Scientific American: Trump Mexican Border Wall will be a “Climate Mistake”

vindolanda hadrians wall

Guest essay by Eric Worrall

Scientific American thinks construction of President Trump’s border wall will dangerously exacerbate climate change.

Trump’s Wall Could Cause Serious Environmental Damage

The effects of building a massive concrete wall range from increased emissions to blocked wildlife migration routes.

And climate activists say that President Trump’s border wall with Mexico and other efforts to keep people out represent a backward effort to stem a tide of migration that would be better addressed at its source: in places where climate impacts are already happening.

Trump, though, had one response yesterday, as he announced an executive order that fulfills his campaign promise to build a border wall: “Beginning today, the United States of America gets back control of its borders, gets back its borders.”

Environmental activists say there’s already plenty of evidence that a border wall, beyond the existing fencing that runs along large portions of the border, would be an expensive and potentially damaging climate mistake.

“In terms of climate adaptation, building a border wall is an act of self-sabotage,” said Dan Millis, a program manager with the Sierra Club’s Borderlands project. “And the reason I say that is we’re already seeing wildlife migrations blocked with the current walls and fences that have already been built. We have hundreds of these walls that were built without dozens of environmental protections.”

Read more: https://www.scientificamerican.com/article/trumps-wall-could-cause-serious-environmental-damage/

Words fail me.

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380 thoughts on “Scientific American: Trump Mexican Border Wall will be a “Climate Mistake”

  1. SciAm. No longer either scientific or american. Lost science decades ago. Failing. Was sold to German publisher Holtzbrinck in 2008 ( Nature publisher).

    • “ristvan January 27, 2017 at 5:25 pm
      SciAm. No longer either scientific or american. Lost science decades ago. Failing. Was sold to German publisher Holtzbrinck in 2008 ( Nature publisher).”

      Possibly Trump should buy it back.

      • Perhaps the Holtzbrink management should fire alarmists like Erika Bolstad! It’s not her first nonsense article. See: Alaska faces 5,5 Billion $ climate damage cost 2100.
        Predictions are difficult, especially those concerning the future!

      • “And make the Germans pay for it.” LOL, nice one.

        Last time the Americains tried to make Germany “pay for it ” we ended up with Hitler.

      • “Last time the Americains tried to make Germany “pay for it ” we ended up with Hitler.”

        & he vowed to remove people he didn’t like & to Make Germany Great Again’ ….guess what happened next

      • “Last time the Americains tried to make Germany “pay for it ” we ended up with H!t**r .”

        & he vowed to remove people he didn’t like & to Make Germany Great Again’ ….guess what happened next

      • What greens usually forget, is that A Hitler’s gang were the first environmentalists: First animal protection laws, first environment protection laws etc.Roman Emperor Hadrianus (his wall pictured)did not apparently care about small animals as much as safety, same thing with Chinese who built the Great Wall.
        So, history has previous examples of necessary walls without environmental problems..

      • The US did not make Germany pay for WW1, the English and French did that despite Woodrow Wilson trying to stop this.

      • 1saveenergy-
        Such comparisons not only have become ever so tiresome, but also put those who make them in exceedingly bad light.

      • Leonard Weinstein
        January 28, 2017 at 5:44 am

        “The US did not make Germany pay for WW1, the English and French did that despite Woodrow Wilson trying to stop this.”

        It was tongue in cheek, not supposed to be historically checked. Thanks for the correction,

      • “”he vowed to remove people he didn’t like & to Make Germany Great Again’ “”

        No other civilized developed country on the face of this planet…
        …would have an open border with some dangerous third world country like we do with Mexico

        What Mexico has gotten away with doing to us….any other country we would be at war with them

        We invaded Panama to get rid of Noriega for a lot less……..

      • 1saveenergy: What a bunch of bunk. Must have taken at least 1 minute to find that on the internet an toss it in. I’m sooooo impressed.

      • At least there seems to be some new information emerging as to why Germany has not become great, and why they allow their women to be raped at will by what amounts to millions of unruly houseguests.
        Behold, the modern German male:

      • And yes…I would say that organized drug gangs bringing in narcotics that are killing American children and adults at the rate of over 50,000 per year is reason enough to build a wall, all by itself and even if that was the only reason.
        Clearly it is not the only reason.
        Bloody wars have indeed been fought for far far less.

      • “”drug gangs bringing in narcotics””

        It’s impossible that out government is not complicit…
        The amount of drugs coming into our country each day would be impossible without their help

    • These guys are geniuses. We all know that it is hotter in Mexico. Trump should take the entire climate change budget to build the wall to slow the movement of heat into the US. This should be more than enough to build even a double wall.

      While the impact may be 0.000001 degree of cooling over the next 1000 years, that easily satisfies the green criteria of cost effectiveness.

      • Look, the solution to the wall eco disaster is simple. Build mirrors on the south face of the wall to reflect the heat back into South America and keep the Northern Hemisphere cool. Dah. Enough said. Maybe cost an extra billion. So what. Carbon fiber can line the north face to keep it cool.

      • Hey , what an opportunity. Thousands of miles of solar panels. Capture Mexican sun shine and use it to power the US !

        Great way to make the Mexicans pay and “save the planet”. Win , win.

        Also an Exec Order stipulating that the solar panels must be make in US, not imported from China. Like the pipe lines.

      • Remember when the Chinese built the Great Wall of China? Then the whole world burned up! Yup. It just burned to a cinder! Oh, it is still there!!! Oh no, we are doomed!

      • Gary: Please don’t encourage renewables. Returning to the “catch energy” policies of the 19th century is depressing.

      • Wait…mirrors?
        I thought we were going to paint the Mexico side of the wall with a an ultra realistic mural depicting a horizon to horizon horde of shotgun totin’ yankee rednecks.
        You know…to compliment the alligator filled moat of raw sewage and punji sticks on our side, and the glass shard imbedded mortar bed along the top.
        Toss some half rotten corpses onto the razor wire projecting out on both side at various levels as well.

    • No doubt it. One look at the centuries of climate damage the Great Wall of China caused confirms it. GMAFB.

      • exactly….was my first thought too

        They wouldn’t dare tell the Chinese to tear it down

        But then, this is all about attacking us

    • Amazing. Holtzbrinck eh? All this time I thought both SciAm and Nature had been bought by Conde’ Nasty. I can tell the difference between Weird, Ars Technophile, GQ, Golf Digest, SciAm, Nature and Vogue. They all seem like pretty much the same rags with different covers to me. Maybe Advanced Publications is owned or owned by this Holtzbrinck outfit? It’s just to coincidental.

    • There are no greener politicians in the world than the Germans except maybe the stupid french

      • The Greens are a minority in Germany as they are in France. But because of the electoral system, which is a proportional voting system, coalitions between the parties are mostly necessary to get majorities.
        Therefore it is possible that a minority of morons, which counts barely 6 % of the electorate, can hold the majority of the people on the bull nose ring! In addition, a large percentage of journalists in the media mainstream are left-greens, which scare people with climate-alarm junk! So all Politicians try to surf on the pseudo-eco-wave!
        Last not least there is also the embodied disaster, A. Merkel, with her silly “Energiewende”( turn to renewable energy ), her power obsession and her moral arrogance towards the rest of Europe and the german patriots. She sqints to the Green-socialists as her potential coalition partner after the 2017 elections!
        President Trump was right when he said , her politics were ruining Germany!

    • The great mexico wall is going to turn out to be the great mexico mistake. Far cheaper and effective to remove the incentives. No drug war no handouts no illegal immigration.

      On it’s own the wall won’t do a thing that a good sized ladder won’t defeat so you have to add surveillance and response. I expect a couple of sandstorms and you’ll be able to walk over some spots. Most of the area already has a natural barrier in desert.

      It is hard to imagine that there wouldn’t be some type environmental damage. Large man made structures have a history of unintended consequence. The original overseas highway was affecting FL. bay. The railway crossing the flats in Utah et.al.

      • The comments about the great wall of china make me smile. Ok, sometimes the oldies are goodies but we’re applying a 14th century solution (and earlier) to a 21st century problem. Actually the great wall is better because it was also a highway for trade and rapid response.

        People crossing the border is the symptom, not the problem.

        I also agree with Ron Paul that classically walls have been built to keep the citizens in, not the other way.

      • Requiring that only legal, documented residents be allowed to make remittals of cash would remove some of the incentives. US residents without legal documentation would still be allowed to send goods south of the border. This would force the governments south of the border to restrict or tax these shipments of goods, thus taxing their own citizens, instead of us taxing ours with an import tariff.

        Whether an actual wall is the best way to secure the border is certainly debatable. Why not build a dam or series of dams on the Rio Grande river, primarily for security reasons. It is a lot easier to patrol a lake and hard to cross a lake with ladders and tunnels. The water and electricity could be used for the benefit of peaceful residents on both sides of the border.

  2. Well we could put pipes passing under the wall to allow for some wildlife migration, but we all know that pipelines increase climate change, too.

    • Scientific American began as a tabloid in the 1800s. It was gussied up with “consensus” Science in the 1940s with well written and edited articles. Left wing politics has existed in the magazine probably since a Piel scion was in charge but left wing politics accelerated in the magazine since the late 1960s. It returned to tabloid status during the past 30 years.

      Dan Kurt

  3. When there aren’t any specifics it’s typically a false alarm. I’m not aware of any terrestrial-bound animals that have clear migratory patterns in the Southwest U.S. Coyotes will move around based on changes in the mule deer populations, but they really don’t migrate.

    Anyone, enlighten me…

    • Mark – my thought, too. I’m not aware of any major migrations that would be affected. There are birds and butterflies that migrate across the Southern border, but… they can fly!

      • If those darned birds and butterflies are crossing the border without the appropriate visas I recommend they put up lines of wind turbines to slash them to pieces.

