Problem: Insufficient employment opportunities for Mexician citizens in Mexico
Proposal: Build a trans-oceanic canal across the Isthmus of Tehuantepec in southern Mexico.
The isthmus is 125 miles across at its narrowest point from gulf to gulf. The elevation ranges to 735 feet. A project of this size could keep a sizable workforce busy for several years. If combined with an overall project of developing manufacturing and high-grade port facilities on both the Pacific and Atlantic coasts Mexico could potentially begin to support its own population. A canal could also provide Mexico with a measure of protection from free-flowing refugees from the south.
Oil production currently exists in this area in and around the Bay of Campeche. However, production is dropping. Some areas peaked as early as 2006 (Cantarell) and the latest figure I have seen for any area to date is 2010 (Ku-Maloob-Zaap). Unless the northern fields (Aqua Fria and Chicontopec), which peak much later, are able to pick up the slack, there will be fewer jobs available for skilled Mexican workers.
1. Enhance ports on both coasts
2. Build multi-track trans-oceanic railway along the proposed route of the canal
3. Build trans-oceanic pipeline
4. Planning for up-stream ports, facilities and towns
1. Canal construction
2. Up-stream construction
Any project such as this has great potential for negative impact to the environment. All-phases of the project should take the environment into account. Additionally, large set-asides of land should be acquired and put in trust in perpetuity. These set-asides should be made in each area effected; mountains, marshes, etc.
Benefits to the U.S.:
1. Decreased border pressure from Mexican citizens seeking work
2. Decreased need for economic aid to Mexico
3. Decreased cost of shipping goods to/from trans-oceanic destinations
4. Decreased shipping time to/from trans-oceanic destinations