...the U.S. government is paying to upgrade outdated Mexican trucks that hemorrhage illegal amounts of exhaust on their trips north to deliver merchandise... The Mexican trucks enter the U.S. under a 17-year-old international trade pact known as the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) and they’ve created an air pollution crisis. The air quality in border towns has been especially impacted by the exorbitant levels of exhaust released by the Mexican trucks, which also fail to meet American safety standards.
Since the Mexican truckers have no intention of fixing the problem, Uncle Sam has stepped in to save the environment. U.S. taxpayers have picked up the cost to replace old mufflers on dozens of trucks and many more are scheduled to be upgraded by the middle of this year. The unbelievable story was reported this week by an Arizona newspaper that says replacing the old mufflers with new catalytic converters will reduce harmful diesel emissions by up to 30%.
...the money is actually coming from the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the same bloated federal agency that’s dedicated millions to “environmental justice” programs that help minorities get green. Under that brilliant EPA project, leftwing groups get federal dollars to teach black, Latino and indigenous folks how to recycle, reduce carbon emissions and participate in “green jobs” training.
...EPA grants have [already] upgraded 55 Mexican trucks and many more will be enhanced this year. Each truck costs U.S. taxpayers about $1,600. The feds justify the expenditure by claiming that it will improve air quality on both sides of the border... [Of course,] U.S. truck drivers are required to have the type of converters that Mexicans are getting from the American government, though they must pay for theirs. For years, the idea of Mexican trucks entering the U.S. under NAFTA has been a contentious issue because they follow the notoriously dismal safety standards of a third-world country.
In fact, a few years ago the Department of Transportation’s Inspector General determined that Mexican trucks that regularly travel throughout American highways are rarely checked for safety by U.S. authorities despite a provision requiring it. Rules requiring that every Mexican truck undergo a thorough safety compliance check and that every driver has a valid license and is proficient in English have been virtually ignored, according to the IG’s findings.
Because there's nothing better to spend our money on than retrofitting hazardous Mexican vehicles with anti-pollution equipment. And because we want more vehicles transporting heaven knows what from the failed narco-terror state on our southern border.
The good news? This proves it, once and for all: the EPA needs to be defunded -- completely. It's outlived its usefulness. If it ever had any.
Doug, I live on the border in South Texas roughly 60 miles up from the Gulf of Mexico. A number of these trucks smuggle immigrants to this country and about 90% of the ones I've seen are old, old, old.
So, at $1500 per truck I'd guess this is adding to the deficit, and ticking Americans off no end.
Great catch, I live down here and hadn't heard anything about it.
My give a f&@$-o-meter just pegged on the negative end when it comes to preventing a government shutdown.
Mexicans get free mufflers and Americans are told to "consider a trade-in." Incredible.
Like GM Roper points out, these trucks are busy bringing us the undocumented voters we need to Win The Future in 2012. If they aren't equipped with anti-pollution equipment, it might make our new voters sick, and then WTF?
Next, Lady M is planning to expand her healthy eating agenda by equipping Mexican trucks with organic juice and salad bars!
The catalytic converter on my Ford gave out, and they tell me I can't drive it unless I get it replaced. maybe I have to move to Mexico so I can get it done by the federals.
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