Geography Education
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Supporting geography educators everywhere with current digital resources.
Curated by Seth Dixon
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Big maq attack

Big maq attack | Geography Education | Scoop.it

"A 50-year-old export industry that provides millions of jobs has to reinvent itself quickly to stay competitive."

Seth Dixon's insight:

A maquiladora is a term that often used to describe a factory in Northern Mexico that enjoys special tax breaks for eport-driven production. Northern Mexico is an ideal location for this type of industry because 1) access to American markets is high and 2) labor costs are relatively low.  The Mexican Maquiladoras can no longer compete in a ‘race to the bottom’ for the lowest skill jobs, but they can produce higher-end goods and compete with China to supply more innovative consumer goods.  Labor costs in China are on the rise, making Mexico able to compete more effectively with them on the open market.  The total value of Mexican maquiladoras exports has grown by more than 50% in the last 5 years; more foreign corporations are investing money into Mexico.  Some of the more innovative and aggressive maquiladoras are attempting to become more involved in the research and development end of production; essentially they want to start competing with European and American companies on the lucrative high-end of the commodity chain instead of fighting for the scraps at the bottom. 


TagsMexicomanufacturing, industry, economic, globalization, technology.

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John Slifko's curator insight, January 13, 2014 4:02 PM

In addition to commerce what are the democratic and civil society institutions and social mvoements involved, or not involved, in this transiation now apparently underway?  

BrianCaldwell7's curator insight, April 5, 8:18 AM

A maquiladora is a term that often used to describe a factory in Northern Mexico that enjoys special tax breaks for eport-driven production. Northern Mexico is an ideal location for this type of industry because 1) access to American markets is high and 2) labor costs are relatively low.  The Mexican Maquiladoras can no longer compete in a ‘race to the bottom’ for the lowest skill jobs, but they can produce higher-end goods and compete with China to supply more innovative consumer goods.  Labor costs in China are on the rise, making Mexico able to compete more effectively with them on the open market.  The total value of Mexican maquiladoras exports has grown by more than 50% in the last 5 years; more foreign corporations are investing money into Mexico.  Some of the more innovative and aggressive maquiladoras are attempting to become more involved in the research and development end of production; essentially they want to start competing with European and American companies on the lucrative high-end of the commodity chain instead of fighting for the scraps at the bottom. 


Tags: Mexico, manufacturing, industry, economic, globalization, technology.

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Twin Cities

"Landsat has seen a lot in its day. In one spot of desert, where the Rio Grande marks the border between the United States and Mexico, the satellite program captured hundreds of images of fields turning green with the season, new developments expanding from El Paso, Texas, and clouds moving over the neighboring mountains."

Seth Dixon's insight:

Since I have family on both sides of this line, I've always be fascinated by the U.S.-Mexico border as a cultural, political and economic phenomenon.  Ciudad Juárez/El Paso are examples of 'twin cities' that form along the border and in many ways are one metropolitan area that has been brought together by the interactions available at the border; at the same time this regions is highly divided by spatial governance policies.  Click here to download high resolution images El Paso/Ciudad Juárez

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Hector Alonzo's curator insight, October 14, 2014 11:09 PM

Seeing both U.S and Mexican land going from mostly desert to significant expansion throughout the years is amazing. It shows that while they are two different countries, they both developed simultaneously together, much like the videos title suggests, as 'Twin Cities'

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Popocatépetl

Popocatépetl | Geography Education | Scoop.it
Seth Dixon's insight:

This image is from June 11, 2013, but if you click on the link you will see an image of Popocatépetl that is refreshed every minute.  This massive volcano looms over Mexico City and plays a key role in the mythology of the city.  The images are taken from a relatively new station in Tochimilco (clouds or intense weather might occasionally limit the visibility of the volcano).


Tags: Mexico, physical.

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Brett Sinica's curator insight, September 29, 2013 1:11 PM

Among active volcanos in the world, this would be an extremly devastating one if it were to explode.  Less than 50 miles from Mexico City, which is home to more than 20 million people in its entirety could be of threat.  Just this year in July, there was steam and ash released which cancelled flights in and out of Mexico City and Toluca.  That's a mere fraction of what could happen if this volcano had a full-blown explosion.  On a lighter note, on days with good weather, this volcano is quite a spectacle of nearby cities and is the second highest peak in Mexico.

Giselle Figueroa's curator insight, October 31, 2014 11:39 PM

This is a active volcano, the last eruption was on 2013 (a year ago), It is the second highest volcano in Mexico. Popocatépetl means "montaña que humea" (wet mountain). I love everything that have to be with nature, Volcano are a very interesting creation of nature. 

Edgar Manasseh Jr.'s curator insight, February 11, 2015 11:01 PM

Amazing volcano located in pueblo Mexico, located in the eastern half of Mexico and is one of the most active volcanoes in Mexico. its been around for awhile and just recently in 94 got active its a very important part of Mexico and is very interesting to look at from your own perspective.

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California-Mexico Border: Dreams of a Transnational Metropolis

California-Mexico Border: Dreams of a Transnational Metropolis | Geography Education | Scoop.it

"A basic truth about the cultural geography of the California border [is this]—two very different city-building traditions come crashing into each other at one of the most contentious international boundary lines on the planet. In this collision, in the shocking contrast of landscapes, lies one critical ingredient of the border’s place identity."

Seth Dixon's insight:

As a geographer native to the San Diego region (with family on both sides of the border), I found this article very compelling.  Relations across the border are economic, cultural and political in nature, and the merger of those varied interests have led to an uneven history of both cooperation and separation.  Herzog analyses three distinct factors that have shape the landscape of the California-Mexico border zone: urbanization, NAFTA, and global interruptions (9/11).    


Tags: borders, AAG, political, landscape, California, unit 4 political, Mexico.

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Ann-Laure Liéval's curator insight, January 27, 2013 6:29 AM

Les territoires de la mondialisation: les frontières. Une frontière qui se ferme et pourtant, une urbanisation continue mais contrastée. 

