Date of Award


Degree Name

Master of Arts


Latin American and Border Studies


Josiah Heyman


In recent years, researchers have extensively studied the spatial distribution of social demographics and urban tree canopy (UTC) in urban cities, but very few, to this date, address U.S.-Mexico border cities. To date, there is no research that assesses the distribution of urban tree canopy (UTC) in the city of El Paso, Texas, and Ciudad Juarez, Chihuahua, along the U.S.- Mexico border. Leveraging advanced mapping techniques and GIS tools, the study performs comparisons between countries (Juárez vs. El Paso urbanized areas and intra-country (within each country). It compares land cover classifications, assesses variations in UTC distribution across census tracts and Área GeoEstadística Básica (AGEBs), and explores potential spatial clusters. Drawing on landcover data with a resolution of 0.6m and 8.5m, the research contributes to the global understanding of urban green infrastructure (UGI) distribution, such as UTC. Also, using census data, the study addresses the distribution of vulnerability through the construction of the Binational Social Vulnerability Index (BSVI) for Paso Del Norte. The analysis confirms previous studies’ assessment of urban morphology in Paso Del Norte, identifying clustering along the international boundary and city centers. Results reveal inequitable access to UTC across Paso Del Norte, with higher social vulnerability in Ciudad Juarez and census units closer to the border in El Paso. By employing GIS, this study advances knowledge on UTC distribution, addresses environmental injustices, and sheds light on trends in U.S.-Mexico border cities' UTC distribution.




Received from ProQuest

File Size

268 p.

File Format


Rights Holder

Melanie Escobar