The U.S. Department of Homeland Security said Tuesday that it will waive environmental laws so it can build gates between sections of border barriers in South Texas’ Rio Grande Valley.
The waiver posted online lists 11 locations where the government plans to install gates in existing fencing. DHS has in recent months issued similar waivers of environmental laws for other projects to construct barriers along the southwest border.
The U.S. government already has around 700 miles (1,126 kilometers) of fencing on the southwest border. In far South Texas, segments of fencing stop and start along the levee built next to the Rio Grande, the river separating the U.S. and Mexico. Many parts of the fencing are built a significant distance from the river, in some cases bisecting private property.