U.S. and Mexico Struggle to Clean Up Rio Grande

LAREDO — When the Rio Grande is swollen with rain, as it was recently in Laredo, it’s hard to tell that more than 5 million gallons of raw sewage spill into its waters every day.

But kayak through the little creeks on the side of the river bordering Mexico, and the odor is unmistakable.

So are the sights — chocolate-brown water, floating dog carcasses, dead fish.

“The smell was terrible. You couldn’t stand it,” Amanda Perez, one of two commissioners in the border town of Rio Bravo, said after a kayaking trip on the river with local border officials and ...

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