Emma Lafleur's curator insight, February 7, 2013 5:45 PM

It is interesting to see how this border has transformed from a fence to a guideline and back over time. Researchers of these two cities can learn a lot about how the events of one country affect the other country, such as in the case of 9/11. This place is also a great place to study culture because it is here where researchers can study a melding of two cultures in action. Overall, this area gives great insight into how two bordering countries affect each other politically, economically, socially, and culturally.

Al Picozzi's curator insight, September 23, 2013 9:46 AM

Also have heard stories of Tijuana...you know what happens there stays there.  Much like the Kennedy's in the US, Tijuana got its initial fame and wealth from the alcohol trade when the US started prohibition in the 1920, albeit the Kennedy family did it illegally with bootlegging.  Interesting contrast of building styles and cutures.  The space on the map makes this area what it is.  Without San Diego, Tijuana wouldn't be the same and San Diego wouldn't be the same without Tijuana.  This area also shows a contrast with the Canadian border.  Little or no fences on that border, but here, there are two in some spots, an old onecand a new post 9/11 one.  Why here then are there fences?  Culture too different?  Is it for racial reasons?  Is it just the drug trade and cartels that are all over the area the reason?  Is it US drug policy that makes the fence necessary?  Is it the US policy on immigration that the the fence a necessity?  Is it the worse economic conditions in Mexico or the violence that is forcing the people to run across the border?  Lots of questions and right now it looks like nobody has any real answers.   

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How Wal-Mart Used Payoffs to Get Its Way in Mexico

How Wal-Mart Used Payoffs to Get Its Way in Mexico | Geography Education | Scoop.it
Wal-Mart de Mexico was an aggressive and creative corrupter, offering large payoffs to get what the law otherwise prohibited, an examination by The New York Times found.
Seth Dixon's insight:

Wal-Mart officials worked hard to ensure that zoning regulations were changed so that they could bring a store to a coveted location.  They built a Wal-Mart in the shadows of arguably Mexico's most important world heritage site--the pyramids of Teotihuacán.  This investigative report uncovers the illegal steps that Wal-Mart took to force through their agenda. 


Questions to Ponder: Why would Wal-Mart be so keen on this particular location?  Why would some in Mexico oppose this project so fiercely?  Would Wal-Mart behave in such a manner in the United States?       


Tags: Mexico, industry, planning, culture, location, place.

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James Hobson's curator insight, September 23, 2014 1:17 PM

(Mexico topic 9)

It is troubling to discover how bribery still continues to promote special interests at the expense of others and their own interests. Though other articles I have commented on discuss the improving economy and politics of Mexico, this one clearly shows an area that needs much more attention.

   Despite this, all of the fuss (though justifiable) may be slightly over-exaggerated in my opinion. Just look at the photo above: the WalMart is at least somewhat set back from the pyramids, BUT the smoke and smog from other industries fills the air right up to and all around the pyramids themselves. I think this is just as much, if not more, of an injustice to the cultural site. While one can choose whether or not to enter a store, it is impossible not to breathe in the polluted air and have one's view limited while visiting such a place.

   Lastly, although bribery is certainly something I deeply frown upon, perhaps it is slightly less "wrong" than it would be in other countries like the US. Since Mexico's government and its departments have a reputation (at least from what I've heard) of being corrupted, perhaps the only way to build a store is to offer a bribe. It would be interesting to see if this was the case with other store locations throughout Mexico.

Kendra King's curator insight, February 2, 2015 8:50 PM

Clearly it is horrible what Walmart did, but what about everyone else in this scenario? Walmart was able to damage public history and jeopardize the traffic safety of Mexico because they figured out the going price for those concepts was: a couple mayors, some INAH official, and an Urban Operations official (see article for in-depth explanations of how each was bought off). All of whom bypassed their duty to the public. See I am not surprised by the corporation’s actions. The corporation is acting for its own self-interest like many corporations have historically done. In fact, compared to the East India Company of 1800 (which had its own standing army) this is tame (see below article). I would prefer companies not to operate as such, however a company will act in such a manner so long as it is permitted. Deterring such actions falls on the fault of the officials who were so easily bought off.

 

Yet, whose job is it to police a corporation? At one point, the article mentioned that when the Mexican investigation found nothing wrong with Walmart they, “chided protesters for failing to present any specific proof.” I’m sorry, but it isn’t the protesters job to go out and find proof. That is the job of an investigator, whom I might add didn’t do a good job given the evidence the New York Times was able to amass. Unfortunately (or maybe fortunately) for Mexico, they probably aren’t that apt at forensic banking because they are a largely agrarian society who only relatively recently is being introduced to the corporate world. Looks like there is a whole new specialty that Mexico will need to learn soon due to globalization. I say Mexico needs to learn this also because it is mainly their job to monitor their people. I understand that this is an American company so on some level they will have to monitor their people. However, majority of the people involved in this were in Mexico. Thus, Mexico will need to deal with their side of justice and also start developing environmentally usefully laws under the new corporate rule (i.e. ones that protect historical artifacts even when the “proper” licenses have been secured.)

 

I am not looking to just pick on Mexico’s corporation problems either because we all know the United States has their fair share of corporate issues. In fact, I think it is safe to say that Walmart could have bought off people in the United States too. Think of all the tainted deals that occurred in the subprime mortgage crisis. We aren’t even sure because no one actually went after them! At least in the case of Walmart there is an investigation going on again. It will be interesting to see what the end result is though. Most times, it isn’t near what a company should get. In the United States some are literally able to get away with murder. Just look at GM's latest court dealings. I hope Mexico can do a better job than the United States when it comes to handling corporate investigations in the future.  

