Home
gpo.gov
govinfo.gov

e-CFR Navigation Aids

Browse

Simple Search

Advanced Search

 — Boolean

 — Proximity

 

Search History

Search Tips

Corrections

Latest Updates

User Info

FAQs

Agency List

Incorporation By Reference

eCFR logo

Related Resources

Electronic Code of Federal Regulations

We invite you to try out our new beta eCFR site at https://ecfr.federalregister.gov. We have made big changes to make the eCFR easier to use. Be sure to leave feedback using the Help button on the bottom right of each page!

e-CFR data is current as of October 22, 2020

Title 49Subtitle BChapter V → Part 520


Title 49: Transportation


PART 520—PROCEDURES FOR CONSIDERING ENVIRONMENTAL IMPACTS


Contents

Subpart A—General

§520.1   Purpose and scope.
§520.2   Policy.
§520.3   Definitions.
§520.4   Applicability.
§520.5   Guidelines for identifying major actions significantly affecting the environment.

Subpart B—Procedures

§520.21   Preparation of environmental reviews, negative declarations, and notices of intent.
§520.22   Maintenance of a list of actions.
§520.23   Preparation of draft environmental impact statements.
§520.24   Internal processing of draft environmental impact statements.
§520.25   External review of draft environmental impact statements.
§520.26   Public hearings.
§520.27   Legislative actions.
§520.28   Preparation of final environmental impact statements.
§520.29   Internal review of final environmental impact statements.
§520.30   Availability of final environmental impact statements.
§520.31   Amendments or supplements.
§520.32   Emergency action procedures.
§520.33   Timing of proposed NHTSA actions.
§520.34   Comments on environmental statements prepared by other agencies.
Attachment 1 to Part 520—Form and Content of Statement
Attachment 2 to Part 520—Areas of Environmental Impact and Federal Agencies and Federal-State Agencies With Jurisdiction by Law or Special Expertise To Comment Thereon
Attachment 3 to Part 520—Offices Within Federal Agencies and Federal-State Agencies for Information Regarding the Agencies' Impact Statements for Which Comments Are Requested
Attachment 4 to Part 520—State and Local Agency Review of Impact Statements

Authority: Secs. 102(2)(A), 102(2)(C), Pub. L. 91-190, 83 Stat. 853 (42 U.S.C. 4332); secs. 2(b), 4(f), Pub. L. 89-670, 80 Stat. 931 (49 U.S.C. 1651(b), 1653(f)); E.O. 11514, 35 FR 4247; 40 CFR part 1500; DOT Order 5610.1B, 39 FR 35234; delegations of authority at 49 CFR 1.45, 1.51.

Source: 40 FR 52396, Nov. 10, 1975, unless otherwise noted.

return arrow Back to Top

Subpart A—General

return arrow Back to Top

§520.1   Purpose and scope.

(a) Section 102(2)(C) of the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969 (83 Stat. 853; 42 U.S.C. 4332(2)(C)), as implemented by Executive Order 11514 (3 CFR, 1966-1970 Comp., p. 902) and the Council on Environmental Quality's Guidelines of April 23, 1971 (36 FR 7724), requires that all agencies of the Federal Government prepare detailed environmental statements on proposals for legislation and other major Federal actions significantly affecting the quality of the human environment. The purpose of the Act is to build into the agency decision-making process careful consideration of all environmental aspects of proposed actions.

(b) This part specifies National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) procedures for conducting environmental assessments and reviews, and for the preparation of environmental impact statements on proposals for legislation and other major agency actions significantly affecting the quality of the human environment.

return arrow Back to Top

§520.2   Policy.

The agency will strive to carry out the full intent and purpose of the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969 and related orders and statutes, and take positive steps to avoid any action which could adversely affect the quality of the human environment.

return arrow Back to Top

§520.3   Definitions.

(a) Environmental assessment is a written analysis describing the environmental impact of a proposed or ongoing agency action, submitted to the agency either by its grantees or contractors, or by any person outside the agency as part of any program or project proposal within the scope of activities listed in §520.4(b).

(b) Environmental review is a formal evaluation undertaken by the agency, culminating in a brief document (the environmental review report), to determine whether a proposed or ongoing NHTSA action may have a significant impact on the environment. The review document will be included in the proposed or ongoing agency action, and either support a negative declaration or recommend the preparation of a draft environmental impact statement.

(c) Draft environmental impact statement (DEIS) means a preliminary statement on the environmental impact of a proposed or ongoing NHTSA action which is circulated for comment and review within and outside NHTSA.

(d) Final environmental impact statement (FEIS) means a detailed statement which, pursuant to section 102(2)(C) of the National Environmental Policy Act, identifies and analyzes the anticipated environmental impact of a proposed or ongoing NHTSA action.

(e) Negative declaration means a statement prepared subsequent to an environmental review, which states that a proposed or ongoing NHTSA action will have no significant environmental impact and therefore does not require a draft or final environmental impact statement.

return arrow Back to Top

§520.4   Applicability.

(a) Scope. This part applies to all elements of NHTSA, including the Regional Offices.

(b) Actions covered. Except as provided in paragraph (e) of this section, this part applies to the following agency actions and such actions and proposals as may be sponsored jointly with another agency:

(1) New and continuing programs and projects; budget proposals; legislative proposals by the agency; requests for appropriations; reports on legislation initiated elsewhere where the agency has primary responsibility for the subject matter involved; and any renewals or reapprovals of the foregoing;

(2) Research, development, and demonstration projects; formal approvals of work plans; and associated contracts;

(3) Rulemaking and regulatory actions, including Notices of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM); requests for procurement (RFP); requests for grants (Annual Work Programs); and contracts;

(4) All grants, loans or other financial assistance for use in State and Community projects;

(5) Annual State Highway Safety Work Programs;

(6) Construction; leases; purchases; operation of Federal facilities; and

(7) Any other activity, project, or action likely to have a significant effect on the environment.