        That’ll teach ’em.

      • You are basically correct; no normal land animal migrations.

        There have been some wildlife that cross the border as a normal wandering of their territory or young males searching for new territory; e.g. ocelots, armadillo, peccary, deer and even jaguar.

        Crossing the Rio Grande is their toughest trial.

    • Put in multiple border crossings where the animals could be processed and pass through (with the appropriate documentation, no criminal records or nothing to declare). This would create jobs too.

    • I’m a big fan of the Big Bend of Texas, just met a somewhat relieved border patrol agent who worked there, my best friend, now diseased, hiked there for 3 decades, and went to school with biologists who worked there. Four of us from Louisiana had great days there with the contrast and the now somewhat disappearing isolation, even with some cell phone service.

      According to Schmidly’s “Mammals of Trans-Pecos Texas” there only seem to be migrations in the transient sense, and he talks mostly about Pleistocene changes. It is however, a desert/mountain area continuous with Mexico. Black Bears appeared not too many years ago in the park said to be from Mexico and there are tropical animals like jaguars and ocelots that don’t recognize borders. Biologists might rightly expect some isolation of small edge of range populations. If you are going to play the hypothetical game it works both ways as grizzlies, occurring there long ago, might be stopped going south someday. For some time there has been a project push for continuous habitat without barriers. It is a fallacy to argue that this means a physical fence the whole length and the article seems based on “activists and architects.” The border and inland habitat is already mostly a barrier where many illegal immigrants have been enticed to their death. Crossing a lot of the Rio Grande requires serious mountaineering skills.

      Decades ago, about the time Scientific American began to lose their credibility, I predicted that there would be a backlash against radical and unproven (able?) environmental claims which would damage their agenda and hurt the environment. No doubt there will be effects and there are serious scientists to predict and observe them. There are clear cases of habitat damage from the human migrations so a cost/benefit would seem in order. Should take a couple of weeks, at least for the essentials and if you leave out the hypotheticals.

      • Simmental cattle were brought into Texas after the Department of Agriculture refused an import licence. The rancher had a spread on the border with Mexico, so imported the cattle to Mexico and then brought them over the Rio Grande onto his ranch.

      • Out of respect, I think the mods. should edit you comment…re your deceased friend.
        Unless you mean to say what you said.

      • Glad for good editing, he was diseased, then died many years ago. Has a brick at the Museum of the Big Bend with a cigar and a crane on it.

    • I recently saw a report that jaguars were moving from Mexico into the mountains in the southwestern US. Only a few individuals so far. I sort of like the idea of jaguars establishing themselves in the southwest over time. Of course Mexico could just give the US a bunch as a partial payment for the wall? Maybe the WWF could donate $100 million to the US treasury for each one? Surely preserving biodiversity makes this worth while from the environmentalism point of view? Jaguars and a border … a good deal!

    • What about the butterflies, The poor monarchs will have to fly higher over the wall and will drop from exhaustion on the other side.

    • Tortoises! I live in greater Houston and in a field off the Grand Parkway I’ve noticed a tortoise living in a “fenced” area with a herd of goats. He is UNABLE to migrate south as the temperatures drop here in the winter (it gets into the 30s!) and there is no doubt that the atmosphere over this pasture is WARMER! (Or cooler depending on the evidence required to advance my agenda.)

  4. If it’s a climate mistake or an environmental mistake then the supporters of the far left should have been proactive years ago and seen the need for more disciplined measures that are taking place now.

    Think of all the rattlesnakes and armadillos that have been disturbed by unchecked immigration.

  5. No more reindeer migrations from Mexico to the North Pole in the fall, which means no one to pull Santa’s sleigh, which means no more Christmas. Trump is the Grinch.

    • The sell-out Grinch gave the presents back. It follows “Grinch Trump” will find a way to get those magical reindeer to the North Pole, though magical reindeer should not need help. Or design a new delivery system involving drones and internet delivery. Either way…..

  6. This reminds me of little kids playing let’s pretend. Let’s pretend we are real experts and have a clue about what we’re talking about.

    He who knows, does not speak. He who speaks, does not know. Lao Tse

    The arrogance of these idiots is just breath taking.

  7. Wow. I read the article and I’m amazed that ‘San Francisco-based Architects, Designers and Planners for Social Responsibility’ are going to take a stand because in their opinion it’s….bad. How do I subscribe to this amazing science loaded magazine? I want to send them a letter and suggest that instead of concrete we use decommissioned wind turbines and solar panels to build the wall. We can fill in the holes with all of the dead birds and bats. Waste not want not.

  8. In the olden times if you faced the anger of The Lord you were transformed into a pillar of salt. Now there is only Trump. Much to do and so little time. The professional “victim” class is about to become unemployed by taxpayer decree. I cannot see them migrating to Mexico willingly. Encouragement may be required.

  9. Read your history of all the barriers that man has erected –
    Hadrian’s Wall, Offas Dyke, Great wall of china, Great hedge of India, Maginot Line, Berlin Wall…..
    None worked. Why would this one ?
    Another waste of time, energy & resources, just to make a cheap political point.

    • Its nothing compared to the waste we have undertaken to make an expensive political point about climate change…..

    • It will work as well as the one in your back yard. When was the last time you climbed over your neighbor’s fence and went sneaking around in their backyard?

    • Well the Israeli fence/wall says differently:
      “The numbers bear out the effectiveness of the security fence. According to Tirza, between 2000 and 2006, there were 4,000 terrorist attacks in Israel, resulting in the deaths of 1,639 Israelis. In stark contrast to those statistics, from 2007 through the present in 2015, there have only been 32 suicide-bomb attacks, and only 20 Israelis have died.”
      “The barrier’s planned length is approximately 450 miles, over 80 percent of which has been built. But only 5 percent is wall, while the other 95 percent is fence. And there are a number of checkpoints along the wall where individuals can pass freely both ways, but where Israeli soldiers are able to stop suicide bombers.
      Israel keeps a short space on both sides of the fence completely clear of bushes or debris, so that cameras—both normal and night vision—can maintain a clear view of the fence. Special Israeli vehicles sweep the ground twice per day on the Israeli side to maintain a clear view, and to enable Israeli patrols to find the prints of any potential attackers who make it over the barrier. Countless cameras are deployed along the fence, along with heat sensors, motion sensors, and metal detectors, which coupled with the sensors enable Israeli patrols to detect any breaches. Beyond those, underground seismic sensors are on the lookout for men digging tunnels under the wall.”
      http://www.breitbart.com/national-security/2015/10/20/israels-security-fence-saves-lives-builder-tells-america/

      • Excellent example of one that works. I don’t think the Israelis were too concerned about wildlife – and neither should we. It will survive. Funny none of these environmentalists are worried about the survival of our citizens.

      • Another example of a great wall that worked remarkably well was the wall that protected the city of Constantinople. For a thousand years it protected the city. It failed only twice in that thousand years, once through treachery and in the end when faced with simply overwhelming force.

    • Well the Great Wall of China was built just a few centuries before the birth of Christ and at last count in 2000 years not one Mexican or Central or South American has made it over. How can you say the walls don’t work?

    • This one is not designed to prevent modern armies from crossing. It is designed for individual people armed at most with small guns. Berlin wall was extremely efficient by the way.

    • Define “worked.” I think you’ll find that some of those “worked” as designed. The Maginot Line worked well enough that the Germans had to go around it. The Berlin wall kept 99+% of the East Berliners out of West Berlin.

    • Actually, Hadrian’s Wall worked when it was intact and the garrisons were still manning it. Great Wall, yup – same thing. Maginot Line, if I recall it was bypassed – so it sorta worked. Berlin Wall? Pretty sure that worked all too effectively until the Soviet Union collapsed. Not so sure you’ve made your point.

      • Maybe I should have said –
        None worked …IN THE LONG TERM … Why would this one ?

        Another waste of time, energy & resources, just to make …AN EXPENCIVE… political point.”

        The only barrier that has ever slowed/stopped migration (animal, human, plant, virus) is cold – snow & ice.

        How about getting the warmists/Sierra Club to pay for an Ice wall (solar powered ) they could fit diesel powered lamps to the panels so they work at night.

      • Li Zicheng was a Chinese rebel leader who overthrew the Ming dynasty in 1644 & briefly ruled over China. He executed thirty-eight members of the household of Ming Chinese general Wu Sangui. Wu opened a gate in the Great Wall at Shanhai Pass on 27th May 1644, in order to let Manchu/Qing forces into China. Li’s army was defeated the same day by the combined forces of Wu Sangui and the Manchus, Li fled from Beijing & was dead the following year. http://www.sacu.org/manchu.html

        Walls work when the defenders have no reason to admit the outsiders.

      • 1saveenergy I have friend with a T Ford that’s been continuously registered since it was built, yet the guy over the road has been through 2 cars in 10 years. They would have continued to work too had they been maintained as the Ford has. Nothing survives without maintenance.

      • The only reason that the ice wall worked was the simple fact that, on the other side was even more ice. And beyond that, more ice, thousand of miles of ice.

      • I’ve always thought the long term solution is significantly reducing corruption in the Mexican government, establishing the rule of law, providing a safe and level playing field for entrepreneurship, and letting the natural hard work and achievements of the Mexican people solve their economic problems. If I had the choice of living and working in Mexico with high wage and low taxes (with the same or better standard of living) versus – say – Minneapolis, I’d pick Mexico every time. I’d be willing to bet the Mexicans would feel that way too. I’d also be willing to bet that, by the time they got to that point, they’d be discussing building a southern border wall (if it didn’t exist already).

    • “Read your history of all the barriers that man has erected –
      Hadrian’s Wall, Offas Dyke, Great wall of china, Great hedge of India, Maginot Line, Berlin Wall…..
      None worked. Why would this one ?
      Another waste of time, energy & resources, just to make a cheap political point.”

