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Wall Would Affect Endangered Species

Recently released federal documents show President Donald Trump's long-promised wall along the U.S.-Mexico border would have adverse impacts on endangered species and the Tohono O'Odham tribe.

A letter written from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to Customs and Border Protection says maintaining current roads, towers and lights, "is likely to adversely affect" the threatened northern Mexican garter snake and the endangered Sonoran pronghorn.

"Just maintaining the infrastructure on the border right now raises environmental concerns," said Austin Evers, executive director of American Oversight, a watchdog group based in Washington D.C. "If you then add on to that infrastructure a major wall and then much more pervasive maintenance operations into perpetuity, those concerns are going to be even greater."

Evers received almost 1,000 emails, letters and other documents through a Freedom Of Information Act request that substantiate concerns of communities along the border and environmentalists.

Known as “the informer” among her siblings, Laurel Morales came by reporting naturally.She’s been a public radio reporter since 1998, cutting tape with a razor blade at KQED’s California Report. She traded in her flip-flops for snow boots to work for Minnesota Public Radio, where she received her first digital recorder. But Morales has spent most of her career in northern Arizona where she’s had the honor to witness a Miss Navajo sheep butchering contest, a Havasupai medicine woman’s ceremony, and a group of blind teens hike the Grand Canyon.She joined KJZZ’s Fronteras Desk in 2011. In 2017, Morales produced a multi-platform project called Earth+Bone about what tribes believe to be sacred and what Westerners consider fair game. She’s won several awards for her work, including a national Edward R. Murrow Award for her continuing coverage of the Yarnell Hill Fire. She earned her master’s in journalism from Northwestern University’s Medill School of Journalism.