(c) Continuing actions. This part applies to any action enumerated in paragraph (b) of this section, even though such actions arise from a project or program initiated prior to enactment of the National Environmental Policy Act on January 1, 1970.

(d) Environmental assessments. Within the scope of activities listed in §520.4(b), any person outside the agency submitting a program or project proposal may be requested to prepare an environmental assessment of such proposed action to be included in his submission to the agency.

(e) Exceptions. (1) Assistance in the form of general revenue sharing funds, distributed under the State and Local Fiscal Assistance Act of 1972, 31 U.S.C. 1221, with no control by the NHTSA over the subsequent use of such funds;

(2) Personnel actions;

(3) Administrative procurements (e.g., general supplies) and contracts for personal services;

(4) Legislative proposals originating in another agency and relating to matters not within NHTSA's primary areas of responsibility;

(5) Project amendments (e.g., increases in costs) which have no environmental significance; and

(6) Minor agency actions that are determined by the official responsible for the actions to be of such limited scope that they clearly will not have a significant effect on the quality of the human environment.

(f) Consolidation of statements. Proposed actions (and alternatives thereto) having substantially similar environmental impacts may be covered by a single environmental review and environmental impact statement or negative declaration.

return arrow Back to Top

§520.5   Guidelines for identifying major actions significantly affecting the environment.

(a) General guidelines. The phrase, “major Federal actions significantly affecting the quality of the human environment,” as used in this part, shall be construed with a view to the overall, cumulative impact of the actions, other Federal projects or actions in the area, and any further contemplated or anticipated actions. Therefore, an environmental impact statement should be prepared in any of the following situations:

(1) Proposed actions which are localized in their impact but which have a potential for significantly affecting the environment;

(2) Any proposed action which is likely to be controversial on environmental grounds;

(3) Any proposed action which has unclear but potentially significant environmental consequences.

(b) Specific guidelines. While a precise definition of environmental significance that is valid in all contexts is not possible, any of the following actions should ordinarily be considered as significantly affecting the quality of the human environment:

(1) Any matter falling under section 4(f) of the Department of Transportation Act (49 U.S.C. 1653(f)) and section 138 of Federal-aid highway legislation (23 U.S.C. 138), requiring the use of any publicly owned land from a park, recreation area, or wildlife and waterfowl refuge of national, State, or local significance as determined by the Federal, State, or local officials having jurisdiction thereof, or any land from an historic site of national, State, or local significance;

(2) Any matter falling under section 106 of the National Historic Preservation Act of 1966 (16 U.S.C. 470(f)), requiring consideration of the effect of the proposed action on any building included in the National Register of Historic Preservation and reasonable opportunity for the Advisory Council on Historic Preservation to comment on such action;

(3) Any action that is likely to affect the preservation and enhancement of sites of historical, architectural, or archaeological significance;

(4) Any action that is likely to be highly controversial regarding relocation housing;

(5) Any action that (i) divides or disrupts an established community, disrupts orderly, planned development, or is inconsistent with plans or goals that have been adopted by the community in which the project is located; or (ii) causes significantly increased congestion;

(6) Any action that (i) involves inconsistency with any Federal, State, or local law or administrative determination relating to the environment; (ii) has a significantly detrimental impact on air or water quality or on ambient noise levels for adjoining areas; (iii) involves a possibility of contamination of a public water supply system; or (iv) affects ground water, flooding, erosion, or sedimentation;

(7) Any action that may directly or indirectly result in a significant increase in noise levels, either within a motor vehicle's closed environment or upon nearby areas;

(8) Any action that may directly or indirectly result in a significant increase in the energy or fuel necessary to operate a motor vehicle, including but not limited to the following: (i) Actions which may directly or indirectly result in a significant increase in the weight of a motor vehicle; and (ii) actions which may directly or indirectly result in a significant adverse effect upon the aerodynamic drag of a motor vehicle;

(9) Any action that may directly or indirectly result in a significant increase in the amount of harmful emissions resulting from the operation of a motor vehicle;

(10) Any action that may directly or indirectly result in a significant increase in either the use of or the exposure to toxic or hazardous materials in the manufacture, operation, or disposal of motor vehicles or motor vehicle equipment;

(11) Any action that may directly or indirectly result in a significant increase in the problem of solid waste, as in the disposal of motor vehicles or motor vehicle equipment;

(12) Any action that may directly or indirectly result in a significant depletion of scarce natural resources associated with the manufacture or operation of motor vehicles or motor vehicle equipment; and

(13) Any other action that causes significant environment impact by directly or indirectly affecting human beings through adverse impacts on the environment.

(c) Research activities. (1) In accord-ance with DOT Order 5610.1B, the Assistant Secretary for Systems Development and Technology (TST) will prepare, with the concurrence of the NHTSA, proposed procedures for assessing the environmental consequences of research activities. Until final procedures are promulgated, the following factors are to be considered for periodic evaluation to determine when an environmental statement is required for such programs:

(i) The magnitude of Federal investment in the program;

(ii) The likelihood of widespread application of the technology;

(iii) The degree of environmental impact which would occur if the technology were widely applied; and

(iv) The extent to which continued investment in the new technology is likely to restrict future alternatives.