      That’s a far better argument than statistical atmosphere in 30 year timespan (climate).

    • No one working? The Great Wall of China has been doing its business for centuries, or we might have in China today, perhaps, Mongols or Tartars. So we had them in Europe. The limes between the Roman Empire and Germania as well. There a slow adjustment on both sides of the limes began, one culture learned from the other in the slow way and drove despite limes trade. And if Rome had not collapsed because of inbreeding and degeneration, the Limes itself would have continued to work. The walls alone can not be helped, a society must also be strong, protect itself against conspicuous peoples, but also through walls.

      • ” And if Rome had not collapsed because of inbreeding and degeneration”

        The Roman Empire had & used a very large gene pool, so the general population was OK in that area.
        There was a fair bit of inbreeding in the ruling classes ( as we still see today) & that is well recorded.

        Many reasons for ‘The decline & fall of the Roman Empire’, far to many to list here, but a few to wet your whistle are –
        – Lead poisoning copper cookware was often lined with lead the same way we now line them with tin or teflon. Lead was in everything (Water, Food, Wine, Cosmetics), ‘lead’ to
        -‘Climate Change’ As the Roman Warm Period drew to a close, increased pressure from the northern tribes on long supply lines & lower crop yields coinciding with political infighting meant they took their eye/s off the ball.

      • Typo Should read –
        Lead was in everything (Water, Food, Wine, Cosmetics), that ‘lead’ to the rich having many mental problems
        high levels of lead have been found in late Roman skeletons See-
        Nriagu, Jerome O. Lead and lead poisoning in antiquity. New York: Wiley, 1983.

        Nriagu, J.O. “Saturnine Gout Among Roman Aristocrats.” New England Journal of Medicine 308, no. 11 (1983): 660–663.

        There is some discussion concerning diagensis and lead content in Roman skeletons.

        De Muynck, D., C. Cloquet, E. Smits, F.A. de Wolff, G. Quitté, L. Moens, and F. Vanhaecke. “Lead Isotopic Analysis of Infant Bone Tissue Dating from the Roman Era via Multicollector ICP–mass Spectrometry.” Analytical and Bioanalytical Chemistry 390, no. 2 (2008): 477–486.

    • Don’t really agree with that, energy saver. Okay, the Maginot Line was outflanked, but the Berlin Wall worked all too well, and the Great Wall of China and Hadrian’s Wall worked well enough until the Societies that built them decayed and degenerated. Offa’s Dyke was probably not a fortified wall, rather a treaty line, and the Great Hedge of India might have worked fine if they’d planted Berberis! All depends upon the political will behind the structure.

      • Exactly right Mothcatcher. The walls cited were defensive positions that were meant to be backed by an army. Roman troops were permanently posted all along Hadrian’s Wall. Hadrian’s Wall worked until the Roman troops withdrew. Chinese troops were posted all along the Great Wall. It wasn’t the walls that failed. The societies that built the walls crumbled and then the armies disappeared. Even today walls work well to keep poorly armed people in or out – witness the effectiveness of the Berlin Wall or the walls the Israelis built to keep out terrorists.

    • I believe it shouldn’t be called a wall, the design should be an integral border barrier system, with a flexible design intended to stop 95 % of illegal inmigrants and drug smugglers. This is needed to secure the boundary or perimeter. Once the boundary is secured the next step is to either deport or issue work or student visas to the illegal aliens already within the country.

      Regularizing the illegal alien status now, as has been proposed, is a non starter because it will encourage more illegals to pour through the border.

      I’m a (legal) inmigrant, and I think it’s useful for the USA to allow some inmigration, but it does have to be regulated, and there’s absolutely no reason to have it focused on one country or region merely because they can walk in. I like the Canadian points system.

      Scientific American is no longer a science publication, it’s a left wing activist piece of garbage. Discussing its content is only useful in a political context.

      • No one, and I mean no one, I know of in conservative politics has now or ever said there should be no immigration. In fact, it’s quite the opposite. We’re pointing at the long line of people that have begun the legal process that are forced to wait years to even begin the task of becoming new Americans. We’re outraged that, by breaking the law, we’re going to reward them for jumping the queue. All of Central and South America has far exceeded any reasonable quota for “immigration”. I’m for opening the flood gates for Europeans, Eastern Europeans, and Asians to begin their next new chapter of building – and defining – the American dream. South and Central American and the Middle East – not so much.

    • If one defines “works” as 100% successful, then no. Actually, the Berlin wall worked until we foolishly tore it down and let the communists cross over and allow invaders in to rape and pillage their populations on both sides of the wall. Until then, I’d say it worked. West Germany wasn’t mess.

      Anyway, if we’re going with 100%, then global warming has to get pitched because it’s not 100% accurate.

      Believing anything is 100% is a problem. Oh, and if you’re the one raped and beaten by the monsters crossing your border, it’s not “cheap politcal point”. Of course, you may live in a gated community like Zuckerberg and not care, right?

  10. So according to Scientific American, walls adversely affect climate change. Maybe because of this all walls should be deamed illegal and must be removed immediately. Those who believe in the Sceintific American article should have nothing to do with any sort of wall including owning walls, touching walls, or even entering any building or structure that includes any wall of any sort. What is the climate sensivity of a square foot of wall? Do walls have a cooling or a warming effect? How about roofs, floors, or fenses? Do they also adversely affect climate change?

    • Zuckerberg and other billionaires who lecture us all the time about everything, LOVE WALLS and some have been forced to stop building huge walls in Hawaii and California, etc.

    • The roof of my home is supported by four walls… and these definitely keep out the wildlife (except for the occasional mouse or earwhig). I suppose I must tear down these walls as well, but then climate change will affect our household… global cooling for six months, then global warming for another six… what to do?

      • We will all have to learn to live outside like wild animals for fear that to do otherwise might adversly affect global climate. What about the climate efficts of bird nests and spider webs and what to do about it? Maybe our cloths also adversly affect global climate.

    • I don’t think the cost of building it will come anywhere near what it costs us in processing, assistance, crime, property damages, and lives lost.

      • Thats just a hypothesis with a bit of belief thrown in;
        flesh it out with actual facts & figures. only then can you do a cost benefit analysis.

      • Ive been a project engineer and managed teams which included project managers. So I’m fairly familiar with the process that would be used by a large company to evaluate and optimize a project like this, which conceptually would cost over $10 billion USD.

        The process would start with a concept, which requires a thorough survey of the existing barriers, their failings, and the community input regarding visual and other impacts. A parallel effort would be needed to map the gaps, the illegal entry flows, and to understand the current flow of illegals entering by air, boat, road vehicles, etc. Once this is available a set of conceptual plans are prepared, and an initial cost estimate is done. At that point it’s important to establish a cost benefit ratio for each segment to be built (I’ve seen some locations on the Texas border that are no brainers).

        I’m not going to write you a manual, and also realize the USA government is famous for carrying out shitty projects because politicians are lousy managers. But it’s clear to me there is a whole world of knowledge about how to do this, and the media, politicians, Trump, and most people don’t have any idea of how this can be done. To them it’s like building a moon rocket.

      • energysaver. Some cost benefits are so obvious we make reliable decisions on them as individuals many times a day. Take a look at the cost of DEA and other agencies dealing with the fallout, the social welfare costs, municipal costs…. now subtract the benefits!

        Why is it that someone who would require such ‘exacting standards’ for this topic would, with no concrete evidence presented, give a pass to CAGW hysteria based on ‘might’ , ‘could’ happen in a hundred years! Selective precicision on a topic like illegal immigration is very revealing of your world view and your (political) science.

      • “the media, politicians, Trump, and most people don’t have any idea of how this can be done.”
        I wouldn’t put Trump in this category as he is just managing the process and will probably bring in experts as advisers, say maybe the Israeli wall constructors.

      • Fernando, I must repectfully disagree: Trump know EXACTLY how to do this. You hire one or more competent contruction firms, and write them a check. Its not even all that hard…

      • Gary Pearse
        January 28, 2017 at 7:41 am
        you say
        “Why is it that someone who would require such ‘exacting standards’ for this topic would, with no concrete evidence presented, give a pass to CAGW hysteria based on ‘might’ , ‘could’ happen in a hundred years! Selective precicision on a topic like illegal immigration is very revealing of your world view and your (political) science”

        I have to ask – from what I posted, why would you assume that I “give a pass to CAGW hysteria” ?
        It doesn’t say much for your comprehension skills.

  11. “The effects of building a massive concrete wall range from increased emissions to blocked wildlife migration routes.”
    But not “carbon” emissions from Portland cement manufacture. Most of the carbon dioxide released from cement production is taken back into the concrete when the cement hydrates.
    https://wattsupwiththat.com/2016/11/21/whoops-turns-out-concrete-is-actually-a-carbon-sink/
    “Irvine, Calif. – Cement manufacturing is among the most carbon-intensive industrial processes, but an international team of researchers has found that over time, the widely used building material reabsorbs much of the CO2 emitted when it was made.”

    The WUWT article was published last November. Actually, the hydration reaction for concrete setting and carbonation was worked out decades ago. Here is the word from the Portland Cement Association:
    http://www.cement.org/for-concrete-books-learning/concrete-technology/concrete-design-production/concrete-as-a-carbon-sink
    To gain the nihil obstat and imprimatur, there is the obligatory genuflection to UN IPCC at the end.

    • The sink is not nearly as large as the production because the raw material is quite different from the final one.

      Concrete is highly CO2 ‘positive’. So what? The net benefits are enormous.

      Steel reinforcing bars are also CO2 positive, big time. Net benefits? Enormous.

