Texas farmers are still waiting for Mexico to make good on its “water debt”

Last fall, Mexico reached a deal with our nation to pay its “water debt”. The payment is enough to flood more than 100,000 acres with a foot of water. However, Texas farmers are still waiting to see it.

It has been a tough ten months for England Farms in Mercedes, Texas. First COVID hurt business, as well as the ability to find work, then a hurricane with floods that followed destroyed their crops. Now, they are waiting for Mexico to make good on its promise to pay its water debt.

“They haven’t repaid a gallon of water,” farmer Benton England states. He believes this situation could lead to an even bigger foreign affairs problem.

According to England, “The water treaty that we have today is just not acceptable. Now, do I think that we need to have a renegotiation? That’s a scary situation. Now, the uncertainty of renegotiating is very scary... we don’t want to give up too much.”

He says that the water is needed for farmers to cash in on a market that looks more positive this year than last year, but they cannot keep waiting.

“I’m thinking that a lot of farmers are not even going to be able to plant, because of lack of water,” he explains.

England says that members of the ag industry are optimistic at all times and if the Rio Grande Valley ag industry has another bad year, there is always next season.

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