LEGISLATORS URGE THE GOVERNOR TO PROJECT RESOURCES IN 2020 TO CLEAN UP THE ATOYAC-ZAHUAPAN RIVER
JULY 23, 2019
VÍCTOR HUGO VARELA LOYOLA
Federal lawmakers by Tlaxcala urged Governor Marco Antonio Mena Rodríguez to summon them and local deputies to a meeting to jointly analyze and project resources in the 2020 Expenditure Budget to boost sanitation programs and projects of the Atoyac-Zahuapan River.
According to Senator Joel Molina Ramírez and federal deputy Claudia Pérez Rodríguez, both of Morena, this meeting will have to be held no later than next September, so that the proposal that leaves that table is raised in the project of the Federation Expenditure Budget (PEF) 2020 and corresponding state.
The call of both federal legislators was given during a work table held in the community presidency of Villalta, municipality of Tepetitla, which organized the federal deputy to present a system designed in the United States to purify the wastewater that is discharged by industries to the Atoyac river in that area of the entity.
In the presentation of this project, by its creator Tim Hassett of the company Cool Technologies, were the mayor of Tepetitla, Carlos Fernández Nieves, the president of the community of Villalta, Óscar Peña Martínez, and officials of the State Commission for Prevention of Health Risks (Coeprist), of the National Water Commission (Conagua), of the Ministry of Environment and Natural Resources (Semarnat) and of the Federal Office of Environmental Protection (Profepa).
According to Tim Hasset, the system developed by Cool Technologies has the ability to make drinking not only wastewater, but from the sea, and after a tour that was subsequently made by the tributary to see the type of discharges it receives, simply Vista guaranteed that it is possible to clean it up, but for this, a study of the polluting elements by certified institutions must first be carried out.
The proposal, although it was well received by the president of the community of Villalta and by the mayor of Tepetitla, both expressed their uncertainty that it is concrete, given the innumerable promises made by state and federal authorities to solve the problem of pollution of the River that dates back more than 20 years, and which, according to studies, is the cause of cancer and kidney disease in that region of the entity.
In fact, Peña Martínez considered that the authorities will not really act in this case until the contamination of the waters affects them directly, because “the issue of Villalta is not just, they have already been written, it has already been spoken” and recalled that last week he went with Claudia Pérez, who is a federal deputy for District 3, to which the municipality of Tepetitla belongs, to request his intervention before Conagua.
“But it seems that it still does not generate an echo” this situation that also affects communities in the municipalities of Ixtacuixtla, Nopalucan and Natívitas, and that has even been about to provoke clashes between inhabitants who decide to close the places where the wastewater is discharged and those who oppose it because they use it to irrigate their crops.
He regretted that the various federal and state administrations spare resources to promote river sanitation projects, despite the fact that it has caused the death of people and has generated invaluable economic expenses to others more for medical treatments for ills caused by the contamination of natural and average resources ambient.
“And no one of us here at the table will understand it until it happens to us or to a relative. It is a matter of sensitivity, because when the meeting is over, everyone returns to their activities and it seems that the topic is forgotten, and here the problem is latent, it is daily.”
He revealed that the pollution is so strong, that the inhabitants of that community have to cover the cracks of their doors and windows so that the penetrating smell that emerges from the river does not penetrate and that also forces people to sleep with their mouths covered so as not to breathe it, “They would be invited to spend a night here, in Villalta, for them to see.”
The local deputy, Miguel Ángel Covarrubias Cervantes, also participated in the work table, who proposed as a solution alternatives the construction of a treatment plant in that community and that the channels through which the sewage run run, however, Peña Martínez considered that this last proposal would be just “an improvement”.
Previously, Senator Joel Molina recalled that a few weeks ago Villalta families visited him in the Senate of the Republic to express their concern about cases of people with cancer allegedly caused by pollution in that region of the state, which he described as “homicidal invisible” and that causes many expenses for dialysis and hemodialysis in cases of kidney patients.
He regretted that this problem has not been addressed by the previous authorities and the current one and considered that it is the result of the corruption that prevailed in the federal and state administrations. He criticized that this meeting was not attended by any representative of the General Coordination of Ecology (CGE) although he personally communicated with the head of that body, Efraín Flores Hernández, to invite him and also told Governor Marco Antonio Mena Rodríguez. “The deputies in the local Congress, as in the federal one, where budgets are generated, we have to put the finger so that the authorities responsible for operating the programs do not have the pretext that they have no money. Mr. Governor, don’t let September pass by allowing us to sit down all those who are directly involved to analyze it in a technical and budgetary way” for next year.
Regarding the water purification system, Claudia Pérez considered that its operation in the entity is viable, since there is the possibility of financing a bank and by the United States government, through a deputy of that nation.