      Storm => Teacup

    • Neil, many decades indeed, I learned this as an engineering student in the 1950s.The issue wasn’t CAGW then, simply that concrete gains strength throughout it’s lifetime by this reaction. Plasters and mortars, too.

  12. When Martin Gardner (Mathematical Games) left, they lost me. That was about the time they started drifting off the reservation of real science.

      • I gave up when Martin Gardner went mad and drew a version of the Laffer Curve that was just a squiggle, and then pretended that his squiggle was an economic refutation of Reagan’s supply side hypothesis. Or was it his demand side hypothesis? Long time ago, but Gardner was so far off base that it undermined the whole veracity (?) of SA.

  13. What about the Great Wall of China then. Shouldn’t that be torn down if walls are bad. And how about Hadrians wall, I guess that will have to go as well.

    • No. Keep the Wall. According to a British colleague from south of Hadrian’s Wall, the wall last served its purpose in 1746, keeping the rebellious Scots at bay. This apparently prompted a verse in the British National Anthem. Details here:
      http://www.aforceforgood.org.uk/precious/anthem1
      My colleague noted that the Scots remain rebellious to this day, thus justifying keeping Hadrian’s Wall in good repair.

      • Hadrian’s wall isn’t on the border.

        http://www.english-heritage.org.uk/visit/places/hadrians-wall/history/

        I admire the artist’s impression with the high speed train on top but won’t it mainly be an upgrading and extension of the current sections of fence?

        ‘This is the night mail crossing the Border,
        Bringing the cheque and the postal order,
        Letters for the rich, letters for the poor,
        The shop at the corner, the girl next door.
        Pulling up Beattock, a steady climb:
        The gradient’s against her, but she’s on time.’

  14. Your photo illustration, is it a shot of Hadrian’s Wall in Scotland? The Romans built it to keep the Highlanders out. A curious side-effect of that was it also kept the Romans out of the highlands thus insuring the safety of the Romans. Stand Fast Craigellachie!

    • Actually the Romans built the wall to keep out the Picts they concluded were uncivilisable barbarians. The Picts strolled the beaches stark naked, apparently unlike the modern civilised. They also invented nudist camps, I presume.

      Can’t have that…

      Without them Hannibal would not have successfully crossed the Alps and defeated the Romans so Hadrian was right!

      • Picts in the Alps riding elephants? Unlikely.
        The wall according to some archeologists was designed more to control movement to and fro so that goods could be taxed and the chances of attacks reduced. It would have been unlikely to stop mass invasions by Picts.

      • Just like Britain planting the Great Hedge of India (2,500 miles ~4,000 km)to control salt & sugar taxes.

    • Er …… OldGuy, Hadrian’s wall is in England. The Antonine Wall is in Scotland but was a wall too far for the Romans.
      But yes the photo looks like Hadrian’s effort.

  15. Climate and Environmental Activists are saying this? So it must be true. Scientific American should publish their sources of these comments so we can pin point the origin of stupidity. These idiots need to be held accountable for spreading more junk science.

  16. Just being the Devil’s Advocate here…..
    We in Canada, along the TransCan Hiway, thro the Rocky Mtn. parks, had so much road-kill that they fenced-off the Hi’way. Notwithstanding the fact that they installed the occasional over-bridge for migratory/transitioning wildlife (not well adopted, if I remember correctly) there is now apparently genetic evidence of the impact of such a barrier in terms of divergent evolution of more-or-less separated herds.
    Just saying …..

    • And, to follow up, if one views the whole topic thro’ the lens of migratory movement, are the Mexicans not trying to re-establish hereditary territory long-since lost to the land-grasping Americans?
      My casual observation is that they’re well on their way to achieving that goal … too late to bolt the stable-door?
      In haste to go and hide in my bunker, incognito ……

      • It’s part of the Coudenhove-Kalergi plan. Enhance globalization by mongrelizing humanity through migration and cross-breeding.

      • “fthoma2014 January 27, 2017 at 8:07 pm

        It’s part of the Coudenhove-Kalergi plan. Enhance globalization by mongrelizing humanity through migration and cross-breeding.”

        Better than inter-breeding ancient Egyptian style.

    • Your information must be old. The have motion sensor cameras on the crossing and they are regularly used by ungulates/bears/wolves/Cougars and lots of other little critters. They adapted well to the overpass types. Not as well in the tunnel types But they work.

    • You ought to visit Langtree, Texas, so you can get a sense of what it’s like before writing a comment about “herds”. I remember sitting by the Rio Grande with my children watching the illegals wade the river and walk into the bushes. Most of them are caught eventually, but I don’t recall seeing any herds in the area, other than domestic cattle. I suppose there’s deer and coyotes crossing back and forth, but I wouldn’t worry if somehow Mexican deer started looking a bit more Mexican or whatever.

    • Don’t take biologists’words without a dose of salt. The discipline is not as bad as social science in that it has science in it but it has been corrupted in the same way by “progressive” justification of means by the planned ends. Some, like Jim Steele, held firmly on to ethical objective standards. For most, Paul Ehrlich is the poster boy.

    • On the TransCanada Highway through Banff National Park, there are 44 wildlife crossing structures (6 overpasses and 38 underpasses) and 82 km (51 miles) of highway fencing. That’s about 1 crossing every 2 km, and they are well-used by wildlife. Even some birds use the crossings, which are designed to look and feel natural. It’s certainly better than roadkill, not to mention that it’s safer for the humans too.

    • Don’t take biologists’words without a dose of salt. The discipline is not as bad as social science in that it has science in it but it has been corrupted in the same way by “progressive” justification of means by the planned ends. Some, like Jim Steele, held firmly on to ethical objective standards. For most, Paul Ehrlich is the poster boy. Although those under 50 may not know they were brainwashed in university.

  17. Let’s look on the bright side climate alarmists, the more illegal aliens America deports the lower our carbon emissions will be and since most of the countries these people come from have much lower standards of living their personal carbon emissions will be greatly reduced so it’s a win-win in the fight against man made global warming.

  18. I am absolutely sure that once President Trump is informed that climate alarmists are claiming that building a wall will impact the climate he will abandon the wall – yep absolutely sure.

    What a bunch of baloney.

  19. I wonder what they think a city looks like to migratory wildlife? Are all the acres and acres of buildings not in effect, a wall? How about highways? Railroads? Even farmland looks like a wall to a lot of wildlife (though just like a buffet to other wildlife). And what, pray tell, do they think a field of solar panels or two upon row of windmills looks like to wildlife?

    If we were going to be governed by what walls do to wildlife, we’have no cities, no long distance transportation, and no food.

    • Oh, and my understanding has always been that most of the border with Mexico is the Rio Grande. Frankly, that’s pretty problematic in terms of building a wall or even a fence. But is there a lot of wildlife (other than what can fly over both a river and a fence) that migrates across the Rio Grande?

      (Yes, that’s a serious question)

    • And what of the Trans Texas Corridor scheme? That would have prevented even farmers/ranchers from moving their machinery/cattle from one of their fields on one side to another of their fields on the other side. I wonder if anyone raised any alarm about animal migration in that case?

    • Coyotes and other animals have adapted wonderfully to suburbia homes in the southwest. They love eating dogs, for example. Deer populations in suburbs and cities in the Northeast are now higher in some places than in the countryside where I live. No hunters in those places, lots of roads and barriers and fences but the deer just hop right over these.

      • Takes at least a 9 ft fence to stop mule deer. I had an 8 ft but they jumped over that flat-footed (they had incentive—I was after them). At 9 feet, so far, so good. I may need to go to 10 ft if they figure out how to clear the current one. Out-rigging also slows them down—a fence with a second one or two wires 3 feet out from the first. Makes them jump both up and over at two heights. That’s worked for about two years now. Keeping deer out is an expensive proposition. A nine foot fence is not cheap. Plus, you have to maintain the fence because one opening and they never forget.

        These deer are hunted (by me and others) but the allowed number of permits is lower and bucks only now. People have no idea what damage deer do. They just see Walt Disney (who lied about everything wildlife). It’s very scary. (Note: I was here first—the deer are the interlopers.)

        If the border wall is not ten feet or more, the deer may not care, assuming any are actually migrating.

    • Of course, you’d want to bring water to the Baja. The Columbia River has an outflow of 2 million gallons per second. US consumption is 1,000 gallons per person per day. So it could supply 170 million people.


      • BTW, the aqueduct could generate $60 billion/yr in water bills to pay off the construction loans (hey, China has lots of money) assuming $15/month/person (household average water bill in the US is $30/month) and assuming non-residential users pay an equal amount per person (they actually use 90% of the water but at a tenth the rate). If this is a trillion dollar project, it could be paid off with interest in 20 years. Ain’t statistics grand?

  20. Hey, can I insert images?
    [img]http://i.imgur.com/HlnwnVD.jpg[/img]

    [Not that way, just put the URL in without brackets or tags -mod]

  21. Beyond belief but not surprised right. I had a brilliant personal moment when I stopped debating the Left and started treating them with contempt. Rushing to see my hard left older brother in 1989 after the wall came down in the country of our birth I was prepared for a tiny bit of crow eating. Instead he looked out over the Pacific and said quietly into the distance “and that is why I believe the government should control the economy” I almost tumbled off the balcony to my demise. I left his home completely gob smacked and free of the belief that he was intelligent.

    We have said it many times… AGW has become a cult with these folks. It hasn’t been about science in forever. Jim Jones would have loved this stuff.

      • Not to worry. Have not given him up just not looking up to him as I once did. Today he lives high in the mountains hurling down t hunderbolts mainly about climate change on the great unwashed. Of which I am happy to be one.

      • So Madonna’s unconditional love for the lost will work? People make choices. They have to live by them. I will not bail out stupid people, whether I share their DNA or not.

