La Paz News

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Mexico’s power plants burning dirty fuel

posted May 17, 2021, 4:15 AM by La Paz News   [ updated May 17, 2021, 4:16 AM ]

President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador has pledged to reduce Mexico’s dependence on fuel imports but is faced with highly inefficient refineries
Fuel that is so dirty that the global shipping industry banned its use last year is being burned at the highest level in Mexican power plants.
State oil company PEMEX produces quantities amounts of fuel oil unintentionally because its refineries lack the technology to extract cleaner fuels from the sludge that is leftover during the initial process of turning crude into gasoline.
Therefore, the more gasoline the country’s refineries produce, the more extra fuel oil they have to find a home for. With the global shipping industry shunning sulfurous fuel oil to curb emissions, storage tanks in Mexico are overflowing with the stuff, a byproduct of its attempt to produce more gasoline domestically.
The solution Mexico has chosen is to push more of it into electricity generation, replacing cleaner-burning natural gas.
Replacing natural gas, which it imports from the U.S., with fuel oil is certain to raise Mexico’s emissions.
President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador has pledged to reduce Mexico’s dependence on fuel imports but is faced with highly inefficient refineries.
Historically, it’s been cheaper for Mexico to export the crude it produces to countries with more technologically complex refineries and to import refined fuels like gasoline.
Switching a power plant that uses natural gas to fire a turbine to fuel oil generates 16% more carbon dioxide, according to BloombergNEF calculations.

Presidents fossil fuel-heavy energy plan jeopardizes Mexico’s green transition and climate commitments

Experts stated that the fuel oil plan will allow the CFE to reopen or make greater use of inefficient power plants whose operation is harmful to the environment. They also said that their use could cause power prices to go up.
AMLO has said that oil will finance the transition to clean energy. Yet it seems more likely to delay it. A new refinery’s average life cycle is around 20 years and requires new infrastructure, embodying more carbon. The reality is: a refinery is proposed but at no time a big push to renewable has been made. They keep putting gas in as clean energy, which is a big trap. There is no environmental policy during this presidency. They have no idea about the issue or who will advise them.

The government lacks ideas and hasn’t justified why so much money goes into oil despite its environmental impact.

Mexico has ample opportunities to attract solar and wind energy investment, but recent legal and regulatory changes are scaring investors and derailing climate goals. Mexico’s government has worked to implement reforms that will hinder privately funded renewable energy projects. The rule changes allow the country’s state-run electricity company, the CFE, to turn away from less expensive electricity produced from solar and wind, and prioritize electricity produced by state-run facilities using fossil fuel sources. While Europe pursues net-zero targets and the U.S. and China look to promote electric cars, Mexico’s President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador has promised voters that he’ll build a multi-billion-dollar refinery to allow drivers in Mexico to buy Mexican gasoline. It looks like energy nationalism is taking precedence over other priorities including climate change and job creation.

Content credits: Bloomberg, Forbes, Business Times
La Paz Baja California Sur

Covid-19 statement BCS governor

posted Apr 2, 2020, 4:54 PM by La Paz News

BCS governors statement
Translation of video-transcript of the message of Governor Carlos Mendoza Davis to the people of Baja California Sur, given 31. March 2020 at 21:00hr about measures regarding the state of emergency that was declared by the Federal Government on 30. March 2020
Find below the post how we obtained the transcript and how it has been translated.

People of BCS, this is a very important announcement. I will make public various measures to face the pandemic and overcome the situation. We are in a decisive moment in the history of BCS. Our immediate future will be written by all of us in the following weeks; and each and every one of us have a responsibility that we must meet.

The federal authorities have declared a national sanitary emergency due to pandemic caused by the presence of the COVID-19 virus. The immediate suspension of non-essential activities in the public, private and social sectors has been instructed. This suspension will remain in effect until April 30.

Also, there are a series of mandatory actions to be observed by all citizens and residents of Mexico. The sanitary authorities strongly urge everyone to stay home. To stay home means to avoid contagion, to stop making other people sick and, perhaps, to live. It is time to stop worrying about the calamity and start working for a solution.

