IMPERIAL BEACH, Calif. — A binational agreement between the United States and Mexico has pledged to invest $447 million into fixing the contaminated ocean waters caused by Tijuana sewage flow.   

“The people of San Diego cannot wait for open beaches any longer. We have waited long enough. Today’s announcement says – we don’t have to wait to much longer,” San Diego Mayor Todd Gloria said at a news conference held Thursday.  

The International Boundary and Water Commission announced the agreement has now been signed and will be worked on from both sides of the border. The money will go toward finding a long-term solution for the decades-long issues that have plagued San Diego beaches.

“Stay hopeful. We feel your pain. It’s not just I.B., it’s all over San Diego,” said Imperial Beach Mayor Serge Dedina at Thursday’s event. “We feel your pain and we are going to push as hard as we can, and we are not going to let up.”

The agreement was made possible with funds obtained by local representatives from the US-Mexico-Canada agreement, pledging $330 million and $144 million from the Mexican government.  

The money will go toward doubling the South Bay International Wastewater Treatment Plant and constructing a new treatment center in Mexico, at San Antonio de los Buenos.  

With the two new projects, the amount of Mexican sewage undergoing treatment will increase by 43 million gallons per day, reducing sewage both at the Tijuana River Valley and in the ocean.  

“Today might not be the final step to address this issue but it’s certainly a major step forward,” said Coronado Mayor Richard Bailey.  

The projects are scheduled to be completed by 2027.