  22. Further proof that Global Warming is used as a vehicle for every cause the radical left has.

    Controlling illegal immigration makes climate change worse.
    This one is a keeper, just like Feminist Glaciology.

    Whenever someone on the left complains about “bringing politics into science”, slap them in the face with this.

    • TonyL January 27, 2017 “Controlling illegal immigration makes climate change worse. Whenever someone on the left complains about “bringing politics into science”, slap them in the face with this.”

      As if any liberal would actually hear and understand this message

      • Politics entered science when super politician for life Al Gore started creating propaganda for the cause.

    • A popular additive, improves performance and cuts down heat of hydration that can lead to cracking in large pours. The Romans had the right idea with pozzolan, probably some in Hadrian’s wall.

  23. Good fences (or walls) make for good neighbors. And in this case, the taller the fence (or wall) the better the relationship between the US and Mexico will be.

  24. What mass animal migration?

    Buffalo? Caribou? Polar Bears? Elk? Reindeer?

    I don’t think so..

    The ONLY animal invasion that will be thwarted by The Wall is of the illegal alien human variety..

  25. The Great Wall of China is often termed “a fantastic architectural and engineering wonder”. It is a work of art and a global tourist attraction.

    The Great Wall of Mexico (since they are paying for most of it we should be gracious enough to name it after them) should match the majesty of the great wall on the other side of the world. I suggest that the existing 1% for art, from all federal projects, be diverted to the wall project; then call the Great Wall of Mexico an artistic and architectural wonder.

    Over time finish out the entire wall as “walkable”, and even build it through the rough terrain (similar to the China version). The tourist walkers could then observe the many wildlife migrations in person, without disturbing said wildlife. The route from the Pacific to the Gulf of Mexico could also be ADA accessable.

    Wall sponsorships (private or commercial) can be peddled at $5,000 per foot. Tower sponsorships (similar to the China wall “towers”) can be had for $200,000 (plus annual retainer).

    We got art, we got eco-tourism, we got “walkable”, wonderful architecture, handicapped friendly, income generation, reality tv races from coast to gulf. We got it all.

    • If border walls create “increased emissions,” then the Great Wall of China must produce an awfully large amount. How come environmentalists don’t tell China: “Tear down this wall!”

      • DonM
        “The tourist walkers could then observe the many wildlife migrations in person, without disturbing said wildlife.”
        “The tourist walkers could then observe the many wildlife migrations in person, and buy permits to throw wet sponges, or something, at them.”

        Better – and more income . . ..

        Auto

  26. Perhaps DJT should call it a pest-exclusion wall. Australia has the longest fence in the world stretching over 2000 miles to keep rabbits, emus and other pests out of the pastoral areas of Western Australia since 1907. Google rabbit proof fence. I have not seen a word on it that it affects climate in that time. But you could get some funds to research the issue if you applied.

  27. Can someone explain why young guys leave scool to migrate north when there’s already enough VW, Audi, Ford suppliers and Final assembly plants in Mexico.

    Lack of local telenovelas?

  28. The decline and fall of SciAm to the extent that it is barely distinguishable from Mad Magazine is very sad. I am old enough to remember when it was a serious publication and with my fellow nerdy friends, looked forward to reading it when it came in the mail

    • Chuck L., how dare you insult a quality publication like Mad Magazine by comparing it to Scientific American!!!!

      The magazine that brought us:
      The Towering Sterno
      Star Blech!
      Spy vs. Spy, and on the very rare occasion, Spy vs. Spy vs. Spy

      (lol)

  29. The wall should be built and Mexico should willingly pay. They’re going to want to keep the gringos out in a few years.

    • You’ve been watching too much fiction on TV and at the movies. Bit like your understanding of this rock we live on, you believe in the fiction spouted by “climate scientists”.

    • Tony: Not if the “gringos” have American cash and/or use prodigious quantity of free-lance pharmaceuticals.

      In hundreds of years, Mexico has not really achieved civility. America and Canada did (at least a bit for a while) but Mexico remains violent and caught in corruption. I don’t understand why, but that’s the way it is.

  30. How blindingly stupid are these people? A wall can be built of many things; brick, concrete, wire, wood, patrols, surveillance, armed forces, mined border, nuclear waste, etc. Think of the DMZ between North and South Korea. There is travel between the countries but the channel is narrow.

    A “wall” can be built of matter or force, but it will be secure.

    There is not problem with having a secure border unless you intend to go around it (with drugs). One reason Mexico might oppose US control of the border is that the constant wiring of funds to Mexico by Mexicans in the US amounts to 20% of Mexico’s GNP. And, it is sure that drug traffic is a large part of the money generated and wired to Mexico.

  31. Isn’t the entire reason why the average person violates our border in the first place so they can exponentially increase the carbon footprint for themselves and their entire family?

  32. I am not sure how it will happen, but some how, some way, building this wall will also decimate the polar bears as well.

    • Hmmmm…we could actually introduce polar bears to that area thereby expanding their range.

      Problem with this whole border situation: Mexico and our own government have been playing us for chumps for 30 years on this issue. No most people in the US do not want a wholesale change in our culture. When exactly has that worked out well and been welcomed by anyone anywhere at anytime?

      Like climate change this is an article of blind faith on the Left. In the US I am really starting to beleive that we are France of the 1930s. The divide has become to wide to cross. Hard days ahead.

    • Tim on January 27, 2017 at 8:48 pm

      I am not sure how it will happen, but some how, some way, building this wall will also decimate the polar bears as well.

      – when for the convenience of counting every polarbear needs his own chunk of drift ice on the Colorado River then the environmental thesis of polarbears is nullified.

  33. Hummm, frankly,,,, the wall needs to be a financial wall. Eliminate the attraction for those coming here illegally to make money and or garner free benefits, and they don’t come. Quite simple really. The amount of cash sent back to Mexico, untaxed, is amazing. Google it.

    • No reason not to do both. I like the idea of taxing monies being wired across our borders just as a general proposition.

  34. Oh well. Seems the CAGW druids did not read the GPL letter that shows CAGW is a psychological manifestation of queer proportions.

    Ha ha

  35. What a joke this magazine is. If they were really worried about climate change they would want to keep people in Mexico where they would remain poor and consume few resources and produce fewer emissions. The carbon footprint of the average Joe in Mexico is about equivalent to a pair of size 11 wingtips. He moves to the U.S. And his carbon footprint becomes the size of Manhattan.

    • I am modelling my carbon footprint after AlGore’s. This weekend I need to spend a few hours cruising in the SUV.

  36. The point being, to telegraph that they will tie this up in litigation for decades of environmental impact statements, IMHO.
    (lurker waving from the cheap seats)

  37. This is as “scientific” as the Scientific American’s endorsement of Nuclear Winter back in the 1980’s.
    It was then and is now a phonied up bit of politics hiding under a veneer of sciencey sounding claims.

  38. In the US, the per capita carbon emissions are 17+ metric tons per year. In Mexico it is only 4 metric tons per year.

    Now multiply that by 20 million illegal aliens that are here but should be back in their low CO2 emitting home country, and Trump could easily fund his entire border wall and increased immigration enforcement as a climate change mitigation effort.

  39. I am sure the migrants in Germany also cause climate change, or not? Perhaps they counteract against the “Wall” to Mexico. We have a lot experience with “Wall” (I remember Ronald Reagan shouting:” Mr. Gorbachow, tear down this wall!”)

  40. Any interruption of the drug trade will harm the climate.
    On the one hand normally stoned US citizens will be deprived of pleasure and might even try to get a job.
    Any job will increase the individual’s carbon footprint.
    These reckless policies will produce sea level rise of several kilometres and Venus like temperatures.
    Think of your grandchildren get a fix and chill.

  41. I am at a loss to know whether Hadrian’s wall has made the UK hotter or colder. Does it depend on the side? No idea.

    • I suppose it raised tempers in our ancestors. The other point is that is not a 1000 miles long, made of concrete and 30 feet tall. Apparently for the same price you could build a high speed rail network in the US itself. I wonder which one would be most economically useful?

      • Build the wall with a rail link on top, develop the border regions of the southern US , cover the north side with solar panels and use them to power the trains, just to screw with the heads of the greens.

      • Gareth

        I would not be too upset about poor Mexicans trying to get work in the USA if all that was to it.

        However the drug trade has got completely out of hand on the Mexican side.
        The Mexican police are totally outgunned and now rely on the army to intervene.
        The drug trade is worth tens of billions of dollars.
        Thats why the drug barons are located near the border.
        The numbers of killings make it sound like a War Zone and then there is all the misery and lost futures of the poor drug users.

        No responsible Government in the USA could tolerate the drug traffic going on .
        So a wall to help stop all that is a price worth paying .

      • Of course the wall will stop tunnels. Its base will extend far below ground. That’s a major part of its design.

      • Martin Clark .

        It might stop or curtail most of the problem but of course other techniques can also be used.
        Sonic sensors to detect unusual ground activity and so on

        https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mexican_Drug_War

        The Mexican Government will need to get a grip.

        Say what you like about Castro and Cuba but they prove that determined action can crush the drug barons.

      • David Dirkse

        To stop drones radar would help.
        Banning all drones within 10 miles of each side of border (with heavy penalties for non compliance) would also help
        The Mexican government must also take drastic action against the drug parasites.
        Failure to do so will give rise to the suspicion that they are getting paid by the drug barons to look the other way

      • OK Bryan, now we have a wall, sonic sensors, radar……you don’t get it do you? For every measure you take, there’s a way around it. As long as the demand is there, the supply will follow. Trying to choke off the supply hasn’t worked since the beginning of the “War on Drugs.” A wall isn’t going to solve the problem. Maybe we need to cure people’s addiction instead.

      • David Dirkse

        You would do nothing then?
        Or you might plead with the addicts and drug barons to give it up …..
        Somehow I think your solution is just cr##.

