State of New Mexico > Environment Department > Ground Water Quality Bureau
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Harold Runnels Building Room N2250,
1190 St. Francis Drive, Santa Fe, NM  87505
Phone (505)827-2900 Fax (505)827-2965

Mission:  To preserve, protect and improve New Mexico's ground water quality for present and future generations.

Overview:  The role of the Ground Water Quality Bureau is to protect the environmental quality of New Mexico's ground water resources as mandated by the Water Quality Act and the Water Quality Control Commission (WQCC) regulations (20.6 NMAC), and to identify, investigate and clean-up contaminated sites which pose significant risks to human health and the environment. 

The Ground Water Quality Bureau:

  • Issues ground water pollution prevention permits
  • Implements the departments responsibilities under the new Mexico Mining Act to ensure that environmental issues are addressed and standards are met
  • Oversees ground water investigation and remediation activities
  • Identifies, investigates and remediates inactive hazardous waste sites through implementation of the federal Superfund program
  • Oversees agreements between the state and responsible parties
  • Implements the Voluntary Remediation Program

The Bureau also strives to increase industry and public understanding and awareness of the importance of safe ground water supplies in sustaining the quality of life in New Mexico for this and future generations, and the importance of protecting ground water quality through pollution prevention initiatives.

Revisions to Ground and Surface Water
Protection Regulations

The Water Quality Control Commission (WQCC) held a public hearing on the New Mexico Environment Department’s Petition to Amend the Ground and Surface Water Protection Regulations (20.6.2 NMAC) from November 14 – 17, 2017.

Documents associated with this proceeding are available on the WQCC website, at

Information about revision drafting process can be found on the
Revisions to Ground Water Quality Regulations webpage.

Hydrogeologic Framework of the Santa Fe Area
Hawley Geomatters, September 2016


Cleaning Up Groundwater in New Mexico: Certain Sites of Interest



New Ground Water Discharge Permit application

A New Discharge Permit Application form (non-dairy) is available, effective August 1, 2015. The previous version of the form will not be accepted after September 1, 2015. Applications already in progress are not affected. Please visit the GWQB Forms page for the most current application. Discharge permit applications for dairies should use the forms on the Dairy page.

The Ground Water Quality Bureau includes the following five sections:

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