DHS waives environmental rules for Texas border wall work

Read the full story in ConstructionDive.

The U.S. Department of Homeland Security on Oct. 10 published a noticein the Federal Register of its decision to waive any regulations that might interfere with the expedited construction or repair of border wall/fence sections in Cameron County, Texas. The department issued a similar notice on Oct. 11 for work in Hidalgo County, Texas.

The Cameron County scope of work includes 11 automated border wall gates and related improvements to the PF225 Bollard Fence in the U.S. Customs and Border Patrol’s Rio Grande Valley Sector, which is reportedly an area with a large number of illegal entries into the U.S. In Hidalgo County, also in the Rio Grande Valley Sector, the department issued a release that said the scope of work includes a 14-mile wall project. The newly built parts of the wall will close the gaps left unfinished during construction in 2008.

The department said that although it has waived the requirement to abide by a host of rules that any other developer would be required to follow, “it remains committed to environmental stewardship” and will work with other state and federal agencies to make sure that “impacts to the environment, wildlife, and cultural and historic artifacts” are kept to a minimum.

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