 

* http://www.economist.com/node/21541753

Bob Beaven's curator insight, February 5, 2015 2:32 PM

This article shows the "forced globalization" of Mexico.  I thought it was interesting how Walmart de Mexico would use such cutthroat means to build a "intermediate sized store".  Yet the Walmart officials in Mexico realized that being not too far from a major tourist attraction would help business.  There were many groups who tried to stop it from happening, but they could not stop the store from being built.  This article shows how corporate Globalization is ruthless, and it doesn't care about disobeying laws.  This article also shows that if a company is big enough, it can, in effect do whatever it pleases.  In the United States on the other hand, this type of bribery could never have happened. 

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Interactive Education Comic/App

A graphic novel to entertain, excite, and educate…and with an experimental interactive comic app as well! Plaid power to the people!


Looking to teach geography and world affairs with a flair?  The Plaid Avenger has a new interactive comic book to teach about the geography of Mexico and the geopolitical impacts of the the drug wars in that country.  If you've received some value from his work in the past, please consider supporting this endeavor which is pushing the boundaries of educational technologies and platforms.  


Tags: Mexico, geography education, edtech, narcotics.

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Mass Sacrifice Found Near Aztec Temple

Mass Sacrifice Found Near Aztec Temple | Geography Education | Scoop.it

Below street level in Mexico City, archaeologists have found a jumble of bones dating to the 1480s.


In the 1970s, construction workers unearthed numerous archaeological finds as the subway was being constructed.  The Mexican government decided to clear the several block of old colonial buildings to reveal the Templo Mayor, the ancient Aztec religious center.  Not coincidentally, the Spaniards built their religious center in the same place.  During the colonial era, the indigenous residents who spoke Spanish in Mexico City still referred to this portion of the city as la pirámide.  Today more finds such as this one are continuing to help us piece together the past of this immensely rich, multi-layered place filled with symbolic value. 


Tags: Mexico, LatinAmerica, historical, images, National Geographic, colonialism, place and culture.

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Hector Alonzo's curator insight, October 26, 2014 10:00 PM

While the Aztec' civilization has been gone for a very long time, there are still traces of it resurfacing today. With the uncovering of the bones, it shows that the Aztec temple was very much in the heart of Mexico City has still has more secrets to uncover

Bob Beaven's curator insight, February 5, 2015 2:39 PM

This article shows just how varied the cultural landscape of Mexico is.  Unlike the Native populations in the US, the Aztecs had a large, flourishing civilization that was described by the first conquistadors "to match the glory of any major city in Europe."  When the Spanish eventually conquered the Aztec Civilization, they built right on top of the ruins of the old Aztec capital of Tenochtitlan.  The way that Mexico City is layered right on top of the old Aztec city, means that many human remains and ancient buildings are buried right below the modern city.  This is what makes Mexico City different than any city in the United States or Canada, the cities in these two countries were not built over massive cities that pre-dated them.

Jared Medeiros's curator insight, February 11, 2015 10:07 PM

This seems to be quite a large sacrifice that was discovered. And while it may be just that, it seems more like a mass execution, possibly performed by the Spanish when they battled with the Aztecs and put at the foot near the Aztec temple to send a message that their God could not save them.  If it is a sacrifice, its a pretty large one.

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Mexico's Drug Wars - Photo Essays

Mexico's Drug Wars - Photo Essays | Geography Education | Scoop.it
Photographer Anthony Suau documents the surging influence of the drug cartels in Northern Mexico and the efforts by police to maintain law and order...

 

The issus connected to drug trafficking are intense in Mexico for a variety of geogaphic factors.  This is not something we typically see as a part of the the new global economy, but it certainly has been connected to the processes of globalization.  Visit this topic on scoop.it for more sources on the Mexican Drug Trade.


Via Roland Trudeau Jr.
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Lauren Stahowiak's curator insight, February 4, 2014 12:37 PM

Anthony Suau photographs images that tell a thousand words of the drug wars and its influences. Drug trafficking is a major issue in Mexico and due to this, govenment has increased its actions, prostitution has increased as well as the death rate. It is one thing to read about these incidents, but it is another to see them. Military search through bags and pull people thrown into canals out.

Jessica Rieman's curator insight, February 4, 2014 12:39 PM

This picture depicts the drug trade and how well it is or isnt regulated. Many officials are nervous about the drug trafficing and do not feel confident in enforcing the laws against drug cartel and drug trafficing. This photography depicts the efforts ofd the police to maintain order.

Amanda Morgan's curator insight, September 28, 2014 5:40 PM

This photo essay shows how much of an issue drug trafficking is in Mexico.  Not only is it more work and stress for their police and military but for average families as well. So many deaths are results of drug trafficking that it is an ordinary everyday occurrence. The food for guns program shows that no matter how poor or desperate they are they still have weapons.

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Mapping Mexico's gang violence

Mapping Mexico's gang violence | Geography Education | Scoop.it
Voters are counting on the next president to find a solution to the country's alarming rise in organised crime.

 

This interactive features shows temporal and spatial data on drug-related deaths in Mexico since 2007.  Also connected are profiles of the presidential candidates of the three major political parties (PRI, PAN and PRD) and with their platform on drugs and ways to curtail the accompanying violence.  Mexico's presidents can only hold office for one term, but it is a six-year term...2012 isn't just about Obama and Romney. 

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James Hobson's curator insight, September 23, 2014 12:46 PM

(Mexico topic 7)

A picture (specifically a map, in this case) is absolutely worth a thousand words, and can invoke many more. Over 10,000 deaths in Chihuahua but less than 20 in Baja California Sur, for example - though Chihuahua's population is greater, the percentages based upon population are still way out of proportions. For some perspective, If Rhode Island were in Chihuahua's situation, that would mean over 3000 cartel-related deaths every year in the state (~0.3% of the total population).

Jason Schneider's curator insight, February 3, 2015 3:35 PM

I just finished reading a scoop about violence in Mexico getting worse and I discovered that violence in Mexico comes from its poor economy, drugs and dead-end lives. Chihuahua, the largest state in Mexico has the most number of violent deaths in Mexico with over 10,000 deaths. The smallest state in Mexico, Tlaxcala has only 13 deaths due to gang violence. YOu would think that the size matters in the number of deaths due to gang violence but that is not the case. Sinaloa is smaller than Sonora and Sinaloa's death rate due to gang violence is four times higher than Sonora's. Also, Baja California Sur is slightly smaller than Baja California Norte is Baja California Norte's death rate due to gang violence is 105 times higher than Baja California Sur's death rate.

