Applying the NEPA/CEQA Process and Writing Effective NEPA Documents


Description

Participants in this highly acclaimed training workshop learn how to fulfill the spirit and letter of NEPA, CEQ, and CEQA while preparing documents. Interdisciplinary specialists who carefully manage the NEPA and CEQA processes will generate better NEPA documents that require less preparation time, and that facilitate informed decisions and specific comments.

Objectives

Upon completion of this workshop, participants will be able to do the following:

  • Manage the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) and California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) processes so that the spirit and the letter of the acts are fulfilled legally and efficiently
  • Implement the Council on Environmental Quality (CEQ) regulations and agency regulations
  • Oversee contractors who conduct environmental analyses and/or write Environmental Assessments (EAs) and Environmental Impact Statements (EISs)
  • Review the following documents for compliance with NEPA, CEQ regulations, and the agency implementing procedures:
    • EAs
    • EISs
    • Records Of Decision (RODs)
    • Findings Of No Significant Impact (FONSIs)
  • Write high-quality EAs, EISs, FONSIs, Notices Of Intent (NOIs), and other environmental documents using approved NEPA, CEQ, Government Printing Office (GPO), and agency-specific guidelines
  • Overview of NEPA and CEQA 
    Learn about the intent and goals of the statutes, the role of NEPA in agency planning and decisionmaking, NEPA and CEQA frameworks and the summary of steps in the processes, the difference between and integration of NEPA and CEQA processes, tiering and the “Federal Handle.”
  • NEPA and CEQA - Coverage and Exclusion 
    Learn about the proposed action regulatory review process, including determining the appropriate level of NEPA documentation (CE, EA, EIS), and processes and strategies for each.
  • Preparing Joint NEPA/CEQA Documents 
    Work with more than one lead agency, understanding the similarities and differences. Learn about the roles of lead and cooperating agencies, applicants, and Fishery Management Councils.
  • Understanding the NEPA and CEQ Regulations 
    Understand NEPA law, its fundamental principles, and the relationship of the analysis process to the documents.
  • Selecting the Appropriate Level of Documentation 
    Understand the difference and significance of NEPA document types.
  • Developing Alternatives 
    Discover how to develop a reasonable range of alternatives.
  • Identifying Issues and Scoping 
    Learn to define cause-and-effect relationships, plan public involvement strategies, assemble records, and identify other relevant environmental laws.
  • Predicting Environmental Consequences 
    Learn a systematic process for quantitatively and qualitatively predicting effects.
  • Understanding NEPA Decisionmaking and Decisionmaker Skills 
    Understand the legal roles of FONSIs and RODs. Learn skills to identify the actions needed.

Audience

Participants for this training generally include resource specialists, team leaders, decisionmakers, and other agency professionals who must understand the NEPA process to fully execute their responsibilities.

Process

How to Manage the NEPA/CEQA Process is an interactive workshop designed to build practical skills. For optimum learning, class size is limited to between 15 and 25 participants.This 3-day workshop is a carefully designed combination of the following:

  • 25% Lecture
  • 75% Discussion and exercises

Materials

Participants receive the following:

  • Comprehensive workshop manual
  • Workshop resources workbook