(2) The statement or environmental review culminating in a negative declaration must be written late enough in the development process to contain meaningful information, but early enough so that this information can practically serve as an input in the decision-making process. Where it is anticipated that an environmental impact statement may ultimately be required but its preparation is still premature, the office shall prepare a publicly available record briefly setting forth the reasons for its determination that a statement is not yet necessary. This record shall be updated at least quarterly, or as may be necessary when significant new information becomes available concerning the potential environmental impact of the program. In any case, a statement or environmental review culminating in a negative declaration must be prepared before research activities have reached a state of investment or commitment to implementation likely to determine subsequent development or restrict later alternatives. Statements on technology research and development programs shall include an analysis not only of alternative forms of the same technology that might reduce any adverse environmental impacts but also of alternative technologies that would serve the same function as the technology under consideration. Efforts shall be made to involve other Federal agencies and interested groups with relevant expertise in the preparation of such statements because the impacts and alternatives to be considered are likely to be less well defined than in other types of statements.

return arrow Back to Top

Subpart B—Procedures

return arrow Back to Top

§520.21   Preparation of environmental reviews, negative declarations, and notices of intent.

(a) General responsibilities—(1) Associate Administrators and Chief Counsel. Each Associate Administrator and the Chief Counsel is responsible for determining, in accordance with Subpart A, whether the projects and activities under his jurisdiction require an environmental review, and for preparing all such reviews, negative declarations, and notices of intent.

(2) Regional Administrators. Each Regional Administrator, in consultation with the Governor's Representative, is responsible for determining, in accordance with Subpart A, whether proposed State activities in his Region, as stated in Annual Work Programs, require an environmental review, and for the preparing all such reviews, negative declarations, and notices of intent.

(3) Associate Administrator for Planning and Evaluation. The Associate Administrator for Planning and Evaluation may request in accordance with the requirements of this order, that the appropriate Associate Administrator or Regional Administrator prepare an Environmental review or Environmental Impact Statement for any proposed or continuing NHTSA action, or comment on any environmental statement prepared by other agencies.

(b) Coordination. Coordination with appropriate local, State and Federal agencies should be accomplished during the early stages by the responsible official to assist in identifying areas of significance and concern. Existing procedures, including those established under the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) Revised Circular A-95, should be used to the greatest extent practicable to accomplish this early coordination.

(c) Applicants. (1) Each applicant for a grant, loan, or other financial assistance for use in State and community projects may be requested to submit, with the original application, an environmental assessment of the proposed project.

(2) Under OMB Revised Circular A-95, “Evaluation, Review, and Coordination of Federal Assistance Programs and Projects,” and DOT 4600.4B, “Evaluation, Review and Coordination of DOT Assistance Programs and Projects,” dated February 27, 1974, a grant applicant must notify the clearinghouse of its intention to apply for Federal program assistance. The notification must solicit comments on the project and its impacts from appropriate State and local agencies. Since it is the NHTSA's policy to assure that (i) interested parties and Federal, State, and local agencies receive early notification of the decision to prepare an environmental impact statement, and (ii) their comments on the environmental effects of the proposed Federal action are solicited at an early stage in the preparation of the draft impact statement, this early notification requirement may be met by a grant applicant by sending the notification to interested parties and agencies at the same time it is sent to the clearinghouse.

(d) Consultants. Consultants may prepare background or preliminary material and assist in preparing a draft or final environmental statement for which the NHTSA takes responsibility. Care should be exercised in selecting consultants, and in reviewing their work, to insure complete and objective consideration of all relevant project impacts and alternatives, particularly if the consultant may expect further contracts based on the outcome of the environmental decision.

(e) Environmental review report. The environmental review shall culminate in a brief written report of the same title, which shall be included in the proposed or ongoing agency action, and which:

(1) Describes the proposed or ongoing NHTSA action, the environment affected, and the anticipated benefits;

(2) Evaluates the potential environmental impact, including those adverse impacts which cannot be avoided, should the proposal be implemented or the action continued;

(3) Assesses the alternatives to the proposed or ongoing action and their potential environmental impact;

(4) Evaluates the cumulative and long-term environmental effects of the proposed or ongoing action;

(5) Describes the irreversible and irretrievable commitments of resources involved in the proposal's implementation or the action's continuance;

(6) Identifies any known or potential conflicts with State, regional, or local plans and programs;

(7) Weighs and analyzes the anticipated benefits against the environmental and other costs of the proposed or ongoing action in a manner which reflects similar comparisons of reasonably available alternatives; and

(8) Concludes with a negative declaration or recommends the preparation of a DEIS.

(f) Negative declarations. (1) If the responsible official judges that the environmental impact of a proposed or ongoing action under his jurisdiction will not significantly affect the quality of the human environment, the following declaration will be included in the environmental review report:

It is the judgment of this agency, based on available information, that no significant environmental impact will result from execution of this action.

(2) A DEIS may be changed to a negative declaration if the public review process indicates that the proposal or ongoing action will not have a significant effect upon the environment.

(3) An index of all negative declarations and a copy of each environmental review report shall be retained by the responsible official under whose jurisdiction it was prepared and shall be made available for public inspection upon request.

(g) Notice of intent to prepare a draft environmental impact statement. If the responsible official under whose jurisdiction an environmental review is prepared determines that the proposed or ongoing action could have a potentially significant effect on the quality of the environment, he shall: coordinate with the Associate Administrator for Planning and Evaluation and the Chief Counsel, transmit to appropriate Federal, State and local agencies and have published in the Federal Register a notice of intent to prepare an environmental statement as soon as is practicable after the determination to prepare such a statement.

return arrow Back to Top

§520.22   Maintenance of a list of actions.

(a) The Associate Administrator for Planning and Evaluation shall be responsible for the preparation and maintenance of a list of actions for which draft or final environmental impact statements have been or are to be prepared. This list shall be on file with the Associate Administrator for Planning and Evaluation and shall be available for public inspection in the Docket Section upon request. A copy of the initial list and its updatings at the end of each calendar quarter shall be transmitted by the Associate Administrator for Planning and Evaluation to TES and CEQ.

