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13039 Mexico - Wildfire Protection Agreement for the Common Border


   
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TREATIES AND OTHER INTERNATIONAL ACTS SERIES 13039

 

 

WILDFIRE PROTECTION

 

 

 

Agreement Between the
UNITED STATES OF AMERICA
and MEXICO

Signed at Mexico City June 4, 1999

and

Amending Agreement

Signed at Washington November 12, 2003

 

 


 

NOTE BY THE DEPARTMENT OF STATE

Pursuant to Public Law 89—497, approved July 8, 1966
(80 Stat. 271; 1 U.S.C. 113)—

“. . .the Treaties and Other International Acts Series issued
under the authority of the Secretary of State shall be competent
evidence . . . of the treaties, international agreements other than
treaties, and proclamations by the President of such treaties and
international agreements other than treaties, as the case may be,
therein contained, in all the courts of law and equity and of maritime
jurisdiction, and in all the tribunals and public offices of the
United States, and of the several States, without any further proof
or authentication thereof.”

 

MEXICO

Wildfire Protection

Agreement signed at Mexico City June 4, 1999;
Entered into force June 4, 1999.
And amending agreement.
Signed at Washington November 12, 2003;
Entered into force November 12, 2003.

WILDFIRE PROTECTION AGREEMENT BETWEEN
THE DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR AND THE DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE
OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA AND THE SECRETARIAT OF
ENVIRONMENT, NATURAL RESOURCES, AND FISHERIES OF
THE UNITED MEXICAN STATES FOR THE COMMON BORDER
The Department of the Interior and the Department of Agriculture
of the United States of America, on the one hand, and the
Secretariat of Environment, Natural Resources, and Fisheries of
the United Mexican States, on the other hand (hereinafter
referred to as the Parties);
CONSIDERING that many of the land areas along the approximately
3,200 kilometer (2,000 miles) United States-Mexico border are
located such that wildfires in one country may become a threat to
the resources of the other country; and
RECOGNIZING that it is desirable and in the public interest to
provide for coordinated action between both countries to
facilitate effective use of wildfire protection resources to
suppress wildfires on both sides of the border;
HEREBY AGREE AS FOLLOWS:
ARTICLE I
Purpose
The purpose of this Agreement is to enable wildfire protection
resources originating in the territory of one country to cross
the United States-Mexico border in order to suppress wildfires on
the other side of the border within the zone of mutual assistance
in appropriate circumstances.
The purpose of this Agreement is further to give authority for
Parties to cooperate on other fire management activities outside
the zone of mutual assistance.
ARTICLE II
Definitions
For the purposes of this agreement:
1. "Wildfire" means a fire that occurs in a "wildland" area,
such as a range or forest, in which development is
essentially non-existent except for roads, railroads, power
lines, and similar transportation facilities, and structures,
which if these exist, are widely scattered and are used
primarily for recreation or agricultural purposes.
2. "Wildfire protection resources" means personnel, supplies,
equipment, aircraft, vehicles, vessels, radios and specialized
machinery or other resources, whether owned or contracted, that
are intended for wildfire suppression or the transport of
wildfire suppression equipment or personnel.
3. "Zone of mutual assistance" means the area of up to 16
kilometers (10 miles) on each side of the United States-Mexico
border.
4. "Receiving Party" means the Party receiving wildfire
protection resources.
5. "Sending Party" means the party furnishing wildfire
protection resources.
ARTICLE III
Obligations
1. Each Party shall immediately consider the request of the
other Party, whether a Receiving Party or a Sending Party, for
cross-border movement of wildfire protection resources within the
zone of mutual assistance, and, to the fullest extent
practicable, promptly approve such request.
2. The Parties shall ensure that annual operating plans are
generated in accordance with Article VII.
3. Each Party may obtain, as appropriate, the participation of
its state, regional, local, private or tribal fire organizations
in the implementation of this Agreement, subject to its national
laws and regulations.
ARTICLE IV
Reimbursement
Each Party shall assume all of its costs and expenses of
furnishing wildland fire protection resources, including costs
for lost or damaged wildfire protection resources, according to
the performance of this Agreement, unless otherwise agreed by the
Parties.
ARTICLE V
Cross-Waiver of Claims
1. Each Party hereby waives its claims against the other Party
for compensation for loss, damage, personal injury, or death
occurring as a consequence of the performance of this Agreement.
2. Each Party shall, by contract or otherwise, extend the cross-
waiver of liability set forth in paragraph 1 above to any
contractors or subcontractors or agents or any state, regional,
local, private or tribal fire organizations it may designate or
assign to perform activities under this Agreement.
3. The cross-waiver of liability set forth in paragraph 1 above
shall not apply to:
(a) Claims between a Party and its agencies, employees,
contractors, subcontractors or agents;
(b) Claims arising from willful misconduct; and
(c) Claims arising from criminal conduct.
ARTICLE VI
Entry of Personnel and Equipment
The Parties are committed to work together, with the involved
agencies of their respective governments, to process appropriate
legal documentation, within the applicable laws and regulations
of both countries, and to otherwise facilitate entry to and exit
from its territory of all personnel engaged in wildfire
protection pursuant to this Agreement. Also, each Party shall
undertake all reasonable steps and use its best efforts, within
applicable laws and regulations of both countries, to facilitate
the admission of all supplies, equipment, aircraft, vehicles,
specialized machinery, or other equipment whether owned or
contracted, that are used or intended for use in wildfire
suppression or transport of wildfire suppression equipment or
personnel pursuant to this Agreement without entry fees and
without payment of any duties or taxes imposed by reason of
importation.
ARTICLE VII
Annual Operating Plans
1. Annual Operating Plans shall be concluded and executed
between the Parties.
2. Each Annual Operating Plan shall:
(a) Identify designated points of contact responsible for
fire suppression within the applicable subregion within the
zone of mutual assistance.
(b) Set forth specific criteria for approving requests for
wildfire protection resources;
3
(c) Develop plans for mobilization of wildfire protection
resources on each side of the United States-Mexico border;
(d) Establish procedures for efficient and timely
communication of relevant information between designated
points of contact;
(e) Provide for complete and timely reporting and record-
keeping of all wildfire suppression incidents occurring in
the subregion within the zone of mutual assistance;
(f) Identify the necessary procedures and legal
documentation, which are to be completed, with agencies of
the governments, for the expeditious cross-border movement
of wildfire protection resources;
(g) Specify the conditions and procedures for the
reimbursement, as deemed appropriate, of the Sending Party
for the-furnishing of wildfire protection resources; and
(h) Include terms consistent with Article V, a cross-
waiver for compensation for loss, damage, personal injury,
or death occurring in consequence of the performance of
this Agreement.
3. The Parties may recommend the development of operating plans
for other fire management activities outside the zone of mutual
assistance, subject to the approval of their respective
governments.
4. The Parties shall maintain on file copies of all Annual
Operating Plans.
ARTICLE VIII
Status of Personnel
1. Any service performed in furtherance of this Agreement by an
employee of a Party shall constitute service performed on behalf
of that Party.
2. The performance of a service under this Agreement by any
employee, contractor, subcontractor or agent of one Party shall
in no case render such person an employee, contractor,
subcontractor or agent of the other Party.
4
ARTICLE IX
Legal Considerations and Relationship to other Agreements
1. Activities under this Agreement shall be subject to the
applicable laws, regulations, and policies of each Party and
subject to the availability of funds.
2. This Agreement is without prejudice to rights and obligations
of the Parties under existing bilateral and multilateral
agreements.
ARTICLE X
Dispute Settlement
Any differences that arise in the interpretation or application
of the provisions of this Agreement or any Annual Operating Plan
negotiated pursuant hereto, shall be resolved by the Parties by
means of negotiations and consultations.
ARTICLE XI
Final Provisions
1. This Agreement shall enter into force upon signature by the
Parties and shall remain in force for five years.
2. This Agreement may only be amended or extended by mutual,
written agreement of the Parties, and such agreement shall
specify the date upon which such amendments shall take effect.
3. This Agreement may be terminated at any time by either Party
upon six months written notice to the other Party.
4. The termination of this Agreement shall not affect the
implementation of any fire suppression effort being carried out
under this Agreement at the time when it was in force.
Signed in Mexico City, this fourth day of June, 1999, in three
originals, in the English and Spanish languages, all texts being
equally authentic.
FOR THE UNITED STATES FOR THE SECRETARIAT OF ENVIRONMENT,
DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR: NATURAL RESOURCES AND FISHERIES OF
THE UNITED MEXICAN STATES
6
Bruce Babbitt
Julia Carabias Lillo
Secretary Secretary
FOR THE UNITED STATES
DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE


Anne Kennedy
Deputy Under Secretary
For Environment and Natural
Resources
AMENDMENT TO THE WILDFIRE PROTECTION AGREEMENT
BETWEEN THE DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR AND THE DEPARTMENT OF
AGRICULTURE OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA AND THE SECRETARIAT OF
ENVIRONMENT, NATURAL RESOURCES, AND FISHERIES OF THE UNITED MEXICAN
STATES FOR THE COMMON BORDER
Pursuant to its Article XI, the Wildfire Protection Agreement between the
Department of the Interior and the Department of Agriculture of the United States of America
and the Secretariat of Environment, Natural Resources, and Fisheries of the United Mexican
States for the Common Border, signed in Mexico City on June 4, 1999 (the Agreement), is
hereby amended in the following manner:
The title of the Agreement is amended to be The Wildfire Protection Agreement
between the Department of the Interior and the Department of Agriculture of the United States
of America and the Secretariat of Environment and Natural Resources and the National Forestry
Commission of the United Mexican States for the Common Border.
The Preamble is amended such that the "Parties" to the agreement are the
Department of the Interior and the Department of Agriculture of the United States of America
and the Secretariat of Environment and Natural Resources and the National Forestry
Commission of the United Mexican States.
Article XI is amended such that the Agreement is extended for an additional ten
years, and said extension shall take effect on June 4, 2004. All other amendments shall take
effect immediately.
DONE at Washington, this twelfth day of November, 2003, in the English and
Spanish languages, both texts being equally authentic.
THE UNITED STATES
DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR
FOR THE SECRETARIAT OF
ENVIRONMENT AND NATURAL
RESOURCES OF THE UNITED
MEXICAN STATES
FOR THE UNITED STATES AGRICULTURE
DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE
FOREST SERVICE
FOR THE NATIONAL FORESTRY
COMMISSION OF THE UNITED
MEXICAN STATES



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