Adam Deneault's curator insight, December 6, 2015 5:56 PM

After reading this article and playing along with the interactive map, which I think is a very well used resource, I can see that gang violence is a major issue in the country of Mexico, especially as stated in the article, areas near US borders and places with ports. For example, a place near a US border is Chihuahua with 10,134 deaths! In Chihuahua located at Ciudad Juarez, near El Paso is where the conflict between two cartels is focused. It is also scary to know that there is that much violence going on right next to our own territory. 

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1964 Mexican postage stamp features unusual map projection

1964 Mexican postage stamp features unusual map projection | Geography Education | Scoop.it
One of the more beautiful, unusual and useful map projections ever devised was created by cartographer Bernard Cahill.

 

As a collector of Mexican stamps, researcher in Mexican heritage and enthusiast of all things geography, these cartographically themed stamp is a treasure.  

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Why more Mexicans are staying home

Tiny Tamaula is the new face of rural Mexico: Villagers are home again as the illegal immigration boom drops to net zero. Full story on CSMonitor.com: http:/...

 

Contrary to popular opinion, illegal immigration from Mexico to the United States is not really a problem in 2012.  As conditions on both sides of the border have changed, this gives a glimpse into the life choices of Mexican villagers.  For more on this issue see the complete article at: http://www.csmonitor.com/World/Americas/2012/0408/Home-again-in-Mexico-Illegal-immigration-hits-net-zero ;

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Cam E's curator insight, February 4, 2014 11:55 AM

I enjoy stories like this, because it demonstrates people willing to fight for their home. Many interesting ideas lie behind stories such as this one, but what I find especially intriguing is the dynamics of money in relation to these small rural villages. Money and "income" drives our current economic positions, but there are some places which were left behind and have none of the jobs we in the first world would traditionally think of. They had to either subside off their own products through farming, or trade their livelyhood for a small amount of money. Put simply, money is necessary for a so called "modern" existence, but not necessary for survival. These villagers are working for their own future in their home country now though, while it may not be necessarily profitable in the short term, it will pay off for their children in the long term.

James Hobson's curator insight, September 23, 2014 11:29 AM

(Mexico topic 1)
"Things are not good in the United States. There is not a lot of work and Mexicans like to keep busy." I was surprised by this this comment which sums up one of the main reasons why many Mexican immigrants are returning to Mexico. This implies that as the American economy has worsened, Mexico's must be improving (at least by comparison). This completely supports the concept of Mexico evolving into a "semi-core" country.
   Additionally, I hope this quote will help to shed some truth onto the negative lazy stereotype many Americans associate with immigrating Mexicans.

Adam Deneault's curator insight, December 6, 2015 6:39 PM

With a little help from the video, it is clear now, to understand why many Mexican folks are actually not leaving their country for the US. It said in the video that there is not a lot of work in the US and Mexicans like to keep busy. Also, a lot of Mexicans are finding opportunity right in their own country where there once was no opportunity. Electricity reaches the house, they have paved roads and updated pipes. They will need to rely on us for fuel. It is also nice for them to know that they do not need to leave their families behind in Mexico while they go to the US, they can have the satisfaction of working in local fields and seeing family when they get home at the end of the day. 

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Nogales, Mexico: A Few Steps, and a Whole World Away

Nogales, Mexico: A Few Steps, and a Whole World Away | Geography Education | Scoop.it
A writer who has crossed many borders finds the one between Nogales, Ariz., and Mexico to be the oddest frontier of all.

 

Given that most of the articles concerning the border these days reflect on the policing of the border, the illegal flow of people, drugs or guns across the border, or the violence in the borderlands, this is refreshing change of pace.  Paul Theroux focused on the cultural connections that form, not in spite of the border, but because of the border and the cultural vibrance of Nogales, Sonora. 

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Sheyna Vargas's comment, September 19, 2012 1:21 PM
Everyone is always talking and writing about Mexicans crossing the border, taking jobs, and smuggling drugs into the US. It’s nice to find an article showing their humility and kindness to others. These people in this town just over the border are trying to improve it by adding security, school programs, and keeping their town clean.

I think there’s so much that can be learned from this article. As Theroux states, “the neighborhoods just across the fence are not representative of the town at large, which is a lesson in how to know another country: stay longer, travel deeper, overcome timidity.” So, while, yes, there are dangerous areas in Mexico, not every town is the same. Not all Mexicans are dangerous drug dealers who want to steal your job.
Jessica Martel's curator insight, February 7, 2013 5:45 PM

cool

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Mexican Cartels not just a Border Problem

Police in Mexico arrested a man they say is one of the country's largest methamphetamine producers. The arrest comes as Mexican drug gangs are moving aggressively to try to dominate methamphetamine markets not just in the U.S.

 

The drug issue is often described as a border problem and though that one little line was the only space necessary for understanding the problems.  This podcast highlights how many places are a part of the networks at play in this complex economic geography that causes political, demographic and cultural strife on both sides of the border.  

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Jessica Rieman's curator insight, February 4, 2014 12:54 PM

Mexican Drug cartels used to be just a border problem that needed to be addressed and now it;s not the only problem that the United States has to worry about. Mexican cartels have transfered into the economic demography and contributed into the border problem as a whole and have changed the US control.  

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Walled World

Walled World | Geography Education | Scoop.it
We chart the routes of, and reasons for, the barriers which are once again dividing populations
Seth Dixon's insight:

This is an in-depth, multi-media interactive that explores the political, economic and cultural implications of borders that are heavily fortified or militarized (I found this too late to be included in the "best posts of 2013" list, but this will be the first to include for 2014).  Not all of these borders are political; in Brazil it explores the walls that separate different socioeconomic groups and in Northern Ireland they look at walls dividing religious groups.  The interactive examines various borders including U.S./Mexico, Morocco, Syria, India/Bangladesh, Brazil, Israel, Greece/Turkey, Northern Ireland, North/South Korea and Spain The overarching questions are these: why are we building new walls to divide us?  What are the impacts of these barriers?

