EnglishEnvironmental Law

PUBLICATION OF REFORMS, TO THE ENVIRONMENTAL LAW FOR THE PROTECTION OF THE LAND IN THE FEDERAL DISTRICT, SANCTIONING CERTAIN INFRINGEMENTS TO THE DISPOSITIONS FORESEEN IN THE LAW WITH MINIMUM FINES OF MORE THAN FOUR MILLION PESOS.

On June 25th, 2019, the Decree by which articles 214 Bis, 214 Ter, 214 Quater, 214 Quintiles and 214 Sexies were added to the Environmental Law for the Protection of the Land of the Federal District was published in the Mexico City Gazette (the “Law” and the “Decree”, respectively). The Decree came into force on June 26th of the same month and year.

The published reforms set forth a catalogue of infractions to the dispositions foreseen in the Law and establish a minimum and a maximum amount of the fines that, in each case, the Ministry of the Environment of Mexico City (“SEDEMA”) is empowered to impose to the offenders.

Special attention must be given to the violations referred to in section 3 of the present informative note, same that are sanctioned with a minimum fine of $ 4,224,500.00 MXN (four million two hundred and twenty-four thousand five hundred pesos 00/100) and a maximum of $ 8,449,000.00 MXN (eight million four hundred and forty-nine thousand pesos 00/100).

The infractions and fines foreseen in the Decree are the described below:

1.Fine between $ 8,449.00 MXN and $ 84,490.00 MXN, for those who deny authorized personnel access to the establishment or establishments subject of environmental  inspections, in the terms foreseen in the written order, as foreseen in article 205 of the Law.

2. Fine between $ 422.45[1] MXN and $ 6,759,200.00 MXN to whomever:

  • Does not use equipment or systems that control air emissions, so that the maximum permissible levels set forth in the Mexican Official Standards and the corresponding local environmental standards are not exceeded; in accordance to the obligations set forth insection I of article 135 of the Law,
  • Does not measure and report its air polluting emission, in accordance to the formats established by SEDEMA, as set forth in section II of article 135 of the Law (i.e. annual inventory of polluting emissions),
  • Fails to present the notices referred to in sections VI and VII of article 135 of the Law (i.e. anticipated notice for programmed shutdowns, immediate notice for circumstantial shutdowns, immediate notice for control equipment or system malfunction), and/or
  • Conducts works or activities referred to in article 46 of the Law that, due to their location, dimensions, characteristics or scope, produce environmental impacts and omits to file the Environmental Compliance Declaration before SEDEMA, as foreseen in article 58 Bis of the Law.

3. Fine between $ 4,224,500.00 MXN and $8,449,000.00 MXN, to whomever:

  • Carries out works or activities of exploitation or utilization of resources in protected natural areas without the corresponding authorisation,
  • Conducts works or activities causing or that may cause a negative environmental impact without the corresponding authorization or, holding it, conducting them against the terms and conditions set forth in the authorisation deriving from the filed environmental impact assessment,
  • Carries out works or activities causing or that may cause a negative environmental impact without the corresponding authorization or, holding it, conducting them against the terms and conditionsof the Sole Environmental License or its renewal,
  • Discharges industrial waste waters exceeding the maximum permissible levels into the drainage and sewerage system, as well as discharging into bodies of water or the drainage and sewerage system without complying with the criteria, regulations and Mexican Official Standards,
  • Does not install waste water treatment plants or systems, in accordance to the criteria, regulations and Mexican Official Standards,
  • Does not comply with the Territory’s Ecological Ordinance Programs, the Declarations of Environmental Value Area and Protected Natural Areas as well as its Management and Recovery Programs, the standards and any other applicable provision,
  • Does not hold the corresponding authorisation to handle and dispose wastes in terms of article 172 of the  Law (i.e. Sole Environmental License for solid wastes generators), and/or
  • In matters of environmental impact, the provider of services that does not behave in accordance to the obligations set forth in the Law or that behaves in a proven negligent manner in such a way that said behaviour causes an environmental harm or danger.

4. The violations to any other provision of the Law or the dispositions deriving from therein, from the Mexican Official Standards or the official standards issued by SEDEMA, different from the expressly stated in any other article of said Law over which no explicit sanction is provided, will be sanctioned with a fine between $ 168,980.00 MXN and $ 844,900.00 MXN.

The lawyers in the environmental law practise of the Firm are at your service to answer any questions regarding the content herein.

SINCERELY,

Daniel del Riodelrio@basham.com.mx
Ricardo Evangelistarevangelista@basham.com.mx
Mariana Arrietamarrieta@basham.com.mx

Mexico City, July 10th, 2019.


[1] This amount. published in the Decree, concurs with the one approved by the Mexico City Congress in session of April 25, 2019.

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