As a founding member of the Climate and Clean Air Coalition (CCAC), Mexico knows that short-lived climate pollutant (SLCP) mitigation is integral to global efforts to tackle air pollution and near-term climate change. Mexico created a strong foundation for this work out of the gate when it passed the General Law on Climate Change in 2012, creating a legal obligation to address SLCPs. The country then went on to set ambitious targets and policies to do so, including a 25 percent reduction target for Black Carbon emissions in their 2015 climate change commitments that could increase to as much as 40 percent with international support.

Many of these efforts culminated in 2019 when Mexico launched a National Strategy to Reduce Short-Lived Climate Pollutants, which recognizes the potential of achieving local air quality benefits while reducing near-term temperature increase. Implementing the strategy will achieve its Black Carbon reduction targets by 2030. This strategy was bolstered by the previous year’s Integrated SLCP strategy to Improve Air Quality and Reduce the Impact of Climate Change, which was developed by the National Institute of Ecology and Climate Change (INECC). The strategy identifies nine mitigation measures across eight sectors including transport, sugar mills, brick kilns, livestock, air conditioning, solid waste, and residential energy.

Mexico: reducing pollutants that contribute to air pollution and climate change

Mexico: reducing pollutants that contribute to air pollution and climate change
Former Environment Secretary, Víctor Manuel Toledo, explains why Mexico is reducing short-lived climate pollutant emissions to address air pollution and climate change. (Video recorded Sep. 2019)

Mexico has worked closely with CCAC in multiple Initiatives, including participating in the SNAP (Supporting National Planning for action on short-lived climate pollutants) initiative to initiate a national planning exercise on SLCP mitigation. To do this, the CCAC helped create institutional capacity within INECC so that SLCP mitigation activities could be coordinated across all relevant ministries, agencies, and research institutions. Then, an extensive consultative process began to identify primary emissions sources as well as data and information gaps. Then a national SLCP inventory was created and Mexico’s Special Programme on Climate Change was launched in 2014, with a focus on SLCP reductions. Mexico was further a partner in the 2013 Global Strategy to Introduce Low Sulfur Fuels and Cleaner Diesel Vehicles, the first global plan to reduce small particulate and black carbon emissions from cars, buses, and trucks by over 90 percent by 2030. Mexico has also been involved in the CCAC’s gas flaring technology demonstrations, a critical way to reduce methane emissions.

In 2018, Mexico City joined several other cities across the country by becoming a BreatheLife member and establishing an air quality monitoring system and an emissions inventory. The city implemented a variety of clean energy efforts, including removing lead from gasoline, reducing sulphur content in diesel fuel, closing an oil refinery, and reformulating liquified petroleum gas for cooking and heating. The city is also working to improve public transportation by equipping buses with newer diesel technologies, introducing electric taxis, and using green inspectors and remote sensors to identify high emitting vehicles. Mexico City’s ambitious actions on air pollution exemplify this vital work: between 1990 and 2015, they added 3.2 to 3.4 years to the average life expectancy of citizens and saved 22,500-28,000 lives.

Read below for more examples of Mexico's work. 

CCAC activities

Activity | National Planning and Policy
Mexico | Future
The aim of this project is to project provide technical assistance to support Mexico’s Ministry of Environment and Natural Resources in developing a short-lived climate pollutant (SLCP) programme to...
Activity | National Planning and Policy
Mexico | Ongoing
With support from the Coalition's SNAP intiative, Mexico has taken ambitious leadership in order to address short-lived climate pollutant (SLCP) emissions and the impacts of air pollution and climate...
Mexico's national SLCP planning team
Workstream | National Planning and Policy
Regional cooperation is essential to raise ambition and scale up short-lived climate pollutant mitigation actions. Since 2012, the Coalition’s SNAP initiative has supported regional workshops that...
Activity | Health, National Planning and Policy
BreatheLife is a global campaign that mobilizes cities and individuals to take action on air pollution to protect our health and the planet. The campaign is led by the World Health Organization (WHO...

Other activities

Policies and Plans

  • In 2020, an Intersecretarial Commission approved the Special Program of Climate Change 2020-2024 and endorsed the Mexico’s commitments to the Paris Agreement which include the goal to reduce emissions of black carbon.
  • In 2018, the Sixth National Communication on Climate Change outlined Mexico's actions to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and short-lived climate pollutants and adapt to the impacts of climate change.
  • The 2018 report Mitigation Actions Proposals by 2030 outlined consequential actions for the oil and gas, transport, waste, industry, household energy, and agriculture sectors.
  • The 2018 Short-lived Climate Forcers report was published which both outlined the importance of mitigation of SLCPs and laid out Mexico’s timeline of actions to effectively do so.
  • In 2015, at the Yucatan Peninsula Regional Comission on Climate Change the governments of Yucatan, Campeche, and Quintana Roo (states that make up the Yucatan Peninsula), created a regional partnership which established the institutional framework for implementing regional public policies on climate change.
  • In 2015, Mexico became the first developing country to submit a climate pledge to the Paris Climate Change Conference, which included greenhouse gas and Black Carbon reductions of 25 percent by 2030.
  • The 2012 General Law on Climate Change proposed reductions of greenhouse gas emissions of 22 percent by 2030 and of Black Carbon emissions of 51 percent. The law was then revised in 2018.

