New Mexico
Environment Department

Contact Information:
(505) 827-2855 MAIN // 1-800-219-6157 (toll free)
Environmental Emergencies:
505-827-9329 (24 hrs)

Ground Water Quality Bureau

Permitting Process FAQs

Q. How long does it take to get a ground water Discharge Permit?

A. The shortest amount of time is approximately four months, but it may be much longer. It depends on the complexity of the site and whether the application contains all needed information. There is a little more than three months built into the process by regulation (determining administrative completeness and fulfilling various public notices), and NMED needs time to evaluate the technical merits of your application.

Q. Can you explain the permitting process?


Q. What are PN-1 and PN-2?

A. When you apply for a ground water Discharge Permit, you have to notify the public of your intention to discharge….this is PN-1. When NMED issued a draft permit, the discharger and the public can comment on the permit…….this is the PN-2. You can find more information about the public notice process here.

Q. How much is the permit fee?

A. Permit fees are set by the discharge volume and type of discharge. See NMAC for the specific amount.

Q. Can I pay the fee in installments rather than all at once?

A. Yes, you can pay the fee in five yearly installments; just send 1/5 the fee when the invoice is sent and you will automatically be sent yearly invoices.

Q. Why do I have to fill out the application completely again if I am renewing the permit and nothing has changed?

A. The regulations require the submission of a full application, even for a simple renewal. Many people other than the NMED technical reviewer may view the application, and they are not intimately familiar with your site. Also, five years is a long time for nothing to change- often there are new people, phone numbers, operators and operational changes that need to be included for NMED to properly consider the permit renewal.