Unfortunately, the number of confirmed cases has increased. Let me be very clear; if we don't act today, hospitals, medical personnel and equipment might be insufficient based on the potential number of patients. In our state, we have registered 18 confirmed cases, and another 12 are being evaluated. Unfortunately, today the first 2 deaths took place, both in the city of La Paz. My condolences to their friends and family.

Find more info at the official government of BCS website

It is a time for solidarity and responsibility. We must redouble our efforts. The following days will be decisive because we will define how big is the challenge that we will face in the next following weeks. For these reasons, and with the authority granted to me to my administration, and to all state governments in Mexico, by the National Health council, I have issued an agreement that considers a series of economic and social actions that must be observed by all citizens and residents of all five municipalities in BCS.

I repeat, these measures are mandatory from the moment of their publication in the Official Government Journal for the state of BCS.

All public events are suspended until further notice. This includes sporting, recreational, social, political, cultural, academic, private and public events and all those that imply the gathering of people, regardless of the size of the event or the space where they were intended to take place.

This measure also applies to temples and churches, as well as to any space or center of a similar nature, to establishments like movies, theaters, art galleries, gyms, casinos, bars, night clubs and event venues, beaches, parks, beauty salons and cosmetology clinics, massages and spas will all remain closed until further notice.

The operation of restaurants or food preparation establishments will be allowed only for delivery and takeout services, and under no circumstances will patrons be allowed to eat in.

In order to guarantee ease of access to the supplies needed for daily life and to keep the economy moving; department stores, grocery stores, supermarkets, markets, businesses that sell food and other supplies, as well as hospitals, pharmacies, centers for the treatment of addictions, daycare's, stores, public and cargo transportation companies, gas stations, drinking water services, mail, freight and courier services; as well as shelters for migrant workers or homeless people, banking and telecommunications services; as well as press and media companies will continue to operate, observing all sanitary and labor precautions.

Let me point out that companies that produce food will be able to operate as long as there are heightened sanitary filters as well as labor guidelines according to the recommendations of the sanitary authorities.

The general population shall stay home, always following the basic prevention measures issued by the sanitary authorities. Only one person per household may leave to purchase food and other supplies. I repeat only one person per household may leave the house at a time.

Panic purchases shall be avoided at all times; each commercial establishment shall implement the required measures to control the number of products available for purchase per customer.

Only in those cases when somebody is in need of medical assistance or has a doctor’s appointment may they leave their home accompanied by another person or relative. Senior citizens shall remain home in a special area maintaining a safe, clean and isolated environment to avoid any possibility for contagion.

We are facing a national emergency and we must act with civility and responsibility. Those of us who have to leave our homes; must do so following all precautionary sanitary measures. It is recommended to shower and change clothes as soon as we return home. Once in our homes let's all keep our distance, refraining from hugging each other and observing the recommended sanitary measures, the time will come when we can hug again.

Anyone presenting COVID-19 symptoms, which are flu-like symptoms and are well known by all, regardless of their insurance carrier, shall remain home and report his or her symptoms to the sanitary authorities by calling 800-BCS-COVID (800-227-26843) for medical attention. It is very important to refrain from going to medical units, instead qualified and equipped doctors and nurses will make home visits if needed. Also, anyone with a confirmed case with a positive diagnosis, must maintain home quarantine or where indicated by the health authorities.

This is not a game; it is a moral and even legal obligation. The person or persons who do not comply with this provision will be sanctioned for the possible commission of the crime of contagion endangerment, provided for in article 168 of the State Penal Code. Of course, the objective is not to sanction, but to convince everyone of the importance of following these provisions for the benefit of all. Baja California Sur needs and, I am sure, counts on us. Likewise, establishments that violate the provisions of this agreement will be creditors to temporary closure, fines, and other sanctions provided by law.

On the other hand, I inform you that starting today, as a measure to improve the attention provided to the members of our community, we make available to everyone a new web application that will help us to be more efficient in diagnosing COVID-19. In it, anyone who presents the COVID-19 symptoms will be able to fill out a simple form from their phone or computer, which will be sent to our medical team, it will be assigned a Folio and you will shortly be contacted by a doctor by videoconference or conventional phone call and, if necessary, they will go to your home to apply the COVID-19 test. To access this new diagnostic tool simply visit CORONAVIRUS.BCS.GOB.MX where you will find access to the application and you will be able to use it.

