Violence in Mexico City over limited access to clean water

Americas Now

“Walter is a blessing and a curse for San Bartolo,” said a resident of the small town in the outskirts of the Mexican capital. “Everyone wants a piece of it.” The full name of this pre-Hispanic settlement, San Bartolo Ameyalco, reveals how deep its connection runs to the natural resource. “Ameyalco” means “place near the fresh water spring” in the native language of the Aztecs. CCTV’s Franc Contreras filed this report from San Bartolo, Oaxaca, Mexico.

Violence in Mexico City over limited access to clean water

Violence in Mexico City over limited access to clean water

“Walter is a blessing and a curse for San Bartolo,” said a resident of the small town in the outskirts of the Mexican capital. “Everyone wants a piece of it.” The full name of this pre-Hispanic settlement, San Bartolo Ameyalco, reveals how deep its connection runs to the natural resource. “Ameyalco” means “place near the fresh water spring” in the native language of the Aztecs.CCTV's Franc Contreras filed this report from San Bartolo, Oaxaca, Mexico.

People in San Bartolo live under constant stress because of water scarcity, in spite of the fresh water spring nearby. Some in the community fear the water is being pumped past the impoverished town to Santa Fe, one of the most affluent districts in the country.

In 2014, the otherwise peaceful streets of San Bartolo made national headlines when a protest over access to water was met with a forceful response by authorities. The locals clashed with a large contingent of riot police leaving over 100 injured and five people arrested.

These tensions are likely to escalate even further as projections estimate that Mexico City’s fresh water sources will not be able to quench the thirst of its growing population.