      • Bryan, how about we treat the addicts? You know, like methadone and increasing the number of beds in treatment centers? I’d rather my taxes go to that than a stupid concrete wall on the border that will do nothing to cure the disease.

      • The foundation just needs to extend down to the water table. Any tunnel that tries to go deeper than that will quickly flood out.

      • The water table is so deep and sparse it would take more fence below ground than above it. It’s a desert along the border for a reason.

      • Martin Clark
        January 28, 2017 at 7:57 am

        The deepest and second longest border tunnel ever discovered was 90 feet deep. Most are much shallower than this. The cost soon becomes prohibitive and engineering challenges too great even for the high profit drug business.

        Having a 100 foot-deep base will not only discover existing tunnels and deter new ones, but help detect attempts to dig deeper.

      • The underground portion of the wall of course in most places would be less than 100 feet. But in Nogales, Agua Prieta-Douglas and Tijuana-San Diego, yes.

      • Speaking of water table, in the ’60s it used to lie close to the surface along stretches of the Border, but pumping for irrigation and a burgeoning population had drawn it down to 30 meters by the late ’90s. Dunno where it is now in the Tijuana area, but obviously lower than the 90 feet where the deep tunnel was dug in or before 2006.

  42. The climate impacts of a massive concrete wall running from San Diego to Brownsville, Texas, along the border of the United States and Mexico begin with the source of the materials, Mills said. The production of cement, the material that holds together concrete, is a major source of greenhouse gas emissions.

    By that logic all building and construction – all development – should cease with immediate effect.

    When will they think anything through?

    • Except for turbines and solar panels, “they” would love all development to stop. That’s one of their goals.

  43. Just to clarify something, are Mexicans banned from entering the US? Because if not, won’t they just use a short scheduled flight to enter the US stating they are visiting relatives, then stay? I’m told many do that now, but unless visas become much more strict, how can it be stopped? ( I may be missing something obvious, so apologies!)
    I also see that the numbers of illegal immigrants entering the US from Mexico has fallen substantially over the last 6 years, why is that?

    • I guess you haven’t heard about the “surge” of immigrants from Central and South American over the past couple of years. They’ve been coming by the train load. I suspect that the method of counting illegal immigrants has changed. If they request asylum or refugee status when they enter, they probably don’t get counted as “illegal.” Those in the know have learned to ask for refugee status. That way they get assigned a court day years in the future and can stay until then. Only a few show up for their hearings. The rest are forgotten.

    • You don’t understand the problem. It’s not just “Mexicans”. Mexico is also being inundated with border crashers as well and they provide the conduit to the US. All the failed Socialist states in Central and South America and all the people from other parts of the world that use the Southern US porous border for entry are included. It varies but 12 million seems to be the best guesstimate. California encourages illegal aliens in direct contradiction of the US Constitution and is the primary path they take. It’s an economic problem and has nothing to do with race. The Hispanic populations in California are by and far good citizens, industrious, and assimilate well. The major issue is those that work and live in underground economies and don’t contribute their fair share of taxes and therefore become a burden on those that do.

      • Not to mention that unfriendly governments have been using our porous border to slip in moles and potential saboteurs. Mid easterners, for instance, look a lot like Mexicans. Chinese individuals have also been among those who have been rounded up. In a very real sense, what is going on is an invasion and not any kind of immigration.

      • Anyone have any ideas as why illegal immigrants won’t just take a short tourist flight to the US? I can see Trump forbidding entry visas from dozens more countries, but does that not become impractical? People could still fly to Canada and enter from there.

      • From your post I conclude you don’t do foreign travel. All countries require approval for entrance by air and it’s checked at both ends. “People could still fly to Canada…..” shows you don’t understand the economic status of these people. Why do you think the ME war refugees “just don’t fly to Germany”? You make it sound like there’s no border checks between Canada and the US as well. You clearly are looking for answers as someone who doesn’t have a clue. That’s OK, just don’t criticize those that are in the thick of it and do understand.

      • Gareth,

        If you’re from all but one Latin American country, you still need a valid visa to enter the US, whether from Mexico or Canada. The only Latin American country in the US visa waiver program is Chile, which is considered a First World country, ie a member of OECD, so the assumption is that its citizens won’t overstay their visas, like European countries.

  44. Which is worse for the environment, a wall on the border, or a daily stream of illegal aliens trampling vegetation, killing wild life, and polluting the land and the water with their garbage?

    At some national parks, they limit the number of people who can visit each day. Why do they put up barriers to people there if it’s the barriers that do the most harm? Maybe we should treat the border like a national park and only allow entry at designated locations for people with the correct passes. Now that’s a novel idea.

  45. As well as discussing it’s pros and cons, can we revisit this posting in 12 months to review how Donald and his Giant Wall are progressing? Any bets on whether it will actually be built ?

    • BE built or BEING built?

      The former?.Probably not.

      The latter?. Based on the fact that The Donald has carried out many many of his election promises already (not even a week yet…) I would have to say, absolutely.

      • The good thing about private sector experience, when the boss wants change, change happens immediately. No need for the 100 day theatrics. You’re fired!

      • Here are some facts. The US already has 700 miles of border wall. At present more people are returning to Mexico than are crossing the border into the United States. It has also been shown that immigrants actually help the US economy, not hurt it, and benefit native-born workers. Undocumented immigrants do pay taxes and social security and are far less likely to commit crimes than native-born citizens. Finally, increased border security has not curbed the influx of undocumented people so far. The way to change things is for Mexico to change and the US can do much to facilitate that.

      • How much bigger a trade surplus with the United States would you anticipate being enough to “improve” Mexico?

      • Apologies Gareth, you said “change” not “improve”.

        Does that change come with any “hope” by the way?

      • Gareth: I suppose drug dealers help the economy too. After all, the distributors are very rich and buy lots and lots of goods. Lawbreaking is good for a society, yes? Murderers keep undertakers in business. Drug overdoses benefit undertakers and/or hospitals. Why there’s a whole industry there paying taxes and growing the economy.

        People paid cash rarely fill out tax forms. Illegals are not supposed to have social security numbers. (My understanding is they buy the numbers, so that is an economic benefit, of course for one country or the other. And there’s the coyotes that make money smuggling people across the border. Human trafficking. It’s all so lucrative.)

        You and Madonna would get along well—unconditional love for those who murder, rape and overrun countries that they do not belong in. A true Utopia, I’m sure.

      • Jones, while I think that President Trump is quite capable of efficiently and effectively directing a building project of this magnitude, I think he is going to run into the reality of Government contracting. As in every -ism, -ilogy, -ology, and special interest that has attracted a Senator’s attention over the past 120 years is hard wired into Government contracts by Congressionaly enacted laws. He can not EO those laws out of existence. Unfortunately.

  46. Scotland has a colder climate than England does. If only the Romans had not built Hadrian’s Wall things would be different!

  47. The laws of the United States must be enforced one way or another and enforcing our laws is one of the President’s duities. Mine fields and automated machine guns are an alternative to walls. I would rather we had the walls. We should join with Mexico and make illegal immigration a felony just like it is in Mexico.

    • And just like it is about everywhere else in the world. Try getting into Japan, or the UK, or just about any non-US First World country as an undocumented migrant. You will not have a pleasant experience. (That includes Germany, their recent sudden love affair with indiscriminately welcoming the young and violent from Middle Eastern war zones notwithstanding.)

  48. In two thousand years time there will be thousands of tourist visiting the Trump wall. It will be seen from outer space. And the 2545th president of the USA, Ping Lee Wang, will be inaugurated in the shade of this extraordinary feat of Engineering carried out by the simple folk of the 21st century.

  49. I wonder how the wall builders will cope with the shifting course of Rivers in the path of the wall?
    By the way, my nephew is emigrating to the US next week. he had qualifications that were required in that country and tells me he found the emigration process pretty straightforward. Do well qualified Mexicans follow the same path? or is it a bit more challenging for them?

    • It is not necessary to build walls in excess of the river. There would be a garrison frontier soldiers better. In addition, you can also move a wall back half a mile from a river. This would not reduce the area of the US. Also, controlled border crossings for ranchers and their livestock and Americans and Mexicans living near the border would have to be. It would not be a foreclosure like the iron curtain between Eastern and Western Europe. Only illegal immigrants should be better protected. Not every border traffic is to be made impossible. Even further, even after Trump, controlled entry should be possible. Also of workers, as far as they are needed in the USA. I as a European see e.g. Not that I have to apply for an entry visa for the USA and have to submit a proof of work or a green card for an immigration. Illegal Mexicans, however, sneak this right.

    • Congress decides immigration quotas of how many and from what countries. It also cost money on both sides. Having a desirable/needed occupation and money helps like immigration to any country. You don’t have rich illegal aliens that are doctors sneaking across the border.

  50. I used to be an avid reader of SA, a go to journal for overviews of breakthrough scientific developments. No longer. What a debauched rag it is now. In the politest terms I can think of, my message to SA is
    Shut up. Just shut the hell up.