In the case of the state public administration, its various dependencies will arrange what is necessary to guarantee the operation of the areas needed to attend any contingency and also, to keep operating the essential public services with sufficiency and opportunity for the duration of this contingency. With staff members over 60 years of age, pregnant or nursing women, people with non-controlled chronic diseases, or autoimmune and other high-risk groups, remaining at home, as well as those who can provide their services from home. In this sense, I have instructed the municipal authorities, the Ministry of Health, the state commission for protection against health risks, the Ministry of Public Security and the State Attorney General's Office to ensure compliance with each and every one of the actions included in this agreement; which by the way, is available, for public viewing on the page of the State Government’s Official Gazette.

People of BCS these are difficult times, our success will depend on the success of our actions. If these measures are not sufficient, they could be modified according to our needs, circumstances, or also by the national agreements issued by the National General Health Council. My legal and moral obligation is to ensure the health of each inhabitant of this wonderful state. As your governor, I will continue to make the decisions that are required and to work tirelessly to guarantee the well-being of all, but this is a challenge that the Government can certainly not overcome alone; it requires that each and every one of us generously contribute what we must. With a contagion capacity like that of this virus, each of us is either part of the solution or propagator of the problem. Let's do our part. We each have a task to fulfill. We must quickly overcome the accelerated contagion rate with which the pandemic stalks us. This has already happened in other places, let us not allow it to happen to us too.

I am certain that with these measures and the responsibility and solidarity of all members of our society, we will return to normality. Our children will return to their schools, our youth to practice sports, our older adults will continue to be safe with us. Saving lives is possible with all of us. Protecting ourselves is possible and it is also our duty. What is the most precious thing we have? health, life. Our own life, that of our loved ones, that of others, depends on us staying home and following these simple instructions.

What we do and how much we stop doing, for better or for worse, will make a difference. The answer is in the responsibility and solidarity of all, here and now. Thank you very much for your Attention


Some of you may wonder on how to get a transcript from a YouTube video - here a quick "How To":
1) Go to the YouTube channel the video is published
2) Below the video is a line with diffgerent menu options as "like", "share", "save" - click the 3 dots at the end and at drop-down select "Open Transcript"
3) A window/frame will open in the right sidebar with the transcript. It has another 3 dot drop-down menu to Toggle Timestamps. Do so to get rid of timestamps.
4) Copy the complete transcript and past at your preferred translator. We do use mainly DeepL Translator as it get's better translations as Google, again that is a preference thing.
That's all - You are done!
La Paz Baja California Sur

World Justice Rule of Law Index

posted Mar 14, 2019, 3:54 PM by La Paz News   [ updated Mar 14, 2019, 3:55 PM ]

The World Justice Project Rule of Law index 2019
The WJP (World Justice Project) Rule of Law Index relies on more than 120,000 household and 3,800 expert surveys to measure how the rule of law is experienced and perceived in everyday life around the world. Performance is assessed through 44 indicators organized around 8 themes: constraints on government powers, absence of corruption, open government, fundamental rights, order and security, regulatory enforcement, civil justice, and criminal justice.
The new WJP Rule of Law Index scores show that more countries declined than improved in overall rule of law performance for the second year in a row, continuing a negative slide toward weaker rule of law around the world. In a sign suggesting rising authoritarianism, the factor score for "Constraints on Government Powers" declined in more countries than any other factor worldwide over the last year (61 countries declined, 23 stayed the same, 29 improved). This factor measures the extent to which, in practice, those who govern are bound by governmental and non-governmental checks such as an independent judiciary, a free press, the ability of legislatures to apply oversight, and more.
"This slide in rule of law in general and checks on government powers in particular is deeply concerning,” commented Elizabeth Andersen, executive director of the World Justice Project. "There is a crucial difference between "rule by law" and "rule of law." In too many countries, laws and legal institutions are being manipulated to undermine rather than uphold the rule of law, even as governments wrap their actions in "rule of law" rhetoric."
The second largest decline over last year was seen in the area of "Criminal Justice," followed by "Open Government" and "Fundamental Rights." On a positive note, more countries improved in "Absence of Corruption" than declined for the second year in a row.
As you probably expected - Mexico does not look very good in the overall ranking of the report - position #99 out of 126 is nothing to be proud of. As you can see i below inserted graphics, order and security as well criminal justice do have a significant impact on Mexico's ranking.

