The graphic, posted to visual.ly, also breaks down drug deaths by region.
Check it out:
Far from being a south-of-the-U.S.-Mexico-border problem alone, at least 1,000 U.S. cities reported the presence of at least one of four Mexican cartels in 2010. Meanwhile, south of the border, the machinery of drug creation and facilitation grind away, spitting out addicts in the U.S. and more than 50,000 dead bodies in Mexico since 2006. The cartels are looking to spread their tentacles wider.
With this in mind, the National Post’s graphics team takes a look at the flow of drugs across the continent.
A United States border patrol agent opened fire while responding to reports of alleged drug smugglers on Arizona’s southern border late Wednesday night, the U.S. Border Patrol.
Nicholas Ivie was killed before daybreak on October 2 as he responded to a tripped ground sensor in a well-known smuggling corridor near Naco, Arizona. A second agent was shot and wounded, while a third was unharmed.
Agents witnessed the smugglers drop a narcotics load on the Arizona side of the border and flee to Mexico, the agency said. One agent discharged his firearm after he was pelted with stones at the scene after his verbal commands were disregarded, the agency said.
Ivie, 30, was the fourth Border Patrol agent to die in violent circumstances in less than two years in Arizona, and his death heightened concern about border security in a state at the forefront of the national immigration debate in a presidential election year.
The Drugs and Where They Come From
Methamphetamines have become a sophisticated international business, which includes securing supplies from as far away as Asia, processing the methamphetamine in large, elaborate labs in Mexico, and transporting the drugs across the U.S. border via tunnels, commercial vehicles or human mules. Mexico is estimated to supply 70% of the methamphetamine consumed In the United States.
Mexican marijuana production is concentrated in nine states: Sinaloa, Nayarit, Jalisco, Michoacan, Guerrero, Oaxaca, Chihuahua, Sonora and Durango; Guerrero, Nayarit and Michoacan are the traditional production areas, but U.S. intelligence reports say large cartels have shifted their grow-ops to avoid increasing eradication efforts by the Mexican government and to get closer to the United States. The cartels also operate large, open-air-grow-ops in more northerly states, such as Oregon and Washington. There are reports cartels are increasingly building connections to groups east of the Mississippi River.
Cocaine is the most lucrative of illegal drugs. The United Nations estimates that sales of the drug net $88-billion a year on the street. Most shipments of cocaine involve numerous parts of the cartel federations. While the largest federations were once Colombian, now it appears they are Mexican. The UN estimates two-thirds of the cocaine that left the Andean region of South America for the United States In 2008 passed through the hands of Mexican cartels.
Most Colombian heroin flows to the United States directly via commercial airlines – primarily to New York and Miami. The Central America-Mexican corridor appears to serve as a secondary transit route for South American heroin. The drug is moved by cartels to northern Mexico for smuggling across the U.S.’s southwest border in vehicles or on foot.