NMED Proposes Changes to New Mexico’s Water Protection Regulations
Amigos Bravos Weighs in on Proposed Changes to
Ground and Surface Water Protection Regulations
The New Mexico Environment Department's (NMED) is proposing changes to regulations that oversee Ground and Surface Water Protection in New Mexico (20.6.2 NMAC). Amigos Bravos submitted comments on the proposed rule revisions during two separate comment periods.
In our comments Amigos Bravos communicated concerns with NMED's proposal to add a definition of "discharge permit amendments" to the regulations. These permit amendments would allow the discharge of increased volume and concentration of pollutants into New Mexico's ground water without public notice. Amigos Bravos also opposes NMED's proposal to get rid of the current 5-year limit on water quality variances, which are provisions that allow polluters to discharge above standards.
Amigos Bravos does applaud NMED's proposal to increase permit fees for the first time in over a decade. The current fee structure for state discharge permits are outrageously low, and do not begin to cover the cost to New Mexico tax payers of issuing, monitoring, and enforcing state discharge permits. Amigos Bravos supports NMED in taking steps to decrease the amount that New Mexico citizens subsidize the issuance of permits to discharge pollution into New Mexico's water resources.
A full copy of our comments can be viewed here.