Criminal Justice (Factor 8 of the WJP Rule of Law Index) evaluates the criminal justice system. An effective criminal justice system is a key aspect of the rule of law, as it constitutes the conventional mechanism to redress grievances and bring action against individuals for offenses against society. Effective criminal justice systems are capable of investigating and adjudicating criminal offenses successfully and in a timely manner (8.1 and 8.2), through a system that is impartial and non-discriminatory (8.4), and is free of corruption and improper government influence (8.5 and 8.6), all while ensuring that the rights of both victims and the accused are effectively protected (8.7). The delivery of effective criminal justice also necessitates correctional systems that effectively reduce criminal behavior (8.3). Accordingly, an assessment of the delivery of criminal justice should take into consideration the entire system, including the police, the lawyers, prosecutors, judges, and prison officers.

Funny Gifts For Pet Owners and Lovers at!

La Paz Social Media

Victory Is Everything

Baja Sur Travel Advisories

posted Aug 24, 2018, 6:08 PM by La Paz News   [ updated Aug 24, 2018, 6:11 PM ]

Baja Sur Travel Advisory by US Stae Department
The US State department released a Travel Advisory on August 22, 2018. It recommends to exercise increased caution in Mexico due to crime. Some areas have increased risk. Violent crime, such as homicide, kidnapping, carjacking, and robbery, is widespread. Specific for the BCS state the report reads:
Baja California Sur state – Level 2: Exercise Increased Caution
Exercise increased caution due to crime. Criminal activity and violence, including homicide, remain an issue throughout the state. According to Government of Mexico statistics, the state experienced an increase in homicide rates compared to the same period in 2016.

While most of these homicides appeared to be targeted, criminal organization assassinations, turf battles between criminal groups have resulted in violent crime in areas frequented by U.S. citizens. Bystanders have been injured or killed in shooting incidents. There are no U.S. government restrictions for travel in Baja California Sur, which includes the tourist areas of Cabo San Lucas, San Jose del Cabo, and La Paz.

All Mexico Tavel Warnings Map by US State Department 22nd August 2018


Triathlon La Paz

posted Mar 22, 2017, 4:49 PM by Paceno La Paz   [ updated Mar 22, 2017, 6:02 PM by Hernan Cortes ]

La Paz Triathlon CAMTRI Triathlon American Cup and Cube Desert Bikes
Triathlon American Cup in La Paz- Triathletes will swim, bike, and run routes this weekend that cover the malecon (boardwalk) and the road to Tecolote Beach / Balandra Bay.
Swimming distances are 750 or 1500 meters
Cycling distances are 20, 40, or 48 km
Running distances of 5km or 10km

Top elite starters men & women by start-number 2017 La Paz, BCS, Mexico, CAMTRI Triathlon American Cup
  • 1 Rodrigo Gonzalez MEX
  • 2 Hui Wai Wong HKG
  • 3 Leong Tim Law HKG
  • 4 Seth Rider USA
  • 5 David Mendoza MEX
  • 6 Fabian Villanueva MEX
  • 7 Yu Hang Kok HKG
  • 8 Edson Gomez MEX
  • 9 Collin Chartier USA
  • 10 Hernan Dario Valero COL
  • 11 David Nuñez MEX
  • 12 Eduardo Moreno MEX
  • 14 Diego Alejandro Lopez Acosta MEX
  • 15 James Tan HKG
Cube Desertbikes La Paz
  • 41 Vanesa De La Torre MEX
  • 42 Adriana Barraza MEX
  • 43 Hideko Kikuchi JPN
  • 44 Lizeth Rueda Santos MEX
  • 45 Adriana Isaura Carreño MEX
  • 46 Paola Diaz MEX
  • 47 Andrea B Gutierrez MEX
  • 48 Amalia Isabel Sanchez Albo MEX
  • 49 Jessica Romero Tinoco MEX
  • 50 Karla Ruiz Gaona MEX
La Paz Triathlon swimming larger distance