(b) If a determination is made that an environmental statement is not necessary for a proposed action (1) which has been identified as normally requiring preparation of a statement, (2) which is similar to actions for which a significant number of statements have been prepared, (3) which the agency has previously announced would be the subject of a statement, or (4) for which the official responsible for such proposal has made a negative determination in response to a request from the CEQ, a record briefly setting forth the decision and the reasons for that determination shall be prepared by the responsible official. Such a record of negative determinations and any evaluations made pursuant to §520.21 which conclude that preparation of a statement is not yet timely shall be prepared by the responsible official, submitted to the Associate Administrator for Planning and Evaluation, and made available by the Associate Administrator for Planning and Evaluation in the same manner as provided in paragraph (a) of this section for lists of statements under preparation.

return arrow Back to Top

§520.23   Preparation of draft environmental impact statements.

(a) Planning stage. (1) When a DEIS is to be prepared, the responsible official shall promptly initiate its preparation and develop a schedule in consultation with the Associate Administrator for Planning and Evaluation, to assure completion prior to the first significant point of decision in the program or project development process.

(2) The environmental impacts of proposed activities should be initially assessed concurrently with the initial technical and economic studies.

(3) Section 102(2)(A) of NEPA requires each Federal agency to utilize a “systematic, interdisciplinary approach” to plans and programs affecting the environment. To assure that all environmental impacts are identified and assessed, all relevant disciplines should be represented. If the necessary disciplines are not represented on the staff of the applicant or NHTSA, it is appropriate to use professional services available in other Federal, State or local agencies, universities, or consulting firms. The use of the interdisciplinary approach should not be limited to the environmental statement. This approach should also be used in the early planning stages to help assure a systematic evaluation of reasonable alternative courses of action and their potential social, economic, and environmental consequences.

(b) Form and content requirements. Attachment 1 of this order prescribes the form and content requirements to be followed for each draft and final environmental impact statement. The DEIS must fulfill and satisfy, to the fullest extent possible at the time it is prepared, the requirements established for final statements.

(c) Lead agency. CEQ guidelines provide that when more than one Federal agency (1) directly sponsors an action, or is directly involved in an action through funding, licenses, or permits, or (2) is involved in a group of actions directly related to each other because of their functional interdependence and geographical proximity, consideration should be given to preparing one statement for all the Federal actions involved. Agencies in such cases should consider the designation of a single “lead agency” to assume supervisory responsibility for preparation of a joint statement. Where a lead agency prepares the statement, the other agencies involved should provide assistance with respect to their areas of jurisdiction and expertise. The statement should contain an evaluation of the full range of Federal actions involved, should reflect the views of all participating agencies, and should be prepared before major or irreversible actions have been taken by any of the participating agencies. Some relevant factors in determining an appropriate lead agency are: The time sequence in which the agencies become involved, the magnitude of their respective involvement, and their relative expertise with respect to the project's environmental effects. Questions concerning “lead agency” decisions should be raised with CEQ through TES. For projects serving and primarily involving land owned by or under the jurisdiction of another Federal agency, that agency may be the appropriate lead agency.

(d) Applicants. Where the agency requests an applicant for financial assistance or other agency approval to submit an environmental assessment, the responsible official will (1) assist the applicant by outlining the information required, and (2) in all cases make his own evaluation of the environmental issues involved and take responsibility for the scope and content of draft and final environmental statements.

return arrow Back to Top

§520.24   Internal processing of draft environmental impact statements.

Before circulating a DEIS for external review, the official responsible for the DEIS shall receive the concurrence of the Associate Administrator for Planning and Evaluation and the Chief Counsel; and prepare a memorandum for approval by the Administrator which shall:

(a) Set forth the basis on which it was determined that a potentially significant environmental effect exists;

(b) Attach the DEIS;

(c) Identify the Federal, State, and local agencies and private sources from which comments on the DEIS are proposed to be solicited (see Attachment 2);1 and

1Filed as part of the original document.

(d) Include a recommendation on whether a public hearing on the proposed action should be held.

return arrow Back to Top

§520.25   External review of draft environmental impact statements.

(a) Requirements. The official responsible for the DEIS shall:

(1) Transmit 5 copies of the DEIS to the CEQ and 2 copies to TES;

(2) Solicit comments from all Federal, State, and local agencies which have jurisdiction by law or special expertise with respect to the possible environmental impact involved, and from the public (see Attachment 2); and

(3) Inform the public and interested parties of the availability of the DEIS and provide copies as appropriate; and

(4) Allow a comment period of not less than 45 days from the Friday of the week following receipt of the draft impact statement by CEQ. Requests for extensions shall be granted whenever possible, and particularly when warranted by the magnitude and complexity of the statement or the extent of citizen interest.

(b) Procedures—(1) Federal and Federal-State agency review. (i) The DEIS shall be circulated for review to the Federal and Federal-State agencies with special expertise or jurisdiction by law with regard to the potential environmental impact involved. These agencies and their relevant areas of expertise are identified in Attachment 2.

(ii) For actions within the jurisdiction of the Environmental Protection Agency (air or water quality, solid wastes, pesticides, radiation standards, noise), the DEIS shall be sent to EPA.

(iii) For actions which would affect any property that is included in the National Register of Historic Preservation, the DEIS should be sent to the Advisory Council on Historic Preservation and the State Liaison Office for Historic Preservation.