  51. Laudato Si
    http://w2.vatican.va/content/francesco/en/encyclicals/documents/papa-francesco_20150524_enciclica-laudato-si.html

    III. LOSS OF BIODIVERSITY
    (brent comments. This section could just as well have been written by E.O. Wilson, and Paul Ehrlich with an able assist from David Foreman of Earth First!( And head of the Wildlands Project. Item 35 is ideology straight from the Wildlands textbook )

    35. In assessing the environmental impact of any project, concern is usually shown for its effects on soil, water and air, yet few careful studies are made of its impact on biodiversity, as if the loss of species or animals and plant groups were of little importance. Highways, new plantations, the fencing-off of certain areas, the damming of water sources, and similar developments, crowd out natural habitats and, at times, break them up in such a way that animal populations can no longer migrate or roam freely. As a result, some species face extinction. Alternatives exist which at least lessen the impact of these projects, like the creation of biological corridors, but few countries demonstrate such concern and foresight. Frequently, when certain species are exploited commercially, little attention is paid to studying their reproductive patterns in order to prevent their depletion and the consequent imbalance of the ecosystem

    The Idea of biological corridors is straight from the Wildlands Project: Dave Foreman prime architect of this.
    Wildlands Project
    http://resistagenda21.com/agenda-21/15-2/

    The Green Agenda
    “My three main goals would be to reduce human population to about 100 million worldwide, destroy the industrial infrastructure and see wilderness, with its full complement of species,
    returning throughout the world.”
    -Dave Foreman, co-founder of Earth First!
    http://green-agenda.com/

  52. Was the S A concerned about the wall in 2006 when Hillary, Obama, Schumer, Reied and a lot of Democrats voted for the bipartisan Bill which authorized the wall which passed Congress and was signed by President Bush? Of course when Obama became President he stopped the construction so Trump does not need another bill through Congress. Were they all those Democrats racist then if not why?

    • Democrats are not racists. Together with their own “leibeigenen” press, they are losers of the presidential election in which they have been pulled out of all damp dreams by a constructionist who happens to be a billionaire and now determines politics. They do not like the fact that an outsider takes the iniative to themselves. It’s that simple. Elitist thinking. In Germany there is a saying: some have only imagination as education.

      • “Democrats are not racists.”

        Historically they were. Currently they are the party of identity politics which runs contrary to the concept of judging people by the content of their character not the color of their skin.

  53. I guess it does have some effect.

    Balkan wildlife faces extinction threat from border fence to control …
    https://www.theguardian.com › Environment › Wildlife
    11 Aug 2016 – Razor-wire fence built by Slovenia is killing wildlife. … by a razor wire fence designed to stop migrants crossing into Europe is mounting, …. The upper Kolpa valley was scarcely affected by last year’s refugee flows, and many … had been a 50% decline in regional tourism revenues since the wall was built.

    Fences put up to stop refugees in Europe are killing animals | New …
    https://www.newscientist.com/…/dn28685-fences-put-up-to-stop-refugee

  54. Canada is building a wall by imposing a carbon tax on everyone. That will keep out many American migrants and tourists. It will also encourage Canadians to migrate to America where there is not carbon tax and cheaper fuel costs, etc. Now that’s a wall that is very effective and is quite inexpensive. Not only does it satisfy the greenies in Canada, but it does have the effect of decreasing global warming by at least .0003 degrees by 2055. As well, it will decrease Canada’s deficit and help to balance the budget by itself, as predicted by the current prime minister, Just In Trudeau.

  55. Completely off topic, but in need of correction:

    Phillip Gareth wrote: “Undocumented immigrants do pay taxes and social security….”

    #1. How does an undocumented immigrant pay social security? In order for an employer to deduct social security contributions from a pay check, the employee must produce a social security card. And for what it’s worth; stealing and then using someone else’s SS number is a crime and a nightmare for the real owner of the social security number.

    #2. Undocumented immigrants pay SALES tax on consumable goods. If they are paid in cash for labor rendered, they do not pay employment taxes; which robs the federal government of Medicare funds; among other things. There’s a big difference and it’s disingenuous and quite frankly, dishonest to say the undocumented immigrants pay…”taxes.”

    • Just about the only taxes that illegals pay are sales taxes – simply because they are charged at the cash register. Illegals usually have SS cards with fake or stolen numbers – the Social Security Administration doesn’t care if the number is legit or not, they just happily rake in the money. Why the SSA hasn’t been tagged to identify the fake numbers (they can’t be expected to tag stolen numbers) is a mystery to me.

    • No, if undocumented immigrants had an empire with many companies whose activities would benefit the United States, they would not need to pay any direct taxes. But they would have to pay indirect taxes because the documented workers of these companies had to pay a tax. And the leaders had to pay for their own because they are billionaires, they also had to pay higher taxes for higher consume, and last but not least the workers of the leaders companys had to pay taxes for their own consum use. Thus, several taxes would have been incurred, although perhaps the corporate leader paid no taxes. This reminds me however also to Zuckerberg, Google, Microsoft, Apple etc ,. in Europe. Since there is a seat in Ireland, there is nowhere else tax. And there in Ireland, very, very little.

    • I wouldn’t know…

      Donald Trump’s income tax returns are protected by law, (just as yours are; assuming you file yearly tax returns. And just like you, Donald Trump’s tax returns are not for public review (unless he releases them) and not doing so, in no way disqualifies him for ANY public office.

      Everyone pays “sales” tax….your point is?

      • @ Alan Robertson.
        “Gareth Phillips isn’t a US citizen. His tongue is forked”

        And your tongue Alan is also f**ked due to your complete inability to see any valid lifestyle or culture beyond your own border .

      • @Gareth Phillips-
        I see plenty of what is going on in the rest of the world, as well as my own nation. I see that you always speak from an agenda, regardless of what the truth of things might be. That’s how you earned the forked tongue.

    • Trump has paid a lot of property and sales taxes alone, without even considering income tax.

      Even at just one percent per annum, he would pay $30 million annually on three billion dollars’ worth of real estate. Higher than that in Miami.

      • How do you know? he has never released tax returns and reclaims any owed tax by claiming he has lost billions in dollars.The only information is that which has been leaked. When some conscientious IRS employee releases his record to Wikileakes, I suspect there will be a constitutional crisis. We know he is a tax avoider and abuser of employees, but it there are no records of him ever paying tax and not reclaiming it. He did occasionally divert tax claims it into his “Charity” in order to buy more oil paintings of himself, but don’t kid yourself. he is a serial tax avoider.

      • Gareth,

        I know because the property and sales tax rates in the jurisdictions in which his properties are located are a matter of public record.

        Maybe you are unfamiliar with the tax systems in the various United States.

        There is no way for DJT not to pay property and sales taxes. Totally separate issues from his income taxes. End of story.

      • Some free education for you, Gareth, on US tax systems:

        http://www.crainsnewyork.com/article/20161006/REAL_ESTATE/161009921/donald-trump-actually-does-pay-taxes

        His property taxes on properties he owns outright in his own name are available from the jurisdictions in which they are located. For holding companies, it’s hard to know what portion he pays as opposed to his partners, but that can be estimated.

        What compels you to comment on topics about which you are clearly totally ignorant?

      • Your opinion of her personal credibility and attire doesn’t matter. What does matter is that her statement was objectively factual, ie Trump has paid hundreds of millions in excise, sales, property, payroll and other taxes in the past decade, and his employees even more.

      • When he releases his income tax returns, we’ll know what dirty little secret he’s embarrassed of.

        PS, what his employees pay is irrelevant. I’m sure he’s cheated more money out of his contractors than he’s paid in payroll taxes.

      • Last I checked, if Conway says the sky is blue, it doesn’t suddenly turn purple with pink polka-dots. It’s still blue. In the real world, at any rate. Don’t know what world you’re living in.

    • Gareth.

      No, Very few Illegals pay any income tax at all it is a false claim to fool the uninformed. You are probably unaware of the US tax code and the fact that most of the illegals as well as many other Citizens including many younger men get paid “under the table” and do not report their income to the IRS at all. Have you ever seen the team that works for landscape services, cutting the grass of the elites and even many other better neighborhoods. I can say when my kids were younger the jobs they wanted were under the table pay, zero taxes, you might be surprised how frequent. Now those jobs are all taken up by illegals. Every community has a “pick up” point where construction and landscaping go to pick up a day worker where no salary is reported for a days work.

      On the other side the few jobs where income is reported, the actual income claimed is below that where income tax is due, and in fact these cases do not pay anything but receive money back from the IRS under a republican plan called “earned income credit” Many claim all their children in Mexico and exaggerate the “bonus” from the tax payer. or other. See below:

      https://www.irs.gov/credits-deductions/individuals/earned-income-tax-credit

      The claim that illegals pay significant taxes is another liberal lie, they know it but try to deceive the the fools.

      • When these illegal Mexicans are claiming their children on their tax returns, are they using the Social Security numbers given to their children by the Mexican government? And please tell me what Social Security number they are using to get the EIC in the first place?

  56. The wall will have crossing points for wildlife, which will be guarded against human immigrants, and for legal traffic.

    In built-up areas, the most important part of the wall will be below ground, to block the tunnels running from inside buildings in Tijuana, for example, to structures in SoCal.

  57. The obvious solution to illegal immigration is to make 100% of any monies earned illegal and subject to confiscation by the feds to shut down money flowing into Mexico.

  58. “You tend to find a lot of BS, I don’t know if we can call it the other version on camera, so we’ll just call it ‘bad science.'”

  59. Scientific American long ago gave up any pretense of scientific anything. In order to increase its circulation, it tried to compete with Popular Science. Then it became political, and on all issues where it can lean left, it plunges in that direction. It’s sad, but not as pathetic as watching what has happened to colleges across the country.

  60. And has SciAm stated when they will publish their study on the climate, environmental and effect to species diversity catastrophe that is and will be caused by the Wind Turbines? Will this report be released before, after or along with the health effects that these massive multi-megawatt wind turbines inflict upon all animal life within 1/4 to 1/2 mile? Or is that “Fake News” going to be kept buried until it can no longer be denied? There is a local strip mall that has a wind turbine at the far corner of the parking lot. It has mostly trendy “green Lover” stores. I went there because one of these establishments had something I was looking for. I marveled at the use of wind energy when I saw the wind turbine. Within 15 minutes of walking in the store though, I had to leave. I had a feeling that I had eaten something that was going to make me throw up. Several days later, I went back to again purchase the item. Same problem again. Sales rep said that several people have stated that they feel “uncomfortable” in the store. Wonder how much business he is losing? [If you are a denier of the effects of sub-audio and very low frequency effects, due to your indoctrination from the GW propaganda, then I suggest you visit a local 2 MW wind turbine site and observe for yourself the effect it has on cattle and horses. ]

  61. The author of the E&E “Climatewire” piece, republished by SA, is a longtime, rapid environmental activist/journalist. The whole nonsense argument is based on the false idea that the “wall” will be just that — a huge concrete wall from San Diego to Brownsville — an idiotic idea.

