not anti-immigrant

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Population-Environment Balance is a national, non-profit membership organization dedicated to maintaining the quality of life in the United States through population stabilization.

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