(2) State and local review. Where a review of the proposed action by State and local agencies authorized to develop and enforce environmental stand-ards is relevant, comments are to be solicited directly from such agencies with known responsibilities in environmental matters, and shall be obtained as follows:

(i) Where review of direct Federal development projects, and of projects assisted under programs listed in Attachment D to revised OMB Circular A-95 (as implemented by DOT 4600.4B “Evaluation, Review and Coordination of DOT Assistance Programs and Projects”, dated February 27, 1974), takes place prior to preparation of an environmental statement, comments of the reviewing agencies on the environmental effects of the proposed project are inputs to the environmental statement. These comments shall be attached to the draft statement when it is circulated for review and copies of the draft shall be sent to those who commented. A-05 clearinghouses or other agencies designated by the Governor may also secure comments on environmental statements. In all cases, copies of the draft environmental statements shall be sent to clearinghouses and to the applicant whose project is the subject of the statement.

(ii) Comments shall be directly obtained from appropriate State and local agencies, except where review is secured by agreement through A-95 clearinghouses, unless the Governor of the appropriate State has designated some other point for obtaining his review. Instructions for obtaining the views of such agencies are contained in the joint OMB-CEQ memorandum (see Attachment 4). Comments shall be solicited from municipalities and counties on all projects located therein.

(iii) State and local review of NHTSA procedures, regulations, and policies for administering Federal programs of assistance to State and local governments shall be obtained pursuant to procedures established by OMB Circular No. A-85.

(iv) Generally, environmental statements on legislative and budget proposals may be excluded from State and local review.

(3) General public review. (i) At the time the DEIS is circulated to Federal, State, and local agencies, public availability of the DEIS for comment and review will be announced by the CEQ in the Federal Register. Copies of the DEIS should be sent to known interested parties, and press releases should be sent to local news media advising where the DEIS is available and how copies may be obtained. The Office of Public Affairs and Consumer Services shall maintain a list of groups, including conservation organizations and motor vehicle manufacturers, known to be interested in the agency's activities, and directly notify such groups of the availability of the DEIS or send them a copy as soon as it has been prepared.

(ii) A DEIS should be available to the public at least 30 days prior to the time of a public hearing on the DEIS.

(iii) Copies of the DEIS will be made available at the NHTSA Docket Section, Room 5109, 400 Seventh Street, SW., Washington, DC 20590, and, where appropriate, NHTSA Regional Offices, at the offices of any applicants or grantees, at appropriate State, regional, and metropolitan clearing houses, and local public libraries, and furnished to public and private organizations and individuals with special expertise with respect to the potential environmental impact involved, and to those with an interest in the action who request an opportunity to comment. Copies to be made available to the public shall be provided without charge to the extent practicable, or at a fee which is not more than the actual cost of reproducing copies required to be sent to other Federal agencies, including the CEQ.

(iv) A copy of the DEIS should in all cases be sent to any applicant whose project is the subject of the statement.

(v) If a DEIS is changed to a negative declaration as a result of the public review process, all agencies and individuals that received copies and/or commented on the DEIS must be informed that a negative declaration was substituted for the DEIS and given a brief explanation of the reason for such substitution.

(c) Utilization of comments. Comments received on the draft statement, and inputs (in summary form, if appropriate) from the processes for citizen participation, shall accompany the environmental statement through the normal internal project or program review process.

return arrow Back to Top

§520.26   Public hearings.

(a) A public hearing on a proposed or ongoing action covered by a DEIS shall be held upon the determination by the official responsible for such action, in consultation with the Associate Administrator for Planning and Evaluation, that a public hearing would be appropriate and in the public interest. In deciding whether a public hearing is appropriate, the responsible official should consider:

(1) The magnitude of the proposal in terms of economic costs, the geographic area involved, and the uniqueness or size of the commitment of the resources involved;

(2) The degree of interest in the proposal, as evidenced by requests from the public and from Federal, State, and local authorities that a hearing be held;

(3) The likelihood that information will be presented at the hearing which will be of assistance to the agency in fulfilling its responsibilities under the NEPA;

(4) The extent to which public involvement already has been achieved through other means, such as earlier public hearings, meetings with citizen representatives, and/or written comments on the proposed action; and

(5) The extent of potential environmental impact.

(b) If it is determined that a public hearing is to be held in accordance with paragraph (a) of this section, the official responsible for the action shall both announce the hearing through newspaper articles, direct notification to interested parties, and clearinghouses, and cause a notice to be issued in the Federal Register at least 30 days prior to the time of such hearing:

(1) Identifying the subject matter of the hearing;

(2) Announcing the date, time, and place of the hearing and the procedures to be followed; and

(3) Announcing the availability of the DEIS and any other information, as appropriate, for public inspection at one or more locations in the area affected by the action.

return arrow Back to Top

§520.27   Legislative actions.

(a) A DEIS on both legislative proposals and reports for which NHTSA either develops the Departmental position or originates the legislation will be cleared with TES, filed with CEQ, and submitted to the Office of Management and Budget through the normal DOT and NHTSA legislative process.

(b) The preparation, circulation, and filing of the environmental statement shall be in accordance with OMB Bulletin 72-6, “Proposed Federal Actions Affecting the Environment.”

(c) A DEIS and any comments that have been received should be available to the Congress and to the public for consideration in connection with the proposed legislation or report on proposed legislation. In cases where the scheduling of Congressional hearings on recommendations or reports on proposals for legislation which the Department has forwarded to the Congress does not allow adequate time for the completion of a FEIS, a DEIS may be furnished to the Congress and made available to the public pending transmittal of the comments as received and the final text.

return arrow Back to Top

§520.28   Preparation of final environmental impact statements.

(a) If the action is to go forward and the DEIS has not been changed to a negative declaration, as soon as practicable after the expiration of the comment period and hearing process, if any, the official responsible for the action shall prepare a final environmental impact statement (FEIS), taking into account all comments received and issues raised during such period and process.