  

Tags: borders, political, territoriality, unit 4 political.

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Lauren Sellers's curator insight, May 29, 2014 1:06 AM

We looked at this map in class its really interesting nd weird to see all the dividing walls in the world and to discover ones youve never seen before.

Tanya Townsend's curator insight, October 12, 2015 9:53 PM

The video attached to this article reminded me made me think "racism". It is not Americas first time targeting one cultural group and antagonizing them. We did it to the Indians, Jews, at one time we denied Chinese immigrants the right to enter the country or become a citizen. The projection of walls in my opinion only creates more room for crime. I would love to research what benefits its had. I think the world is lacking the understand that people are people .period. This segregation and division is so unnecessary and creates wars, tension, hostility, and divide.

 

Gene Gagne's curator insight, December 2, 2015 9:41 AM

the social impact is we do not get to mingle with people of different culture, religion, ethnicity. Economically businesses do not grow at least on the small business side. There is no chance of growth. what about population once again if you stay with in a section divided by walls then the population stays within. a society would have to stay above the 2.06 fertility rate to keep their population stable.

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For Migrants, New Land of Opportunity Is Mexico

For Migrants, New Land of Opportunity Is Mexico | Geography Education | Scoop.it

"With Europe sputtering and China costly, the 'stars are aligning' for Mexico as broad changes in the global economy create new dynamics of migration."

Seth Dixon's insight:

I’ve posted earlier about the end of cheap China; the rising cost of doing business in China coupled with the higher transportation costs to get goods to North American and European markets have made manufacturing in Mexican much more competitive on the global market.  Many investors are turning to Mexico as an emerging land of opportunity and Mexico is now a destination for migrants.  This is still a new pattern:  only 1 percent of the country is foreign-born compared to the 13 percent that you would see in the United States.  Mexican migration to the United States has stabilized; about as many Mexicans have moved to the U.S. (2005-2010) as those that have moved south of the border.


Tags: Mexico, industry, location, place, migration.

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Aleena Reyes's curator insight, April 8, 2015 9:21 PM

Even though this article is now three years old, it is refreshing to see that Mexico is really making their mark on the global market. The Global North seems to be coming to a stalemate while "up and coming countries" like Mexico are becoming the perfect place for people to begin their businesses and have a fresh start on life. I can understand though, how it was mentioned on the third page of the article, that some locals may feel that foreigners, European especially, may be receiving some type of special treatment due to past colonialism. However, these entrepreneurs are shaping the economy of Mexico. This is Mexico's chance to advance in the world and increase its GDP. Young, aspiring moguls all seems to feel the same way about their homelands, "Europe, dying; Mexico, coming to life. The United States, closed and materialistic; Mexico, open and creative" and Diego Quemada-Diez, a Spanish director, was quoted in the article, "Europe feels spiritually dead and so does the United States...[y]ou end up wanting something else".  And apparently, Mexico has that "something else".

 

Chris Costa's curator insight, September 21, 2015 10:25 AM

Again, I would be interested in seeing how these statistics would change if they were to factor in illegal immigration from Mexico into the United States, but the data remains promising. Mexico has the potential to be an economic powerhouse, and hopefully will utilize this potential sooner rather than later. Although rampant corruption remains in the nation's politics and reinforcement agencies, a strong Mexican economy will ultimately deescalate the violence by stripping the cartels of their strongest allure- well-paying employment for uneducated young men. A stronger Mexican economy will also undoubtedly help the US in terms of trade, as well as reducing the rate of cartel-related violence in the southern regions of the nation. With so many Americans today rallying around Trump's racially-charged rants on Mexican immigration, it brings a smile to my face that we are currently sending more Americans to take Mexican jobs than they are sending our way. The hypocrisy of these politicians and their policies are laughable. 

BrianCaldwell7's curator insight, April 5, 8:20 AM

I’ve posted earlier about the end of cheap China; the rising cost of doing business in China coupled with the higher transportation costs to get goods to North American and European markets have made manufacturing in Mexican much more competitive on the global market.  Many investors are turning to Mexico as an emerging land of opportunity and Mexico is now a destination for migrants.  This is still a new pattern:  only 1 percent of the country is foreign-born compared to the 13 percent that you would see in the United States.  Mexican migration to the United States has stabilized; about as many Mexicans have moved to the U.S. (2005-2010) as those that have moved south of the border.


Tags: Mexico, industry, location, place, migration.

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A quieter drug war in Mexico, but no less deadly

A quieter drug war in Mexico, but no less deadly | Geography Education | Scoop.it
Months have gone by since the last of the grisly mass killings that have marked the conflict’s darkest moments.
Seth Dixon's insight:

Cartels are still fighting each other, but they are no longer taunting the military and the police by doing it in such a blatantly public manner.  Drug-related homicides are stable (and alarmingly high) at 12,000 per year but less in the border cities and more in the northern interior.  The cartels are trying to avoid engaging the military, seeing that "spectacular acts of violence only bring more pressure to bear on them."  


Tags: Mexiconarcotics, conflict.

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Louis Mazza's curator insight, February 6, 2015 3:35 PM

Prior to a few months ago the drug cartels in Mexico were running rampant. It was no longer an under the ropes operation like pre-2000. The Cartels were massacring, beheading people and performing great acts of violence such as the slaughter of 72 migrants near the border, or the dumping of 50 human torsos on the highway. The military responded by parading captured cartel members through the streets and calling in more and more back-up troops. Mexico is extremely dangerous when this activity goes on. That has recently all come to a public halt. The perceived danger/violence rate in Mexico has been dropping but at the same time the number of drug related deaths has not. It seems that the cartels have smartened up and understand now that the great acts of violence only brings more pressure onto them. Now the cartel tries to avoid the military as much as possible as the added backup and highway patrol’s give the drug smugglers issues.

