There’s A Poop Crisis At The Border
“I’m starting to smell it” Baron Partlow yelled into the estuary that sits between Tijuana and Imperial Beach, a small coastal town in southern California. He was wearing a black shirt with the words “Stop the Poop” in large white letters, high top boots, and plastic gloves, and carrying a respirator.
After a few seconds, he turned to the woman following him around with iPhone and asked if she was smelling it too. She was wearing Nikes.
Partlow, who documents the wastewater that flows from Mexico the United States and then posts the videos to the Stop the Poop page on Facebook, is on the fringe of a very real and serious movement. While the federal government obsesses about the so-called emergency at the border, Imperial Beach are trying to get people to care about a crisis that has nothing to do with migrants.
Every year, the Tijuana River carries millions of gallons of water over the border, bringing trash, chemicals, and poop along for the ride. The problem has gotten so bad that the beaches just north of Mexico are rarely ever open.