CALEXICO — Crowded around a conference table Thursday, experts from Imperial County and Baja California discussed the air pollution problems that affect both countries.
Kimberly Collins, director of the California Center for Border and Regional Economic Studies at San Diego State University-Imperial Valley campus, said the meeting was noteworthy for something that didn't happen.
"There was none of the fingerpointing that is so often a part of these types of meetings," Collins said.
She said meeting attendees didn't spend the entire time blaming each other for their respective country's air pollution.
She said all participants worked constructively to put together materials to educate the populace about the dangers from air pollution.
Because of air pollution, an Imperial Valley resident is two times as likely to die of respiratory illness compared to other Californians, according to the American Lung Association.
For the past few months CCBRES has been conducting air pollution public forums with the institute of engineering of the Universidad Autonoma de Baja California of Mexicali, the Southwest Center for Environmental Research and Policy and Mexicali's Regional Center for Environmental and Socioeconomic Studies.