La Paz Cube Triathlon bicycle larger distance

La Paz 2017 Triathlon running malecon


SAPA Sucks - ongoing water disconnection for handicapped person

posted May 4, 2016, 10:47 AM by Ernst Krespo   [ updated May 18, 2016, 11:50 AM ]

Portable water provider for La Paz BCS SAPA
La Paz, great city to live, has a lot to offer no matter if for a national citizen or a foreign resident. This can all change pretty quick if you have to deal with authorities. Emphasize IT CAN, NOT MUST.            No matter if police, immigration, CFE, TelMex or - as in that case here SAPA. - It always depends on the "day form" of the person you deal with or the level of competence and professionals you encounter.
There is no formula, many people for example, I hear have more negative experience with CFE and TelMex - mine is excellent, very cooperative and service oriented.. so go figure!
The core of this post however is very simple: How come SAPA can violate the Mexican constitution, ignore a Mexico’s Supreme Court of Justice ruling, kick any international signed treaties with United Nations into the gutters and disconnect - not reduce - disconnect a handicapped persons water supply??
The individual, a expatriate, living like a hermit, since a few years limited in motion/handicapped and not capable to walk very far based on a health condition owes SAPA,  he does not contest that fact at all.
He has had during the time the sum accumulated (less as 250,-$US) several engagements with SAPA operatives visiting the location / dwelling he rents.

Now during the years at the peninsula I had my run-in's with "sad" Baja stories and I'm very careful before I engage. What I write down here I have checked during a visit with person in question viewing documents presented. The individual has a load of filed invoices/paid receipts  from CFE, SAPA, TelMex etc dating back to 2004 showing he addressed his obligations. It appears there was during spring of 2014 a series of unfortunate events (severe health/illness, none foreseen changes in professional field, all out of control that put individual in a economic hole as saying goes.
Hurricane Odile stomped on top of that.

There is no family or relatives here or up-road that could help out.
Person is in late 50's and does not appear to be a drinker or drug user, living in poor conditions, no luxury, electronics, transportation/vehicle
Because of limitations to move/walk income is created by writing code and other web-work. After hitting rock-bottom and starting clawing way back out of hole step-by-step the individual was never able to pay everything with SAPA at ones.  The genuine inability to pay the full amount due is given by my opinion considering the circumstances.
Over a half year back-rent, ongoing cost of living, medical care was to address (and has been solved step by step according to receipts)
Smaller payments on amount due to SAPA offered was refused by SAPA operatives visiting the dwelling insisting on full payment.

At 7th of March SAPA removed the meter, disconnected water service total (see image) despite knowing the dwelling is occupied!!
The individual called SAPA and try to explain situation but obviously without success.
Phone records show a 20 some minutes connection with SAPA.

A Senora "Shoshi" (?) basically question statement of immobility/handicap - Certificado Medico is on hand plus plain and simple ones no need to be a medical professional to see the legs of this person do not function well.
Good enough to go to tienda 100 meters, no more.

It upsets me to see that there is no human compassion, no ethical compass and no moral capacity to address such an issue if the person in question reaches out and asks to find a feasible solution.
Talking 20 minutes on the phone is sufficient enough to at least verify claims made.
The equivalent of "I have to look into that or send somebody out" is NOT sufficient if water service is disconnected
Not with the laws given but more important not by ethical and moral standards!
This situation stinks and therefore my statement  SAPA sucks despite me personal had no bad experiences.
Cutting a handicapped persons water of, Mexican or expat, because of genuine inability to pay for sure impacts my opinion about them...
If there are any further question or interest to contact that individual get in touch with me HERE

Update 18th of May 2016
At the date of initial posting, 4th of May 2016 I have reached out per e-mail to: SAPA via website mailform - besides an automated e- mail confirmation no response! (They promote their online presence)
To the major of La Paz Lic. Armando Martinez Vega - Presidente Municipal at - no response
To a Lic. Salvador Salgado Gutierrez (was listed as coodinador de relaciones publicas) - no response
I did ask for comments regarding this situation - no response at all is a pretty poor reflection. So basically it boils down to the fact if you decide to relocate to La Paz, Baja California Sur and do have by an odd twist of life a difficult time: Do not count on any assistance. You are on your own!