(b) The FEIS shall conform to the guidelines for form and content in Attachment 1.

(c) The FEIS shall then be submitted to the Chief Counsel by the official responsible for the action, for determination of legal sufficiency.

return arrow Back to Top

§520.29   Internal review of final environmental impact statements.

(a) Upon completion of the review for legal sufficiency of the FEIS, the Chief Counsel shall transmit 2 copies of the FEIS to TES for concurrence. Unless other notification is provided within 2 weeks after receipt in TES, the statement will be considered concurred in by TES.

(b) After concurrence by TES, the FEIS will be transmitted by the Chief Counsel to the Administrator for approval.

(c) If an action requires the personal approval of the Secretary or Deputy Secretary pursuant to a request by them or by TES, TGC, or the NHTSA office originating the action, the final environmental statement shall be accompanied by a brief cover memorandum requesting the Secretary's or Deputy Secretary's approval of the action.

(1) The memorandum shall have signature lines for the concurrence of the Assistant Secretary for Environment, Safety, and Consumer Affairs, the General Counsel, and the Deputy Secretary, and for the approval of the Secretary or Deputy Secretary.

(2) TES, in conjunction with the Executive Secretary, is responsible for informing the Assistant Secretary for Congressional and Intergovernmental Affairs and the Office of Public Affairs of the Secretary's decisions so that they, in coordination with the operating administrations or other Secretarial Offices involved, may take the appropriate actions.

return arrow Back to Top

§520.30   Availability of final environmental impact statements.

(a) Pending final approval and filing with CEQ, a proposed FEIS may be made available to the public and Federal, State, or local agencies if it carries a notation that it is not approved and filed.

(b) After approval by the Administrator, the Associate Administrator for Planning and Evaluation will send 5 copies of the FEIS (together with comments) to the CEQ; individual copies with comments attached to the EPA and all Federal, State, and local agencies and members of the public who submitted comments on the DEIS or requested copies of the FEIS. If the length of the statement or the number of comments make this distribution requirement highly impractical, TES should be consulted to consider an alternative arrangement.

(c) Copies of the FEIS will be made available in the NHTSA Docket Section, Room 5109, 400 Seventh Street SW., Washington, DC 20590, and, where appropriate, NHTSA Regional Offices, at the offices of any applicants or grantees, and at appropriate State, regional, and metropolitan clearinghouses and, where the impact is localized, public libraries.

(d) The official responsible for the action shall, upon request, make available copies of the FEIS and substantive comments received on the DEIS without charge to the extent practicable, or at a fee which is not more than the actual cost of reproducing copies.

(Authority: Secs. 102(a)(A), 102(2)(C), Pub. L. 91-190, 83 Stat. 853 (42 U.S.C. 4332); secs. 2(b), 4(f), Pub. L. 89-670, 80 Stat. 931 (49 U.S.C. 1651(b), 1653(f); E. O. 11514, 35 FR 4247; 40 CFR Part 1500; DOT Order 5610.1B, 39 FR 35234; delegations of authority at 49 CFR 1.45, 1.50 and 501.7)

[40 FR 52396, Nov. 10, 1975, as amended at 48 FR 44081, Sept. 27, 1983]

return arrow Back to Top

§520.31   Amendments or supplements.

A draft or final environmental impact statement may be amended or supplemented. Supplements or amendments should be considered when substantial changes are made in the proposed or ongoing action that will introduce a new or changed environmental effect of significance to the quality of the environment, or significant new information becomes available concerning its environmental aspects. In such cases, the supplement or amendment shall be processed in consultation with TES with respect to the need for, or desirability of, recirculating the statement for the appropriate period. TES concurrence must be secured before issuance.

return arrow Back to Top

§520.32   Emergency action procedures.

The CEQ Guidelines allow modification of requirements in case of a national emergency, a disaster or similar great urgency. The processing times may be reduced, or if the emergency situation warrants, preparation and processing of a DEIS, FEIS, or negative declaration may be abbreviated. Such procedural changes, however, should be requested only for those projects where the need for immediate action requires processing in other than the normal manner.

return arrow Back to Top

§520.33   Timing of proposed NHTSA actions.

To the maximum extent practicable, no administrative action (i.e., any proposed action to be taken by the agency other than agency proposals for legislation to Congress, budget proposals, or agency reports on legislation) subject to this part and covered by an environmental impact statement shall be taken sooner than 90 days after a DEIS has been circulated for comment, furnished to the CEQ, and made public. Neither shall such administrative action be taken sooner than 30 days after the FEIS (together with comments) has been filed with CEQ, and made available to commenting agencies and the public. If the FEIS is filed within 90 days after a DEIS has been circulated for comment, furnished to the CEQ and made public, the 30-day period and 90-day period may run concurrently to the extent that they overlap. The 90-day time period is measured from the date of publication in the Federal Register of the list of weekly filings of environmental impact statements with the CEQ, but the 30-day period is computed from the date of receipt by the CEQ.

return arrow Back to Top

§520.34   Comments on environmental statements prepared by other agencies.

(a) All requests for NHTSA's views on a DEIS or a proposed action undergoing environmental review by another agency will be transmitted to the Associate Administrator for Planning and Evaluation for action or referral to TES where appropriate. Offices within NHTSA may be requested by the Associate Administrator for Planning and Evaluation to supply any pertinent information and comments for a coordinated agency response.

(b) NHTSA's comments and the comments of any offices responding to a request by the Associate Administrator for Planning and Evaluation should be organized in a manner consistent with the structure of an environmental review set out in §520.21(e). NHTSA programs that are environmentally related to the proposed action under review should be identified so interrelationships may receive due consideration.