    They even stir up “controversy” amongst the Architects — who have not been asked to design said imaginary wall — and who are quoted as stating they won’t design it — as if anyone has asked them to design an imaginary object existing only in the eyes of enviro-nuts.

    It seems that the Editors of American have all lost their senses or quit and gone home — no one is holding any journalist in the MSM or the Journals to any kind of journalistic standard at all — every “news” article reads like the Opinion Page.

    • Notice that in at least some of these instances, rebuttals have appeared on the websites of SciAm and others within minutes of President Trump’s executive order being announced.
      I think it is safe to say in such cases that little thought was given to their responses.
      Not that the ones that they take more time formulating are any more sensible…but at least in such cases it is clear they speak first and think later, if indeed they ever get around to doing any actual brainwork.

  62. ‘The production of cement, the material that holds together concrete, is a major source of greenhouse gas emissions.’

    Would you be happier little girl if it was built with steel? H/T Archie Bunker

  63. Let’s see:
    Electing Trump was a “climate mistake”.
    Christmas is a “climate mistake”.
    Having kids is a “climate mistake”.
    Humans are “climate mistakes”.
    Yup, it fits the ideology.

  64. “And climate activists say that President Trump’s border wall with Mexico and other efforts to keep people out represent a backward effort to stem a tide of migration that would be better addressed at its source: in places where climate impacts are already happening.”

    Are these assclowns at SciAm seriously asserting that the reason that millions of people from Central America and Mexico illegally enter the US is due to climate impacts?
    And just what are they proposing in terms of addressing these imagined climate impacts?
    Oh, I know…maybe we could have a free trade pacts in which hundreds of factories are relocated from Mexico, where environmental laws are weak and emissions are greater, to the US, which has far stricter controls on emissions?
    Not that this would have the slightest impact on climate, but it would make a lot of people here in the US feel a lot better, even if it was not the lackwits at SciAm and the Sierra Club that had their peace of mind enhanced.

  65. Hey…regarding emissions from concrete…these numbskulls really need to keep up with the current research and findings.
    Turns out that cement absorbs back CO2 over time, making either a net wash or even a CO2 sink, overall.
    I think we may have discovered why so called “climate scientists” need spend so much money on a supposedly settled subject…they are incapable of incorporating new knowledge into their worldview, and are likewise unable to hold more than one thought in mind at a time.
    This idjuts seem to not know the difference between running on a hamster wheel and going somewhere.

  66. Let’s see, walls are imperfect so we can’t build one. Wind turbines are imperfect so let’s build more. Definately NO SCIENCE in any of this.

  67. The article’s minor emphasis on the wall adding to climate change is silly, but I agree with some of it’s points about environmental damage to migratory wildlife.

    I don’t think we need a physical wall. What we need is to stop the incentives for people to enter illegally in the first place. Employment is the biggest, of course, and Trump wants to make a better, more flexible guest worker program. He has his finger on other big items, like ending automatic citizenship. But there are many others, like free public education and easy access to the social safety net. There should be big penalties for identity theft and use of SSA numbers by illegal immigrants, and a good systematic way of periodic checking. Nothing makes me angrier as a taxpayer than hearing about illegal immigrants filing for the Earned Income Credit welfare payment using a stolen SSN. We could also lower violent border crime and cripple cartels and gangs, not to mention free up room in our prisons, by ending the monumentally stupid war on drugs.

      • Men and Mic, you are both right. A physical wall won’t stop the determined illegal any more than not leaving the keys in your car will stop a determined car thief … but it will stop those who might steal your car if all they had to do was hop in the drivers and turn the key.
        Add to “the wall” the removal of tax-payer supported incentives…
        Below someone mentioned those who enter legally but overstay their visa. As a start, a database of those here on a visa and then why not require those here legally to periodically “check in” or be “check in on”? (Heck, I have to renew my drivers license every two years and I’m a citizen!) Miss the “check in” and you are now illegal.

    • Unless and until the border is actually secure, any sort of comprehensive immigration reform is impossible.

      • And make E-Verify mandatory. That would take care of a lot of the problem. The system is already in place; the data is already there. So additional costs would be minimal.

        Pemex is the largest component of Mexico’s GDP. Wire transfers from the US is second. How about a “Build the Wall” transaction fee on every transfer?

  68. take some tubes, a motor a propeller and sails, have a plan on the internet, weld your ULM together, and fly over it. there goes your wall. the only reason for the berlin wall to work was that every inch of it was guarded. Oh yes and it didn’t kept east berliners from trying to cross it.

    just a wall in the desert won’t keep people from crossing it, you have to man it in order to be efficient. i think keeping that wall manned, guarded 24/24 7/7 ain’t gonna be cheap.

    • I doubt that anyone advocating a ‘wall’ believes that it won’t have to be monitored 24/7. Frankly, I’d like to see President Trump (I do like typing that) put maybe a 1/2 mile north of the border under military law and let the Army patrol along with ICS. ICS to handle the legal stuff, the Army to handle the monitoring. Also to fire back if those numbnuts south of the border start shooting. Again.

      • Property owners 1/2 mile north of the wall might object to being under military law. Oh, and the 3rd Amendment to the Constitution might be basis for them to sue if it happens.

    • Monitoring it won’t require many more border patrol personnel than now, although Trump advocating beefing up their numbers. Motion detection sensors will also pick up animals, but the software is readily available to recognize human signatures, even under a deer suit.

      Plus, the National Guard can also get more involved than it already is, now that Posse Comitatus is a dead letter. My friends in the Guard were already flying drug interdiction and illegal immigration missions until Obama ordered them stopped.

  69. Speaking of walls and fences … I wonder how long we’ll have to wait before hearing any condemnation of Saudi Arabia whose authorities began building – approximately four years ago (if the BBC is to be believed) …

    Saudi Arabia builds giant Yemen border fence

    Saudi Arabia is building a giant border fence to seal off its troubled frontier with Yemen, Saudi border authorities have told the BBC.

    The 1,800km (1,100-mile) fence is set to run from the Red Sea coast in the west to the edge of Oman in the east.
    […]
    Border security has dramatically worsened in the aftermath of the revolution, as thousands of illegal immigrants, drug smugglers and gun runners try to slip from impoverished Yemen into Saudi Arabia, one of the world’s richest countries, Lt al-Ahmari told the BBC’s Frank Gardner. [my bold -hro]

    Cue continued sounds of deafening silence from all the usual suspects.

    • You may not have read Trumps proposals, but he is not talking about a fence. There is a fence on the US/Mexico border already for much of its length. Trump if you read careful what he is saying wants a wall, 30 feet high, a beautiful wall, the best wall that has ever been built along the complete border. Now while setting aside the practicality and delusions of grandeur implied in such words, it is a very different concept from building a fence between two warring nations. You may like to consider Australia’s Rabbit fence which is the longest in the world, but it is just that, a fence. Does that break the silence for you?

  70. How many years and how much money has been spent (wasted) on CAGW and what have they come up with ?
    From where I’m sitting build the frickin wall man it 24/7 and use all of the money you currently spend trying to prove that Co2 is dangerous on guarding your border .

  71. I would be ashamed and embarrassed at this point if I subscribed to Sci AM or bought it off the rack. Trump is exposing these climate clowns more than Obama did. They are steeping out in a way that let’s more critical thinkers see them for what they are.

  72. As an avid reader of Scoentific American in the 1960s ,including the supplements such as ” cellular operation occurs, energy, mitochondria etc, I find the political corruption within America so overwhelming that it is hard to comprehend.
    I am English and the duping of the public towards scientific untruths is wrong.
    As has been pointed out by such as Martin
    Armstrong, the folks must gird their loins and defend their Country and their future.

    I wish America well and us.
    Roger Welsh

  73. Funny how these ‘scientific’ publications are lock in step with every single Progressive agenda item, scientific or otherwise. You’d almost think they were ideologues that force facts through the prism of their world view.

  74. Let’s take the per capita emissions in Mexico and US and we can calculate the lower level to be achieved if we have a border wall.
    Yet Sierra Club became a supporter of immigration amnesty after a large donation.

  75. The drugs crossing the border mainly come by plane or ship. Tons of it! By container! How can anybody be so short sighted to think he can block drug trafficking by a wall?

    • Drugs enter by personal transport as well and it’s not insignificant. Sending 5000 “mules” across the border with 10kg+ of any drug each and your chances of success are good if not better than investing in several 50,000 kg airplane/boat/submarines. But bringing in contraband is a small part of the issue. It’s against our law to enter our country without permission. One shouldn’t have to justify upholding the law. Work on changing the law instead of subverting it.

      • Yes you are right! It is essentially about illegal immigration. But people are also capable of bypassing, circumnavigating or flying over a wall.
        The only way to prevent this is not to employ people as a nanny or gardener or agricultural worker. But it is customary in the USA to employ a Mexican cleaning woman. So…

  76. Donald Trump….has he funded it ? Because no contractor is going to wait for Mexico to pay for it.

    [Paul Ryan has already said that the money is available for the up-front payment. . . mod]

  77. I imagine the wall will also impact climate change on Mars and Venus, too. At least in the next issue of Sci Am. Can we wall in the Sci Am offices and prevent the out migration of idiocy.

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