Mexico 2012:  - 
The human right to water and sanitation is officially law in Mexico! The president of Mexico published an amendment to article 12 of the country's constitution. The amendment provides that every person in Mexico is entitled to affordable, accessible, and safe water in sufficient amounts for domestic uses.

Mexico 2014:
Mexico’s Supreme Court of Justice sets precedent on the human right to water and sanitation.The court establishes that the human right to water is violated if a person receives less than 100 liters a day, The Supreme Court of Justice of Mexico issued its judgment in Case No. 49/2014, determining that the constitutional and international obligations for the human right to water requires that each person receive "sufficient” water: 50-100 liters per person per day. The decision followed international standards set by the World Health Organization, the United Nations, and best practices.

When there is genuine inability to pay, human rights simply forbids disconnections

The Court also found that each person has a right to sanitation. According to international human rights law, it was acknowledged by the Court that this should be understood as a system for the "gathering, transferring, treatment, and elimination or reusing of human excrement” and its respective component, protecting health and hygiene.

United Nations General Assembly - Mexico member since 7th of November 1945:
The Right to Water, or more accurately the Human Right to Water and Sanitation (HRWS), was recognised by the United Nations General Assembly on the 28 July 2010. "The human right to water entitles everyone to sufficient, safe, acceptable, physically accessible and affordable water for personal and domestic uses", UN CESC - General Comment 15, para.2

United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) 2014:
Disconnections due to non-payment are only permissible if it can be shown that the resident is able to pay but is not paying. In other words, when there is genuine inability to pay, human rights simply forbids disconnections.

I reached out to a) SAPA b) City of La Paz c) Conaqua d) United Nations ICESCR with request to comment.

Editors Note: E. Krespo is a investigative e-journalist, freelance tech- and security equipment reports writer, member and/or freelance contractor with International Consortium of Investigative Journalists and Deutsche Welle The opinions expressed in this commentary are solely those of the author

Dengue Chikungunya Zika DIY Trap

posted May 3, 2016, 9:17 PM by Paceno La Paz   [ updated May 3, 2016, 9:19 PM ]

Mosquito Transmitte Virus Dengue Zika Chikungunya
Battling virus - Dengue, Chikungunya, Zika - transmitted by mosquito’s, on old tire at the time. Clever and highly effective mosquito trap made from the pests' favorite breeding spot! Canadian innovation for killing mosquito eggs could help Dengue, Chikungunya, Zika fight. Researchers use mosquitoes' own perfume to lure them to lay eggs in trap.
A team of innovators from Canada and Mexico have successfully tested a low cost, environmentally-friendly way of destroying the eggs of the mosquito genus that spreads dengue, Chikungunya and the Zika virus.
Secretaria de Salud de Estado de BCS Mosquito trap
The editor of this post has by the BCS health department a trap places which is regulary checked and new set by staff from that department.
During the last control the personal found dengue/chikungunya larva.
It might be an good idea to put self a trap up if you have problems with chemicals. Researchers found that 84 ovillantas placed in seven neighborhoods in the town of Sayaxche destroyed more than 18,000 Aedes larvae per month. That’s nearly seven times better than standard traps.
The devices also provide an answer - albeit a very small one - for one of the world’s most intractable waste-disposal problems: What to do with old tires. Moreover, the traps are inexpensive and relatively easy to make and the there’s an almost inexhaustible supply of materials available

The Federal Health Ministry said the lack of citizen participation to keep yards clean and avoid places where water can accumulate in puddles or dirty water is a factor to increase cases of dengue. "I have always said, that the reduction of cases at par and is proportional to the participation of the community, as a community and private institutions become involved it decrease dengue cases by the same proportion." said Garcia, Federal Minister of Health.