(c) Copies of NHTSA's comments on environmental statements prepared by other agencies shall be distributed as follows:

(1) The original and 1 copy to the requesting agency;

(2) 1 copy to TES-70; and

(3) 5 copies to CEQ.

(d) Requests by the public for copies should be referred to the agency originating the statement.

return arrow Back to Top

Attachment 1 to Part 520—Form and Content of Statement

1. Form. a. Each statement will be headed as follows:

department of transportation national highway traffic safety administration

(Draft) Environmental Impact Statement Pursuant to section 102(2)(C), Pub. L. 91-190; 83 Stat. 853; 42 U.S.C. 4332(2)(C).

b. The heading specified above shall be modified to indicate that the statement also covers sections 4(f) of the DOT Act or 106 of the National Historic Preservation Act, when appropriate.

c. Each statement will, as a minimum, contain sections corresponding to paragraph 3 herein, supplemented as necessary to cover other matters provided in this Attachment.

d. The format for the summary to accompany draft and final environmental statements is as follows:

summary

(Check one) (   ) Draft (   ) Final; Department of Transportation, National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. Name, address, and telephone number of individual who can be contacted for additional information about the proposed action or the statement. (Note: DOT Order 2100.2 prescribes procedures for reporting public contacts in rulemaking.)

(1) Name of Action. (Check one) (   ) Administrative Action. (   ) Legislative Action.

(2) Brief description of action indicating what States (and counties) are particularly affected.

(3) Summary of environmental impact and adverse environmental effects.

(4) List alternatives considered.

(5)(a) (For draft statements) List all Federal, State, and local agencies from which comments have been requested.

(b) (For final statements) List all Federal, State, and local agencies and other sources from which written comments have been received.

(6) Dates the draft statement and the final statement if issued were made available to the Council on Environmental Quality and the public.

2. Guidance as to content of statement. The following paragraphs of this Attachment are intended to be considered, where relevant, as guidance regarding the content of environmental statements. This guidance is expected to be supplemented by research reports, guidance on methodology, and other material from the literature as may be pertinent to evaluation of relevant environmental factors.

3. General content. The following points are to be covered:

a. A description of the proposed Federal action (e.g., “The proposed Federal action is approval of a grant application to construct * * *”), a statement of its purpose, and a description of the environment affected, including information, summary technical data, and maps and diagrams where relevant, adequate to permit an assessment of potential environmental impact by commenting offices and the public.

(1) Highly technical and specialized analyses and data should generally be avoided in the body of the draft impact statement. Such materials should be appropriately summarized in the body of the environmental statement and attached as appendices or footnoted with adequate bibliographic references.

(2) The statement should succinctly describe the environment of the area affected as it exists prior to a proposed action, including other related Federal activities in the area, their interrelationships, and cumulative environmental impact. The amount of detail provided in such descriptions should be commensurate with the extent and expected impact of the action, and with the amount of information required at the particular level of decision making (planning, feasibility, design, etc.). In order to insure accurate descriptions and environmental considerations, site visits should be made where appropriate.

(3) The statement should identify, as appropriate, population and growth characteristics of the affected area and any population and growth assumptions used to justify the project or program or to determine secondary population and growth impacts resulting from the proposed action and its alternatives (see paragraph 3c(2)). In discussing these population aspects, the statement should give consideration to using the rates of growth in the region of the project contained in the projection compiled for the Water Resources Council by the Bureau of Economic Analysis of the Department of Commerce and the Economic Research Service of the Department of Agriculture (the OBERS projection).

(4) The sources of data used to identify, quantify, or evaluate any or all environmental consequences must be expressly noted.

b. The relationship of the proposed action and how it may conform to or conflict with adopted or proposed land use plans, policies, controls, and goals and objectives as have been promulgated by affected communities. Where a conflict or inconsistency exists, the statement should describe the extent of reconciliation and the reasons for proceeding notwithstanding the absence of full reconciliation.

c. The probable impact of the proposed action on the environment. (1) This requires assessment of the positive and negative effects of the proposed action is it affects both national and international human environment. The attention given to different environmental factors will vary according to the nature, scale, and location of proposed actions. Among factors to be considered should be the potential effect of the action on such aspects of the environment as those listed in Attachment 2, and in section 520.5(b), supra. Primary attention should be given in the statement to discussing those factors most evidently impacted by the proposed action.

(2) Secondary and other foreseeable effects, as well as primary consequences for the environment, should be included in the analyses. Secondary effects, such as the impact on fuel consumption, emissions, or noise levels of automobiles or in the use of toxic or scarce materials, may be more substantial than the primary effects of the original action.

d. Alternatives to the proposed action, including, where relevant, those not within the existing authority of the responsible preparing office. Section 102(2)(D) of NEPA requires the responsible agency to “study, develop, and describe appropriate alternatives to recommended courses of action in any proposal which involves unresolved conflicts concerning alternative uses of available resources.” A rigorous exploration and an objective evaluation of the environmental impacts of all reasonable alternative actions, particularly those that might enhance environmental quality or avoid some or all of the adverse environmental effects, are essential. Sufficient analysis of such alternatives and their environmental benefits, costs, and risks should accompany the proposed action through the review process in order not to foreclose prematurely options which might enhance environmental quality or have less detrimental effects. Examples of such alternatives include: The alternatives of not taking any action or of postponing action pending further study; alternatives requiring actions of a significantly different nature which would provide similar benefits with different environmental impacts, e.g., low capital intensive improvements, mass transit alternatives to highway construction; alternatives related to different locations or designs or details of the proposed action which would present different environmental impacts. In each case, the analysis should be sufficiently detailed to reveal comparative evaluation of the environmental benefits, costs, and risks of the proposed action and each reasonable alternative. Where an existing impact statement already contains such an analysis its treatment of alternatives may be incorporated, provided such treatment is current and relevant to the precise purpose of the proposed action.

