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Secretariat of Environment, Natural Resources and Fisheries, Mexico




MEMORANDUM OF UNDERSTANDING BETWEEN THE DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA AND THE SECRETARIAT OF ENVIRONMENT, NATURAL RESOURCES AND FISHERIES OF THE UNITED MEXICAN STATES TO WORK JOINTLY IN MATTERS RELATED TO THE PROTECTION AND CONSERVATION OF THE ENVIRONMENT

The Department of the Interior  (DOI) of the United States of America and the Secretariat of Environment, Natural Resources and Fisheries (SEMARNAP) of the United Mexican States, hereinafter “the Parties,”   

CONSIDERING

That the environment should be protected for the health and wellbeing of present and future generations; and

That sustainable development requires sound environmental management of natural resources; 

KEEPING IN MIND the long history of cooperation between the U.S. and Mexico regarding preservation and protection of biodiversity, illustrated through various bilateral, trilateral and multilateral agreements, such as but not limited to the following:

  1. The Convention between Mexico and the United States of America for the Protection of Migratory Birds and Game Mammals of February 7, 1936;
  2. The Convention on Nature Protection and Wildlife Preservation in the   Western Hemisphere of October 12, 1940;
  3. The Agreement on Cooperation for the Protection and Improvement of the Environment in the Border Area of August 14, 1983;
  4. The Memorandum of Understanding on Cooperation in Management and Protection of National Parks and Other Protected Natural and Cultural Heritage Sites of November 30, 1988, and January 24, 1989; 
  5.  The Memorandum of Understanding Concerning Scientific and Technical Cooperation on Biological Data and Information of May 16, 1995; 
  6. The Memorandum of Understanding Establishing the United States/Canada/Mexico Trilateral Committee for Wildlife and Ecosystem and Conservation Management, of April 9, 1996;
  7. Annex Two to the Memorandum of Understanding to establish the aerial photography initiative in the border region between the United States Geological Survey and the Institute of Statistics, Geography, and Information Science of the United Mexican States of May 6, 1996;
  8. The Letter of Intent between the Parties for Joint Work in Natural Protected Areas on the United States-Mexico Border of May 5, 1999; and
  9. The Wildfire Protection Agreement for the Common Border of June 4, 1999.

RECOGNIZING that:

Both Parties can obtain important mutual benefits through international cooperation on environmental matters; and

Some agencies of the DOI and SEMARNAP already possess existing structures for collaboration, which should not be duplicated or replaced.

Have agreed to the following:

ARTICLE 1
OBJECTIVE

The objective of this Memorandum of Understanding is to establish a basis for facilitating cooperative bilateral actions between the Parties and their sub-agencies regarding protection and conservation of the environment, on the basis of equality and mutual benefit, respecting and taking into consideration their respective environmental legislation and policies.

ARTICLE 2
COOPERATIVE ACTIONS

The cooperative actions referred to in Article 1 will be subject to the laws and regulations of the Parties when they are carried out in their respective territories, and may include:

  1. Conservation and restoration of land;
  2. Coordinated management in contiguous natural protected areas;
  3. Protection and management of natural protected areas;
  4. Water resources management, including transboundary watershed management;
  5. Development of scientific information pertinent to natural resources management; 
  6. Protection of wild flora and fauna, including migratory and transboundary species;
  7. Enforcement of environmental laws within the areas under their respective jurisdiction; 
  8. Management of coastal resources; 
  9. Sustainable management of native forests; 
  10. Community participation in environmental matters;
  11. Technologies that promote environmental quality and mitigate environmental damage;
  12. Environmental impact and risk assessment;
  13. Training, technological development and environmental education;
  14. Aspects related to atmospheric pollution and its affect on natural protected areas; and
  15. Any other item of common interest upon which both Parties agree. 

Actions between the Parties on subjects “f” and “g” will continue to be conducted under the Canada/Mexico/United States Trilateral Committee for Wildlife and Ecosystems Conservation and Management through the Memorandum of Understanding of 1996, except for activities that are not subject to that agreement, such as cooperation on contiguous natural protected areas along the border.

Special attention will be given to cooperative projects and regional coordination of adjacent natural protected areas on the U.S.-Mexico border because of the importance of the conservation of shared ecosystems and natural resources on the border.

Both Parties shall cooperate with other governmental and binational organizations whose jurisdiction is related to the subjects listed above, such as the International Boundary and Water Commission and environment and natural resource state and federal agencies.

ARTICLE 3
MODALITIES

The Parties agree that the cooperative activities referred to in the previous article may adopt the following modalities: 

  1. Exchange of information on environmental policies and administrative instruments with reference to protection and conservation of the environment; 
  2. Joint projects, exchange of technical experts and students, bilateral meetings, symposia, joint publications, workshops, seminars; and 
  3. Any other modality agreed to by the Parties. 

ARTICLE 4
EXPENSES

Each Party shall assume its respective costs for activities pursuant to this Memorandum of Understanding, unless otherwise mutually agreed to by the Parties.  Each Party’s’ activities conducted under this Memorandum of Understanding shall be subject to the availability of funds and personnel.

ARTICLE 5
COORDINATORS OF THE PARTIES

Each of the Parties will designate a Coordinator who will serve as a point of contact for this Memorandum of Understanding. 

ARTICLE 6
ANNUAL MEETINGS

An annual meeting will be held on an alternating basis by each Party.  Cooperative projects and  environmental policies will be discussed in these meetings.  Subjects that are covered in sub-agency annual meetings will not be addressed at this annual meeting when they would be duplicative.

ARTICLE 7
ENTRY OF PERSONNEL AND EQUIPMENT

The Parties shall encourage the entry of personnel and/or equipment, necessary for the completion of activities under this Memorandum of Understanding. Each Party shall undertake all reasonable steps and use its best efforts, within applicable laws and regulations, to facilitate entry into and exit from its territory of all personnel and equipment necessary in furtherance of the activities of this Memorandum of Understanding, including exemption from customs duty and immigration fees, consistent with Article 9 of the Agreement between the United States of America and the United Mexican States Relating to Scientific and Technical Cooperation, effected by an exchange of notes on June 15, 1972, as amended.

ARTICLE 8
INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY

Provisions for the protection and distribution of intellectual property created or furnished in the course of cooperative activities under the Memorandum shall be subject to the provisions set forth in the Intellectual Property Annex to the Agreement between the United States of America and the United Mexican States Relating to Scientific and Technical Cooperation, effected by an exchange of notes on June 15, 1972, as amended.

ARTICLE 9
INTERPRETATION

Nothing in this Memorandum of Understanding shall affect the rights and duties derived from other agreements that already exist between both countries, according to international law.

In the event that differences exist in the interpretation or application of this Memorandum of Understanding, the Parties will resolve them by mutual agreement. 

ARTICLE 10
DURATION

This Memorandum of Understanding shall enter into force upon signature and shall have an indefinite duration.

Any Party that wants to terminate this Memorandum of Understanding shall notify the other Party by giving 90 days written notice.

The termination of this Memorandum of Understanding shall not affect the validity or duration of cooperative projects or activities under this Memorandum of Understanding that were initiated prior to such termination.

ARTICLE 11
AMENDMENTS

This Memorandum of Understanding shall be amended by mutual written agreement of the Parties.  Amendments shall enter into force upon signature of both Parties or on a date agreed to by the Parties.

Done at Washington in duplicate, this eighteenth day of May 2000, in English and Spanish languages, each text being equally authentic.

 

FOR THE DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA:       

 

FOR THE SECRETARIAT OF ENVIRONMENT, NATURAL RESOURCES AND FISHERIES OF THE UNITED MEXICAN STATES: