Canada, USA and Mexico promise butterfly highway

Pena Nieto, Trudeau and Obama at the National Gallery, Ottawa
via Pena Nieto, Trudeau and Obama at the National Gallery, Ottawa

A decade ago, there was a conspiracy theory going round the internet, about a secret superhighway that was going to be built from Mexico to Canada. Now it is finally happening; At the recent meeting of Prime Minister Trudeau, President Obama and President Enrique Pena Nieto they agreed to build a highway – for butterflies. Is this the thin edge of the wedge?

Ron Paul described the highway a decade ago:

This superhighway would connect Mexico, the United States, and Canada, cutting a wide swath through the middle of Texas and up through Kansas City. Proponents envision a ten-lane colossus the width of several football fields, with freight and rail lines, fiber-optic cable lines, and oil and natural gas pipelines running alongside.

Paul thought the highway was the thin edge of a bigger wedge of full integration of the three countries. What they are building is an even thinner wedge; President Obama calls it a “wildlife corridor.” According to an earlier report in The Verge,

A wildlife corridor is a habitat that connects populations cut off by human activities. The White House plans to allow the Department of Transportation and the Fish and Wildlife Service to rehabilitate the land and vegetation along the highway, allocating resources to educate "target audiences" about conservation efforts, while also working with the Mexican and Canadian governments on broader strategies that cross borders.

There has been significant progress already, according to Mexico's President Enrique Peña Nieto. The transcript:

I would like to use an example to describe our level of integration. The preservation of the monarch butterfly conservation — this is a species that, in its pilgrimage, we can see how our countries are intertwined.

And back in our last summit, we agreed that we would take care of this species and make sure that in its journey, the monarch butterfly from Canada, flying through the United States all the way down to Mexico, and the figures speak for itself. In the year 2014, in our country, the area where butterflies reach — that eventually reached only covered less than one hectare, .6 hectares.

Due to the efforts made by our trilateral task force created for that purpose last year, this year, the surface in my country now extends to 4.1 hectares and we are in route that by 2018, this figure would grow to six hectares and eventually, that would be our goal for the monarch butterfly reserve in — in Mexico. And by that, we will be making sure the migration of this species is the symbol of the relationship that Canada, the United States and Mexico has.

Obama liked this comment, responding:

By the way, Enrique, I love the story about monarch butterflies. They're not just any species — they are spectacular and we want to make sure that our children, our grandchildren can see them as well. — Obama on the trio's plan to take steps to further protect Monarch butterfly habitats.

This is all wonderful news for the butterflies. But is it also the thin edge of the Agenda 21 wedge – a highway, re-wilding of the countryside, re-education, statements like “our countries are intertwined.” Just thinking....

Tags: Agenda 21 | Biodiversity

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