Mexico City, June 08th, 2021.
The federal government analyzes the possibility of publishing the draft of the Mexican Official Standard PROY-NOM-001-SEMARNAT-2017 («Draft NOM»), which establishes the permissible limits of pollutants in wastewater discharges in receiving bodies owned by the Nation, which would replace NOM-001-SEMARNAT-1996, which establishes the maximum permissible limits of pollutants in wastewater discharges in national waters and property.
The Draft NOM was submitted to the National Advisory Committee for Standardization of the Environment and Natural Resources, which on December 19th, 2017, approved it as a Draft Mexican Official Standard and ordered its publication for public consultation, which took place on January 5, 2018.
The main changes contained in the Draft NOM and that would become effective with its publication, are as follows:
- Section 2 «Normative References» would be updated to revise the list of Mexican Standards for sampling and analysis of the parameters used as reference for the application of the Draft NOM, eliminating those that have been cancelled or modified.
- The maximum permissible limits of pollutants in wastewater discharges to receiving bodies of national property will be modified. With this modification, in general, the limits will be stricter.
- New parameters are incorporated and regulated: Chemical Oxygen Demand (COD), Toxicity and Color.
- The «Total Organic Carbon» parameter will be incorporated to measure the organic pollutant load in waters with a concentration of more than 1000 mg/l of chlorides.
- The fecal coliform parameter would be replaced by the determination of Escherichia coli.
- The way in which wastewater discharges are classified will be modified, eliminating the use of the water to be discharged (agricultural irrigation, urban public, etc.), focusing on the nature of the receiving body (rivers, streams, canals and drains; reservoirs, lakes and lagoons; Mexican marine areas and estuaries; and soils).
It is important to note that in the event that the Draft NOM is published in the Official Gazette of the Federation, it would be mandatory for those responsible for wastewater discharges into any type of receiving body owned by the Nation.
The standard would not be applicable to water discharges from drains intended exclusively for storm water or to discharges released directly into municipal drainage and sewage systems.
Our environmental practice group is at your service to clarify any questions you may have on this subject.
S I N C E R E L Y,
Daniel Del Río
Carolina Nogal Gómez