Since inciting a mob to storm the Capitol & kill ppl, Trump's first public appearance will be celebrating 450 miles of border wall. It's a fitting followup also worthy of outrage considering the wall has been very destructive

Here's a thread highlight just how harmful it's been
One aspect of the wall that has escaped attention—it uses a ton of water. In some areas, more than 700,00 gallons of water *per mile.* This is a huge problem since most areas the wall passes thru are already short on water
This is especially relevant in southern Arizona, which is mostly walled off now.
The wall has totally changed the character of the land and the border. Much of it used to be easy for wildlife to cross. Not anymore.
Ah, I can't even fishing doing this right now. To be continued
One irony of Trump touting the wall in TX is this: land-owners have so far successfully prevented a lot of border wall construction in the state's private lands.

But in AZ's vast public lands, the wall has gone up, since there was less of an outcry.
That being said, many brave and committed people have fought the wall. It has had and will have far-reaching consequences. Arizonans certainly noticed—and were generally not happy.
The border wall thing is (obviously) personal for me. Here's a section of wall in Coronado N.F. west of Nogales. Almost certainly replaced with 30-foot bollard fencing now
The impact on animal movement will also be huge. Biologist @WNborderlands reports he's already observed hugely reduced animal abundance and movement at San Bernadino NWR, a precious desert wetland in SE AZ right on the border nationalgeographic.com/animals/2020/1…
if you have any interest and want to learn more, I spoke to @joesills for an hour about southern AZ and the border wall
Meanwhile on this here website all these folks are great follows for info on borderlands / border wall / immigration @LaikenJordahl @PeccaryNotPig @iamKurc @WNborderlands @rdevro @Sky_Islands @maxie_adler @Haleaziz
I hope you will forgive me for RT'ing some more of my highlights on the border wall topic, that way you can see the context/timing of the tweets as I've covered this extensively since the spring
One thing that gets me is how quickly the wall has gone up. When I wrote this story in March 2020, there'd been very little wall built in AZ in years. Now well over 200 miles have been put up in the state. nationalgeographic.com/animals/2020/0…
well over 200 *new* miles of 30 foot wall, mostly replacing short vehicle barriers and barbed wire
at that point I was highlighting how the border wall was escaping notice, being launched at the beginning of COVID. And I noted that before construction began, scores of laws, including the Endangered Species Act, NEPA, etc, were preemptively waived.
I think the ongoing pandemic has helped shield the border wall from scrutiny, and also makes its construction, which has used up >$8 billion of illegally procured taxpayer $, even more indefensible. Imagine how much this money, manpower and attention could've helped with COVID...
This was my last @natgeo piece about the border wall right before the election. Going forward I plan to cover how Biden handles the wall, and to what extent he might try and mitigate or reverse many of the harms caused, esp. impacts on wildlife movement nationalgeographic.com/environment/20…
So far all that's really known is that Biden has pledged to stop construction immediately. This will probably be a somewhat messy process as multiple contracts will have to be canceled, probably resulting in hefty cancellation fees. To be continued...
Most drugs and illegal immigration go thru legal ports of entry, so it makes no sense to build walls in the middle of the wilderness. Many former DHS people have made this argument, such as Janet Napolitano (head of the agency and fmr gov. of Arizona)
As noted, construction is ongoing & DHS is pushing new contracts. Just last week DHS waived dozens of laws to build more walls in CA, using same boilerplate language that it's an area of "high illegal entry." They've said that for all parts of the border! govinfo.gov/content/pkg/FR…
Reflecting more on Trump's choice of his 1st speech since inciting insurrection. Of course it's about the border wall—a monument to division and destruction—in TX, the only border state he won, the one that's built the smallest % of wall bc private citizens have standing to sue
It wouldn't be in AZ, of course, where most wall's been built. Many think Trump is seeking revenge for his AZ loss—fueled by indigenous voters—by speeding up the Oak Flat exchange, set to turn over USFS/Apache holy land to a foreign mining company Jan. 15
“Like a criminal who returns to the scene of a crime, [Trump] simply cannot help but gloat about stealing military funding to build an ineffective wall; separating thousands of children... and violating U.S. and international practices & laws" @RepEscobar elpasotimes.com/story/news/202…
Trump acknowledges the "Biden administration" (for only the 2nd time that I'm aware of) while celebrating building 450 miles of border wall. But it certainly sounded like a threat. Again, very on brand.

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More from @Douglas_Main

27 Nov 20
Hedge apples are fascinating. They’re too large/unpalatable to be eaten by humans or almost any (living) animal. The species is an evolutionary anachronism—a “ghost” of evolution—that co-evolved to be spread by huge extinct animals like mammoths or giant sloths (Thread to come) Image
Hedge apples were likely dispersed by giant extinct fauna: mammoths, mastodons, and possibly ground-sloths. Today no species besides humans efficiently spreads their seeds. Their range pre-European settlement was mostly restricted to TX and OK.
sciencedirect.com/science/articl… Image
Now, of course, they are found throughout the US (and other countries). That's mainly because:

1) their wood is extremely useful, for a variety of reasons...
2) they make incredibly good hedgerows...
3) they are very hardy and resistant to disease/decay Image
Read 20 tweets
12 Nov 20
I’m told that border wall contractors are now blasting and bulldozing thru the Pajarita Wilderness (seen below) in south-central Arizona, a majestic area known for extremely high biodiversity.

Wall here will sever wildlife corridors for cougars, deer, even jaguars and ocelots
Here’s a photo of some fencing in the area in 2017. This has almost certainly already been replaced by 30 foot wall. Please understand this: “Replacement” wall is NEW wall
So when allegedly informed people tell you "not much wall has been built, nothing to worry about"—they are wrong.

More than 400 miles of wall have been built. Mostly 30-foot tall.

Observe old fence (left) and new wall (right)

Photo by @LaikenJordahl
Read 7 tweets

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