“BAMOS A Ver” for the U.S.-Mexican Border

by Bobby Reyes

“BAMOS” – Bamboo, Abaca, and Moringa | PDM Composite Photo via Creative Commons

(Part III – How Mexican Bamboos Can Make Joe Biden a Genius.”)

I am fond of using Spanish/Mexican phrases like “Vamos a ver …” It means, “Let’s go and we will see …” Casting modesty aside, some people call me the Filipino wordsmith who has coined so many acronyms. So, for this column about “reinventing” the American-Mexican and the Mexican-Guatemalan-and-Belize borders (for a start), I call it “BAMOS,” a slogan as you may, which means, “Bamboo, Abaca, Moringa, and Other Species.

And “ZE&E” (rhymes with “sea”) means “Zones for Ecology and the Economy.” Thus, one of the conceptual frameworks of approach is to use the “BAMOS” to serve as ecological dividers in the said borders and turn the Southern Border into “ZE&E.” Yes, “Green Zones” that will not only generate oxygen for polluted planet earth but also provide lots of jobs and Green-products needed for modern needs — from energy, housing components to diapers to food ingredients, etc. The “BAMOS” Initiative may likewise solve nagging problems such as illegal immigration, homelessness, unemployment, plastic-based pollution, and other social ills in North, Central, South America, and the Caribbean.

In the first two parts of this series, I suggested the Mexican bamboo and the moringa tree’s roles. A third plant belongs to the banana family – the abaca. The Spanish colonizers found out that native farmers used abaca fibers to make clothes, bags, ropes, and other organic products believed to be indigenous to the Philippines. And they mistook abaca as a member of the hemp family. And thus, the misnomer, Manila hemp. I registered it as a domain name in the late 1990s but abandoned it for the abaca. It never came from the City of Manila or the Metropolitan Manila, and it was not hemp. To continue owning the www.manilahemp.com was reinforcing a lie, if not an untruth.

The Spaniards introduced the abaca in their colonies in Central and South America. And it thrived only in Ecuador and Costa Rica, which are now the second-and-third biggest abaca producers — after the Philippines.

Therefore, if the abaca grows in Ecuador and Costa Rica, the chances are that it will thrive in Mexico and even on the Mexican-American border. And in the southern edge of Mexico with Central-American countries.

“Using abaca and bamboo as raw materials in the manufacture of paper (even currency paper), paper bags, reusable and washable grocery bags, packaging materials, baby and incontinence diapers, and other items (mats for use against sand storms in deserts) can reduce the use of plastic.”

Abaca and bamboo can turn into paper, paper bags, reusable grocery bags, packaging materials, diapers, and other items to reduce plastic use. Or eliminate lots of plastic pollution.

Using abaca and bamboo as raw materials in the manufacture of paper (even currency paper), paper bags, reusable and washable grocery bags, packaging materials, baby and incontinence diapers, and other items (mats for use against sand storms in deserts) can reduce the use of plastic. And cut down on plastic pollution. Organic materials quickly decompose in months and not in multiple generations. They even produce non-toxic ashes when burned in incinerators to produce electricity.

Corporate America creates a lot of pollution by using plastic materials in their packaging needs. For instance, Forbes Magazine reported that “online retail giant Amazon generated almost 500 million pounds of plastic packaging last year. More than 22 million pounds of which ended up in rivers and oceans according to a new report. It said that it was potentially threatening efforts by CEO Jeff Bezos to burnish his firm’s sustainability credentials.” Please read the Forbes Magazine report at this link.

“Corporate America creates a lot of pollution by using plastic materials in their packaging needs. For instance, Forbes Magazine reported that “online retail giant Amazon generated almost 500 million pounds of plastic packaging last year. More than 22 million pounds of which ended up in rivers and oceans according to a new report.”

A newly-inaugurated President Biden can perhaps persuade the most prominent plastic polluters like Amazon to invest in the “ZE&E” along the Mexican-American, the Mexican-Belize, and the Mexican-Guatemalan borders. And the investors can reap a modest ROI for their stakeholders and generate lots of social benefits and safety nets for the poor, the homeless, and the under-privileged components of society in the affected countries. And embellish their “sustainability credentials” and love of Mother Nature.

NAMING RIGHTS. They can name huge reforested areas after the corporate investors and billionaire CEOs. Imagine a human-made “New Amazon Forest” with “Bezos Parks” (or “Lungs of the World”) inside it. Imagine a “Bloomberg Bastion of Bio-diversity” in planet earth’s new habitats that can turn green the bald-and-brown mountains of the American Continent? And of course, the much cleaner “ZE&E,” oops, seas and oceans that slowly will not have millions of tons of garbage and plastic pollutants.

If the Fourth Estate can give the utmost courtesy and cooperation for the First 100 Days of an administration, perhaps Corporate America can observe the same tradition for the new POTUS and his suggested “Biden Doctrine.” After all, who would go against a “Win, Win” scenario for the environment and the corporate and governmental bottom line?

Thus, it is foreseeable to predict that a “Biden Doctrine” for Mexico, Central- and South America, and the Caribbean will generate generous support of massive investments from the public and the Top 500 Corporations of the United States. And will the peoples and business worlds of Mexico and the other participating nations in the Western Hemisphere not embrace the “Biden Doctrine”?

Related stories:
Part I – How Mexican Bamboos Can Make Joe Biden a Genius
Part II – How Mexican Bamboos Can Make Joe Biden a Genius

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