Brian Wilk's curator insight, March 28, 2015 2:45 PM

Looks like President Enrique Nieto has shifted tactics in Mexico's fight against the drug trade. When he won election from Felipe Calderon he changed the way he portrayed his country. No more would he parade alleged drug dealers and overlords before they went to trial. This would only infuriate the drug lords and they sought revenge by seeking out police to either kill, or bribe, further deteriorating the uneasy truce between the government and the drug trade. By keeping this off the news and promoting Mexico's other needs such as trade, education reform, and reduction of poverty.

The mass killings have been kept mostly out of the spotlight and the body count is still the same, but Nieto can now fight this fight largely out of the public's eye. The drug related killings have moved to the northern territories away from cameras and the public. This should afford him opportunity to focus on this problem and keep the public from thinking Armageddon is around the corner.

Kevin Nguyen's curator insight, October 7, 2015 1:34 PM

It is interesting to know that the drug cartel violent s has slowly been decreasing from public views. Violence from the war on drugs on the Mexico border with the United States has been a huge issue for a while post 9/11. They are finally trying to avoid conflicts with the government, specifically the military and police  because it will only bring more pressure to them. It is a smart thing to keep violence of the streets but out in places where there the cartels can draw less attention, murders and trafficking still exist. It is important to understand that a huge problem like this does not just vanished completely, but changes overtime and shift to other quiet places.  

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What we can learn from Mexico

What we can learn from Mexico | Geography Education | Scoop.it

Earlier this month, the president told a newspaper the solution to partisanship is politics and more politics.

Seth Dixon's insight:

Quick facts about the "new" Mexico:

  • Mexico has more international trade deals (44) than any other country.  
  • Mexico exports more manufactured products than all the other countries in Latin America combined
  • Mexico’s GDP is expected to grow by nearly 4% this year, twice as fast as Brazil (and the USA)
  • Mexico's average income (PPP) is higher than China, India or Brazil (Mexico could be a BRIC country if it didn't ruin the acronym).

Does that help in explaining why Mexicans aren't leaving to go to the United States anymore?  In fact, more Mexicans are leaving the United States than entering in a clear example of changing push and pull factors. 

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Kendra King's curator insight, February 2, 2015 8:37 PM

The title of this article was what enticed me as I was hoping to find an actual answer. However, based on this article alone, I don’t actually think there is much the United States can learn from Mexico about politics or economics.

 

This author failed to mention that a difference in political systems could also attribute to the new Mexican leader’s ability to obtain “endorsements from across the spectrum.”  Mexico recently had an election. The new President this article is praising is part of a party that controlled the land for 70+ years until Nieto's predecessor. His predecessor messed up with the cartels so badly that Nieto was elected back into office. Given the amount of support Nieto had going into office, it doesn't seem so challenging to negotiate with opposing parties. Plus, I doubt the opposing parts are as unreasonable as some of the United States members of congress, like the Tea Party.   

 

I also see little to glean from the manufacturing route that Mexico is on at the moment. I will admit that the projected GDP growth of 4% mentioned in the article is impressive. However, thinking that the key to economic growth in the United States is through a similar “manufacturing boom” is just out of touch with the times. As stated in class our wages can’t keep up with the cheaper wages of developing countries (a point the author eluded to in the section discussing “the three main factors at play,” factor number three). Thus, doing what Mexico is doing doesn’t fit the American economy. What the United States might try doing is finding a manufacturing niche that no one has a market on in order to obtain more jobs. Maybe something higher end or medically related would be of benefit to the United States. Even these jobs would end up comprising a small part of the United States economy because the United States is more of a white collar economy. As such, more should be done to protect that sector of our economy from things like outsourcing given its relevance to our modern economy.

 

 Overall, I think the media’s quick comparisons of other countries falls under the bad category of globalization. A fair amount of people would just use this article to say things like, if Mexico’s leader can do X Y & Z then so should Obama. Yet, many of those people wouldn’t actually think about all the differences or reasons why Obama can’t compromise or revert the economy backwards. Am I saying Obama shouldn’t try more or that I am happy with the lack of compromise by all, no. However, I think it is dangerous for journalist to gloss over the situation since many people will take them as a credible source to cite. Mind you not all journalism is bad though. The Scoop.It article I read this week regarding Walmart is a great example of how investigative journalism can have positive consequences. The major difference being one actually did their homework that cited concrete specifics, while the other made a flimsy analogy.  

Mark Hathaway's curator insight, September 22, 2015 7:44 AM

While our government is perpetually mired in gridlock, the Mexican government is making lasting reforms to their nation. News attention on Mexico is almost always negative. While the violence and the drug trade are serious issues,  not enough attention is being devoted to the rapid growth of the Mexican economy. Politicians in Mexico are coming together to create an environment for positive economic growth. The article describes three factors that are leading to the growth of the Mexican economy. The first factor is Mexico's geographic location. Being located right next door to the United States is an enormous advantage for Mexico. Industrial goods are easily and cheaply being transported across the border. The second factor is the ever controversial NAFTA. The agreement ratified during the Clinton Administration allows for Mexican goods to be sold at lower rates than their Asian counterparts. The final factor is wages. The cheap labor environment has made the nation a manufacturing hub. So what can the United States learn from Mexico? Many of their economic advantages are not applicable to our country. However, we can look to Mexico for an example of functioning government. It well past time that our political parties come together and actually try to govern our nation.

Kevin Nguyen's curator insight, October 7, 2015 1:47 PM

Wow, what an interesting article about the direction Mexico is taking off on. Their GDP is increasing and the worker's wages are surprising better than Chinese workers. Both are huge exports of good and as a younger country than China, Mexico is on it's way to manufacture and economic boom. As neighbor country to Mexico, I am curious to see the actions U.S will take to learn and mirror Mexico's growth.