The following information is compiled from sources at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

Dengue - With more than one-third of the world’s population living in areas at risk for infection, dengue virus is a leading cause of illness and death in the tropics and subtropics. As many as 400 million people are infected yearly. Dengue is caused by any one of four related viruses transmitted by mosquitoes. There are not yet any vaccines to prevent infection with dengue virus and the most effective protective measures are those that avoid mosquito bites. When infected, early recognition and prompt supportive treatment can substantially lower the risk of medical complications and death. Dengue has emerged as a worldwide problem only since the 1950s. Although dengue rarely occurs in the continental United States, it is endemic in Puerto Rico and in many popular tourist destinations in Latin America.
Source: Dengue

Chikungunya - chikungunya (pronunciation: \chik-en-gun-ye) virus is transmitted to people by mosquitoes. The most common symptoms of chikungunya virus infection are fever and joint pain. Other symptoms may include headache, muscle pain, joint swelling, or rash. Outbreaks have occurred in countries in Africa, Asia, Europe, and the Indian and Pacific Oceans. In late 2013, chikungunya virus was found for the first time in the Americas.
Source: Chikungunya

Zika - Local mosquito transmission of Zika virus infection (Zika) has been reported in Mexico. Local mosquito transmission means that mosquitoes in the area are infected with Zika virus and are spreading it to people. The mosquitoes that spread Zika usually do not live at elevations above 6,500 feet (2,000 meters) because of environmental conditions. Travelers whose itineraries are limited to areas above this elevation are at minimal risk of getting Zika from a mosquito. The following map shows areas of Mexico above and below 6,500 feet.
Source: Zika

The Trap

The device, known as an ovillanta (loosely translated, it’s Spanish for “tire for laying eggs”), to destroy the larvae of the Aedes, a genus of mosquito that carries the now-notorious Zika virus as well as the dengue, chikungunya and yellow fever viruses.
For starters, the devices eliminate the need to use pesticides that can damage the environment and carry the risk of collateral damage to other insects - including those that eat mosquitoes.
The system includes an innovative designed trap created from two 50 cm sections of an old car tire, fashioned into a mouth-like shape, with a fluid release valve at the bottom.

Inside the lower tire cavity, a milk-based, non-toxic solution developed at Sudbury's Laurentian University lures mosquitoes. Inserted to float in the artificial pond is a wooden or paper strip on which the female insect lays her eggs. The strip is removed twice weekly, analyzed for monitoring purposes, and the eggs destroyed using fire or ethanol.

The solution, which now includes mosquito pheromone (the female insect's chemical perfume that helps others identify a safe breeding site), is then drained, filtered, and recycled back into the tire. The pheromone concentrates over time, making the ovillanta even more attractive for mosquitoes.

Want to make your own ovillanta cheap, easy, and have a successful solution to mosquitos carrying Dengue,Chikungunya and Zika virus? Have a look at the project's DIY video (in Spanish).

Mexico Peace Index

posted Jul 7, 2015, 3:49 PM by Hernan Cortes   [ updated Jul 7, 2015, 4:24 PM ]

According to the National Statistics and Geography Institute (INEGI) 34.8% of the Mexican families revealed that at least one of the members were victims of a crime
Baja Sur listed listed within the states showing a slight decrease in peace. While least peaceful states in Mexico showed the biggest improvement in peace, the most peaceful states showed a slight decrease in peace. Mexico has become more peaceful over the last three years due to a dramatic decrease in the number of homicides. The 2015 Mexico Peace Index shows a cautious yet optimistic view of peace in Mexico, with a 16% increase in levels of peace over the last three years. The trend towards peace is widespread with 26 of the 32 Mexican states becoming more peaceful over the last two years. The homicide rate fell by 30% in the last two years, largely driven by a decrease in organized crime. The least peaceful states in Mexico showed the biggest improvement in peace, while the most peaceful states showed a slight decrease in peace. The three factors that are most influential on peace in Mexico are: functioning of government, levels of corruption and good relations with neighbors. Although peace is improving in Mexico, it still remains the least peaceful country in Central America.
According to the National Statistics and Geography Institute (INEGI), 34.8% of the Mexican families revealed that at least one of the members were victims of a crime in 2013, that meaning, 10.7 million homes. Then, the perception of insecurity has caused a change on the daily acting of people.

