Water reservoirs are a common sight in Mexico City. After all, the city lies on what was once a large lake system at the heart of the Anáhuac Valley.
But another common sight is those same reservoirs clogged with garbage, necessitating ongoing dredging and work by clean-up crews.
Such is the case with the Las Flores reservoir in the borough of Álvaro Obregón. Cleaned just two years ago, Las Flores is once more filled with garbage and the source of foul odors and the danger of infection.
The August 2014 clean-up was undertaken by borough staff, who took 20 days to complete the task with help of neighbors of the reservoir. It was the first one in 20 years.
But neighbor Gabriel Luján says now, two years after, conditions are just as bad as they were before the 20 staff members and 20 neighbors pitched in to remove debris.
“The putrid smells are disgusting. During the months of hot weather we try to stay as far away as we can,” he told the newspaper Reforma.
Las Flores is surrounded by the neighborhoods of Guadalupe Inn, Lomas de Tepepan, Transmisiones, Tío Guadalupe and Flor de María.
Luján remembers that in 2014 the borough administration provided the trucks and staff to take the trash elsewhere, “but it seems that they don’t want to help us anymore. It may take them another 20 years before they return and clean up again.”
The work in 2014 was performed under the previous administration of Leonel Luna, who at the time planned a reforestation project for the ravines around the reservoir.
“They were able to do that in the Becerra reservoir,” remembers Las Flores neighbor Jackeline Nava, but in Las Flores it never happened.
“We were told repeatedly that we would have a greenhouse to grow plants for the reforestation, but the project never materialized,” she said.
According to Reforma, Luna had requested 1 billion pesos from the local and federal governments to restore 100 kilometers of ravines in the borough, but the funding was never allocated.
The reservoirs are seen as handy places to dump garbage by residents left stranded when municipal garbage trucks fail to show up.
Source: Reforma (sp)