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Chinese-Mexicans Celebrate Return To Mexico

Chinese-Mexicans Celebrate Return To Mexico | Geography Education | Scoop.it
MEXICO CITY — Juan Chiu Trujillo was 5 years old when he left his native Mexico for a visit to his father's hometown in southern China. He was 35 when he returned.


Migratory patterns and globalization can lead to some intriguing cultural blends that would seem improbable 100 years ago. This story of shows vividly how ethnicity does NOT always correspond to culture.

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Cam E's curator insight, February 4, 2014 12:17 PM

What a journey that must have been, to not return to your country for 30 years after going on vacation. Apart from the personal story in the article, the notion of ethnic groups that we practical never hear of is really interesting. While it makes sense that there were Chinese people in Mexico, it's just something which I never actively realized. There should be a  book of ethnic conflicts which never make the well-known history books, if there isn't one already.

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Changing Face of the US/Mexico Border

Changing Face of the US/Mexico Border | Geography Education | Scoop.it

This lesson plan was specifically designed with Arizona examples and aligned to the Arizona state standards, but it be easily adapted.  I saw a presentation based on this lesson at the NCGE conference as was incredibly impressed.  Also, you'll note that like this one, there are many other lesson plans freely available on the Arizona Geographic Alliance website.  


Tags: K12, borders, political, landscape, migration, unit 4 political.

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oyndrila's comment, October 14, 2012 11:40 AM
I found very useful resources on the website. Thank you for sharing it.
Jess Deady's curator insight, April 17, 2014 3:25 PM

This is an important lesson, especially for those who actually live in Arizona/Mexico and have seen the border itself. Learning about the Arizona/Mexican border is important and shouldn't be left solely to teaching it only in those areas. The maps included in the lesson plan are efficient and could be used in the high school setting.

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Cities on Border With Mexico Burdened by Calls for Medical Help

Cities on Border With Mexico Burdened by Calls for Medical Help | Geography Education | Scoop.it
From San Diego to Brownsville, Tex., requests for assistance have become a drain on the resources of fire departments in cities on the United States border with Mexico.

 

This is a poignant example of how site and situation impact the local geographic factors. 

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Cam E's curator insight, February 4, 2014 12:05 PM

This is one factor I never thought about before reading the article. Borders are one of the defining concepts of what constitutes a nation, and yet in emergencies these boundaries can become much more fluid. Of course borders in the first place are a human creation, but I imagine that along any border in the world, someone in dire need would want to get to the closest hospital, even if they're crossing a border to do so. At this point the idea of the authority implicated alongside borders might begin to seem less important. Though this makes me wonder if there are some locations which have international treaties so that local foreign departments may cross the border to help.

Jess Deady's curator insight, April 24, 2014 4:43 PM

Medical expenses are a burden on millions of people each and every year. With conditions like this on the border there is no wonder why the Calimex fire department and responders needed funds. They also need to do something about the conditions on the California/Mexican border.

Danielle Lip's curator insight, February 3, 2015 1:18 PM

After reading this article I think there should be some type of health service at the border, using the fire trucks and ambulance as a taxi is unacceptable. If people crossing the border do not have health care as stated that some done, the ambulance and fire trucks should not have to cover the cost, money should be given to those fire stations across the border and without help the departments might run into some trouble.

 In San Diego more than half of the calls that the department receives comes from the port which is equivalent to the state borders. Are people seriously that desperate for a way to get across the border quicker? 

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Pena Nieto claims victory in Mexico election

Pena Nieto claims victory in Mexico election | Geography Education | Scoop.it
Presidential candidate says Mexicans have voted for change of direction after exit polls project win for his PRI party.

 

For the first time in 12 years, Mexico's president will be from the PRI party (which dominated and led power from the 1920's to 2000).  Enrique Peña Prieto won the election, in large part due to Mexico's dissatisfacation with the PAN's handling of the escalating drug violence.  A few decades back, the PRI kept the violence out of the streets with some tacit agreements with the drug cartels to stay within particular territories.

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Seth Dixon's comment, July 2, 2012 11:00 AM
I'm afraid that stability and corruption is what Mexico is choosing over instability and freedom. Unfortunately, stability and liberty weren't both on the table. Maybe the PRI in the last 12 years out of power has cleaned up it's act but I am nervous since they were are "party monopoly" when in power that would violate human rights and rig elections.
Roland Trudeau Jr.'s comment, July 7, 2012 11:26 AM
This picture speaks of how the Mexican people feel towards this election; http://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=419149768126819&set=a.186306054744526.42461.175058372535961&type=1&ref=nf
Jessica Rieman's curator insight, February 4, 2014 12:43 PM

This article is about the victory over the election and the vixctor coming in first was congradulated by President Obama and said that he is excited to be working together in the efforts of creating a better cause. Pena Priento is now the system ruler

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Mexico's 'maquiladora' labor system keeps workers in poverty

Mexico's 'maquiladora' labor system keeps workers in poverty | Geography Education | Scoop.it

Some four decades after welcoming foreign assembly plants and factories, known as maquiladoras, Mexico has seen only a trickle of its industrial and factory workers join the ranks of those who even slightly resemble a middle class.

 

Despite making such consumer goods like BlackBerry smartphones, plasma TVs, appliances and cars that most people in the US, for instance, consider necessities, Mexican workers in these factories seldom get to enjoy these items because, as this article argues, the labor system keeps them in poverty.  Foreign investment in these businesses keep unions out and attracts workers from poorer areas, allowing low-cost labor to prevail.  Less than $8 a day is the going wage - great for the bottom line and consumer prices but very bleak for those who toil in this system.

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Olga Varlamov's curator insight, November 23, 2013 8:26 PM

This article talks about how the maquiladora labor system dosen't provide enough money for it's workers. Many in Mexico are living in poverty and can't afford much more than dinner because of their low wages.

