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Update on the NEPA Regs - Our Thoughts (Cont.)

Last week we talked a little about some of the proposed changes to the NEPA regulations. To keep the post to a reasonable length we focused on the two biggest proposed changes. The elimination of the separate discussion on direct, indirect and cumulative impacts and the mandated timelines and page lengths. Today we'll talk about two more: Change (1) the new definition of a "reasonable alternative". One of the hallmarks of the NEPA process is to not only examine the environmental effects of the Proposed Action but also to analyze the potential environmental effects of a reasonable range of alternatives. The current CEQ regulations provide little direction on determining the reasonableness of

Update to the NEPA Regs - Our Thoughts

Last week we published a link to the Federal Register where the CEQ has posted their proposed rule changes to the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA). As I suspected, several firms (mostly attorneys) have taken the opportunity to wade through that document to see exactly what those changes are. Why repeat that effort when it's been done so well already I always say, so instead of looking at what the proposed changes are, I want to take a few minutes and look at their potential effect on environmental impact analysis. To keep this post to a manageable length, I'll only focus on a couple of changes at a time, starting with what I think are the two biggest and most important changes. Here

Update to the Regulations Implementing the Procedural Provisions of the National Environmental Polic

The Council on Environmental Quality (CEQ) is proposing to update its regulations for implementing the procedural provisions of the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA). The current Administration is presenting this as means to modernize and clarify regulations to facilitate more efficient, effective, and timely NEPA reviews by Federal agencies in connection with proposals for agency action. I've listed below, verbatim, what CEQ is stating these proposed changes would accomplish. Specifically CEQ is proposing to "...revise and modernize its NEPA regulations to facilitate more efficient, effective, and timely NEPA reviews by Federal agencies." CEQ states that the "...proposed updates and

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