Air Quality

  • In 2017, a programme to improve air quality in Mexico City established six strategic lines and 38 actions that require the active participation of all sectors to mitigate black carbon.
  • In 2017, Campeche joined BreatheLife with a focus on sustainable development measures that include increased green space, better bicycle accommodation, walking paths, and long-term plans for efficient mass transit.
  • In 2016, Jalisco State joined BreatheLife and created an 11-point action plan on climate change and air quality. It also created a vehicle registration updating process to get high-polluting vehicles off the road, apply more rigorous testing procedures, and impose higher penalties for failure to comply.  A “Green Plate” program gives state subsidized financial incentives to all electric and hybrid vehicles and they’re in the process of creating largest green fund in Mexico.
  • In 2018, Morelos joined BreatheLife and introduced the ProAire Programme which addressed eight areas of energy consumption that include energy efficiency, public transport promotion, institutional capacity building, and scientific research
  •  In 2013, Mexico City won the 2013 C40 and Siemens Climate Leadership Awards’ Air Quality category for ProAire IV, the most recent phase of its ProAire programme.


  • In 2020, Mexico continued the process of developing and implementing federal regulations to reduce methane emissions from the oil and gas sector, becoming the first country in Latin America to do so.
  • In 2019, Mexico issued guidelines for transfer stations, transport operations, and distribution of hydrocarbons through pipelines that included a zero-tolerance policy for Methane emissions from non-emergency venting.
  • In 2019, Mexico held four workshops to familiarize industry leaders with the country’s Methane Guidelines and help them better implement them.
  • In 2018, Mexico published guidelines for the prevention and control of methane emissions from the hydrocarbon sector including mandating that facilities develop protocols to control methane emissions by identifying and measuring all sources of methane. It is the first action of its kind in Latin America.
  • In 2018, Mexico published environmental protection guidelines for the design, operation, and dismantling of liquified natural gas that included provisions that will help with methane control, such as inspection and maintenance provision and detectors for gas leaks.
  • In 2018, Mexico developed official standards for transporting natural gas that included regular inspection components and guidelines for monitoring, detecting, and classifying leaks.

Energy Efficiency and HFCs

  • In 2019, energy efficiency and user safety requirements were established for air conditioners, including minimum levels of energy efficiency for room air conditioners sold in the national market.
  • In 2018, the Ministry of Energy of Mexico and the National Commission on Energy Efficiency in collaboration with Autonomous University of Mexico State developed an online diploma training on energy efficiency for municipal services focused on local governments.
  • In 2018, Mexico established an energy efficiency standard for split air conditioners and established the minimum level of seasonal energy efficiency ratio that must be met by divided air conditions.
  • In 2017, the Energy Efficiency Roadmap was published as a part of the Energy Transition Law mandate. The Roadmap was published in January 2017 and contains 66 energy efficiency actions and the stakeholders, technical resources, and timeline required to accomplish them.
  • In 2017, the Excellence in Energy Efficiency Pilot Project E4 Programme started voluntary labelling of products and buildings that comply with the highest standards of energy efficiency, which was based on Energy Star methodology.
  • In 2015, the Energy Transition Law established recognition of excellence in energy efficiency as a voluntary process of certification.


  • In 2018, heavy-duty vehicle emission standards were updated allowing either U.S. 2004 or EURO IV equivalent standards until June 2019, new AA and B standards until Jan 2019, with the option for compliance with AA standards allowing equivalent with either Euro V or US 2007 ending in December 2020.
  • In 2016, Fuel Quality standards limited sulphur in gasoline and diesel
  • In 2016, Mexico City joined mayors of Paris and Madrid in a pledge to ban diesel vehicles by 2025.

Brick sector

  • In 2020, Mexico, with support from the CCAC, developed the first low-emission multi-chamber kiln for the artisanal brick sector in the areas affected by the 2017 earthquake.
  • In 2018, Mexico prepared a study on developing a business model to modernize the traditional brick sector of brick production and reduce SLCP emissions.
  • In 2017, Mexico prepared a market analysis to support transformational projects in the brick-making sector. 


2020 | Policies, Plans & Regulations

This strategy outlines concrete actions by Mexico to reduce black carbon and methane from major sources. The full implementation of this strategy would reduce black carbon emissions by...

2018 | Event Documents
, National Institute of Ecology and Climate Change of Mexico (INECC)

This is the report of the Regional Expert Workshop on Air Quality and Short-lived Climate Pollutants that took place from 21 to 23 March 2018. It brought together participants from 12 countries...

Regional Workshop on Short-Lived Climate Pollutants
2017 | Reports, Case Studies & Assessments
Center for Human Rights and Environment

Within the framework of the Brick Initiative of the Climate and Clean Air Coalition (CCAC), and the activities of the Public Policy Network of Latin America for the Clean Production of Bricks (PAN...

Jalisco Mexico Policy Dialogue Report
2017 | Reports, Case Studies & Assessments
, John Rogers, Robin Kaenzig and Steven J. Rogers The Sustainable Transport and Emissions Services Company

This Mexico Freight Assessment was conducted in 2017 for the International Council on Clean Transportation (ICCT) by the Sustainable Transport and Emissions Services Company, TSTES SA de CV,...

2017 | Reports, Case Studies & Assessments
, Cambio Climático y el Centro de Innovación Avanzada en Tecnologías Competitivas (CIATEC)

This study aims to raise the level of knowledge about Mexico's construction sector through a market analysis of construction materials like block, extruded brick and handcrafted ”ladrillo”. It...

Regional Level Market Analysis of the Construction Sector and Pilot Project based on a Public Policy Portfolio in order to reduce SLCP of Traditional Brickyards in México


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Mexico D.F.
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