Jessica Rieman's curator insight, February 4, 2014 12:47 PM

The labor system keeps workers in Poverty. This is the argument that is transitioned by stating the fact that many factory workers are and will always remian in poverty if they have no oppurtunity to move up in the food chain and become educated in order to get themselves out of poverty. They need different skills in order to aquire a better job to create a better life.  

Edgar Manasseh Jr.'s curator insight, February 11, 2015 11:33 PM

Its a very sad situation reading this. Seeing people go through all this to just survive. Kids don't even get any education and follow their parents footsteps to work at a plant just to be able to pay for bills. 8 dollars a day, and you wonder why they try to run to united states. Its very unfortunate that a lot of people go through this and i hope it changes soon, because to see that this is going on makes me thankful for what i have around me. Foreign investors are not great as they set out to be take advantage of the poor and get rich out of it, i think its pretty ridiculous.

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For first time since Depression, more Mexicans leave U.S. than enter

For first time since Depression, more Mexicans leave U.S. than enter | Geography Education | Scoop.it
A study sees a decline in immigration to the United States from Mexico after tightened border control, increased deportations, a flagging U.S. economy and a declining Mexican birthrate.

 

The wave of immigrants coming into the USA is something of the past. Push factors: Why are more Mexicans choosing to stay in Mexico?  Pull factors: Why is the United States less on an option for many would-be migrants these days?  Cross-border issues: How are issues on both sides of the border changing these patterns? 

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Mikaela Kennedy's curator insight, February 7, 2013 5:48 PM

One of the last lines in this really stood out to me: "Mexicans would rather be in a precarious situation than a situation of fear."  I feel as though that is true for all people living on earth. 

James Hobson's curator insight, September 23, 2014 11:59 AM

(Mexico topic 3)

   Instead of focusing on the reasons behind the decline/reversal in Mexico-America immigration in my first topic, for this article I would like to mention how the facts cited differ so greatly from what is being broadcast and inferred from larger news agencies. Especially within the last few months, I would've thought that Mexican immigration into the US would be at an all-time high. Never would I have previously guessed that it would be closer to a net gain of near 0 (or even a net loss). This goes to show how news agencies "cater" to certain demographics of people and what they want to hear. To me it's like a lobbyist recruitment, trying to gain more supporters of a specific cause in hopes of achieving a specific goal.

   On a separate note, I was interested in the mention of how certain researchers believe the pattern could shift again once the US economy begins to further recover. I wonder if a rise in immigration would actually happen, given that Mexico's economy is now more developed and providing more opportunity? That's something to think about...

Adam Deneault's curator insight, December 6, 2015 6:31 PM

I personally do not keep up with immigration statistics in the US whether they be legal or legal, I just knew that people all the time illegally immigrated here from Mexico or other countries. Most of the illegal citizens live in Texas and California. Until now, I never knew that people actually immigrated back to Mexico from the US. This reverse immigration of Mexicans is from a few kay factors, tightened border security, a weak U.S. job and housing construction market. Whether the reversal is temporary or permanent, it could have significant implications for the United States.There is also an idea, that this trend of leaving the US could reverse itself if the US economy boosts, or the Mexican economy fails. 

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Power of Place

Power of Place | Geography Education | Scoop.it
Explore educational and professional development resources for teachers and classrooms on Annenberg Media's learner.org. Companion to the Annenberg Media series Power of Place.

 

Maquiladoras, outsourcing, migration and regional differences within Mexico are main themes in this video.  This is a resource of videos that many are very familiar with, but this is worth repeating for those not familiar with the Annenberg Media's "Power of Place" video series.  With 26 videos (roughly 30 minutes each) that are regionally organized, this be a great resource for teachers. 

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Jessica Rieman's curator insight, February 4, 2014 12:59 PM

During this video you can distanctly see the differences between the outsourcing that Latin American had to do in order to surivive with their goverment the way it was and also how the mirgation came into play by which groups of people migrated to specific regions and what made them move there. Regional differences are also a major factor because of the regions and how they have progressed theought time and what will happen in the future.

miya harris's curator insight, September 10, 2014 9:46 AM

This video talks about the migration in Mexico and the reasons the people had for migrating. At the beginning of the video it talks about border patrol and people trying to illegally  cross the border from Mexico to America. When border patrol wrote up the reports they had to record what city the people came from and that helped geographer Richard Jones with his research plan to find out what regions were driving people out of Mexico.

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For Mexico City, a Repurposed Landfill

For Mexico City, a Repurposed Landfill | Geography Education | Scoop.it

"Methane from a landfill will flow to a power plant, helping to keep the lights on in the city."

Seth Dixon's insight:

When Mexico City’s government shut down the giant Bordo Poniente landfill last December, officials announced that they had a full-blown plan for the site...the city aims to capture the methane gas produced by the landfill to fuel a power plant that could supply electricity to as many as 35,000 homes.

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Kaitlin Young's curator insight, December 14, 2014 4:20 PM

Usually when a landfill becomes overloaded, it just gets shut down and left to rot. Mexico City is trying to do something new and ingenious with its massive landfill. Instead of closing off the land and letting it stay as reusable space, Mexico is hoping to develop a way to harness landfill gases in order to make electricity. If it is successful, it could prove to be a world-changing solution for other large, developing cities. It has the potential of lowering energy costs, creating jobs, and finding a purpose for land that would otherwise remain unusable for probably centuries. 

Jacob Crowell's curator insight, December 16, 2014 7:58 AM

In class we discussed the numerous environmental issues that exist in Mexico City. This is a great way of turning a negative into a positive. On a larger scale, I think this is going to be the kind of solutions that every country will have to eventually find. Creative ways of using technology to turn harmful waste into energy is a great idea. Methane is a cleaner than coal and recycling lessens the burden on natural resources.

Benjamin Jackson's curator insight, December 13, 2015 11:31 AM

this is a genius use of a necessary evil [landfills]. in the modern world energy is necessary, and the use of methane from a landfill means that the fuel is cheap, and that cost will transfer to the cost of power for the people buying it.