Furthermore, the Peace Index of Mexico 2015, elaborated by experts from the Institute of Economics and Peace, specified that the level of peace in Mexico got better less than 1%, after three years of overcoming 15% and 23 states are even more violent than 12 years ago.
Click image to view large
To further analyze the texture of peace in Mexico IEP has measured 76 of Mexico’s major cities to create the Mexico Metropolitan Peace Index. The Mexico Metropolitan Peace Index (MMPI) consists of two indicators: homicide rate and violent crime rate. This is a subset of the state level peace index, with homicide and violent crime being the only two indicators with the most applicable data at the metropolitan level.
Peaceful states showed a slight decrease in peace
The MMPI has used data from the three years from 2011 to 2013 and then averaged the data to create the index. Much of the media covering the increase in violence in Mexico over the past decade has focused on Mexican cities in the Border States, with a particular focus on the homicide. Rate in these cities and how they compare to other violent metropolises from other countries.
Many publications, including some INEGI reports, have reviewed which cities in the world are the most violent, with Mexican cities being prominent amongst the rankings. However, these rankings of the most violent cities usually only focus on the homicide rate, which does not give a holistic picture of the level of violence in Mexican cities.
By combining violent crime and homicide it is possible to develop a more holistic picture of violence at the city level and identify which cities are successful at maintaining peace.

Credit: Institute for Economics and Peace - Mexico Peace Index

88 clans control Mexicos Congress

posted May 6, 2015, 10:16 AM by Hernan Cortes   [ updated May 6, 2015, 10:17 AM ]

88 families have held control over 455 federal legislative positions during the last 81 years - See more at:
Nepotism in Mexican congress. Are you surprised? 88 families have held control over 455 federal legislative positions during the last 81 years, a period in which when reelection to the legislature has been prohibited, according to an investigation by El Universal news outlet. Of these dynasties, 53 have been present for between nine and 18 years; and 35 between 21 and 57 years, according to an research by El Universal.

A group of 230 legislators that belong to the "castes" that have controlled Mexico's Congress since 1934 have survived to reforms and switched parties to remain in power. Many parliamentarians are candidates in the current electoral process, while others have their clan's seat secured through proportional representation.

Their political heritage lies in their lineage and surname, that open the doors of Congress and political power in general: Rojo-Lugo, Batres, Vicencio, Sansores, Monreal, Alcaine, Manatou, Martínez, Ortega, Padierna.

The biggest "brand" is the Vicencio family, from Xonacatlán de Vicencio, State of Mexico, a town that owes its establishment to Celso Vicencio, local congressman in 1870, the first legislator of the family.

It would be very interesting to do such an research in Baja Sur state government and the municipio of La Paz and Cabo San Lucas...... Somehow I got the feeling that the results will be very similar. The power is within a few names/clans, excessive nepotism and enrichment by connection at the cost of the general population. What else is new....

Find the original report at El Universal Newspaper

How powerful is Mexico?

posted Apr 28, 2015, 5:18 AM by Hernan Cortes   [ updated Apr 28, 2015, 5:19 AM ]

Mexico is poised to become Latin America’s economic star in the coming decade
With a strong national culture and positive international relations marred by expanding cartel violence, we wanted to know, just how powerful is Mexico?
Mexico is poised to become Latin America’s economic star in the coming decade. The government’s recent reform of the energy sector will contribute directly to economic performance by reducing the cost of manufacturing.
 In the context of the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), the resulting increase in manufacturing competitiveness promises to boost Mexico’s growth substantially.

None of this is to deny that Mexico still must confront other significant problems. For example, primary and secondary education needs improvements that the teachers’ unions are blocking, and criminal activity, much of it drug-related, makes personal security a serious concern throughout the country.
Mexico's poverty rate fell 0.6 percent between 2010 and 2012 to 53.3 million people, the government's social development agency Coneval said. Factoring in population growth, the ranks of the poor grew by half a million people in that time. That rise underscores the challenges President Enrique Pena Nieto faces as he tries to lift millions of people out of poverty and boost growth in Mexico, which has a huge wealth gap.

But, despite such problems, the energy and electricity reforms, and the deeper links with the US and Canada that they imply, promises to accelerate Mexico’s growth rate, boost employment and income, and thus raise Mexicans’ standard of living.


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