e. Any probable adverse environmental effacts which cannot be avoided (such as water or air pollution, noise, undesirable land use patterns, or impacts on public parks and recreation areas, wildlife and waterfowl refuges, or on historic sites, damage to life systems, traffic congestion, threats to health, or other consequences adverse to the environmental goals set out in section 101(b) of NEPA). This should be a brief section summarizing in one place those effects discussed in paragraph 3c that are adverse and unavoidable under the proposed action. Included for purposes of contrast should be a clear statement of how all adverse effects will be mitigated. Where mitigating steps are included in the statement, the responsible official shall see that they are carried out.

f. The relationship between local short-term uses of man's environment and the maintenance and enhancement of long-term productivity. This section should contain a brief discussion of the extent to which the proposed action involves tradeoffs between short-term environmental gains at the expense of long-term losses, or vice versa, and a discussion of the extent to which the proposed action forecloses future options.

g. Any irreversible and irretrievable commitments of resources that would be involved in the proposed action should it be implemented. This requires identification of unavoidable impacts and the extent to which the action irreversibly curtails the range of potential uses of the environment. “Resources” means not only the labor and materials devoted to an action but also the natural and cultural resources lost or destroyed.

h. An indication of what other interests and considerations of Federal policy are thought to offset the adverse environmental effects of the proposed action identified pursuant to subparagraphs (c) and (e) of this paragraph. The statement should also indicate the extent to which these stated countervailing benefits could be realized by following reasonable alternatives to the proposed action (as identified in subparagraph (d) of this paragraph) that would avoid some or all of the adverse environmental effects. In this connection if a cost-benefit analysis of the proposed action has been prepared, it, or a summary, should be attached to the environmental impact statement, and should clearly indicate the extent to which environmental costs have not been reflected in such analysis.

i. A discussion of problems and objections raised by other Federal agencies, State and local entities, and citizens in the review process, and the disposition of the issues involved and the reasons therefor. (This section shall be added to the final environmental statement at the end of the review process.)

(1) The draft and final statements should document issues raised through consultations with Federal, State, and local agencies with jurisdiction or special expertise and with citizens, of actions taken in response to comments, public hearings, and other citizens involvement proceedings.

(2) Any unresolved environmental issues and efforts to resolve them, through further consultations or otherwise, should be identified in the final statement. For instance, where an agency comments that the statement has inadequate analysis or that the agency has reservations concerning the impacts, or believes that the impacts are too adverse for approval, either the issue should be resolved or the final statement should reflect efforts to resolve the issue and set forth any action that will result.

(3) The statement should reflect that every effort was made to discover and discuss all major points of view on the environmental effects of the proposed action and alternatives in the draft statement. However, where opposing professional views and responsible opinion have been overlooked in the draft statement and are raised through the commenting process, the environmental effects of the action should be reviewed in light of those views. A meaningful reference should be made in the final statement to the existence of any responsible opposing view not adequately discussed in the draft statement indicating responses to the issues raised.

(4) All substantive comments received on the draft (or summaries of responses from the public which have been exceptionally voluminous) should be attached to the final statement, whether or not each such comment is thought to merit individual discussion in the text of the statement.

j. Draft statement should indicate at appropriate points in the text any underlying studies, reports, and other information obtained and considered in preparing the statement, including any cost-benefit analyses prepared. In the case of documents not likely to be easily accessible (such as internal studies or reports), the statement should indicate how such information may be obtained. If such information is attached to the statement, care should be taken to insure that the statement remains an essentially self-contained instrument, capable of being understood by the reader without the need for undue cross reference.

4. Publicly owned parklands, recreational areas, wildlife and waterfowl refuges and historic sites. The following points are to be covered:

a. Description of “any publicly owned land from a public park, recreational area or wildlife and waterfowl refuge” or “any land from an historic site” affected or taken by the project. This includes its size, available activities, use, patronage, unique or irreplaceable qualities, relationship to other similarly used lands in the vicinity of the project, maps, plans, slides, photographs, and drawings showing a sufficient scale and detail the project. This also includes its impact on park, recreation, wildlife, or historic areas, and changes in vehicular or pedestrian access.

b. Statement of the “national, State or local significance” of the entire park, recreational area, refuge, or historic site “as determined by the Federal, State or local officials having jurisdiction thereof.”

(1) In the absence of such a statement lands will be presumed to be significant. Any statement of “insignificance” by the official having jurisdiction is subject to review by the Department as to whether such statement is capricious.

(2) Where Federal lands are administered for multiple uses, the Federal official having jurisdiction over the lands shall determine whether the subject lands are in fact being used for park, recreation, wildlife, waterfowl, or historic purposes.

c. Similar data, as appropriate, for alternative designs and locations, including detailed cost estimates (with figures showing percentage differences in total project costs) and technical feasibility, and appropriate analysis of the alternatives, including any unique problems present and evidence that the cost or community disruptions resulting from alternative routes reach extraordinary magnitudes. This portion of the statement should demonstrate compliance with the Supreme Court's statement in the Overton Park case, as follows:

[The] very existence of the statute indicates that protection of parkland was to be given paramount importance. The few green havens that are public parks were not to be lost unless there were truly unusual factors present in a particular case or the cost or community disruption resulting from alternative routes reached extraordinary magnitudes. If the statutes are to have any meaning, the Secretary cannot approve the destruction of parkland unless he finds that alternative routes present unique problems. 401 U.S. 402, 412 (1971).

d. If there is no feasible and prudent alternative, description of all planning undertaken to minimize harm to the protected area and statement of actions taken or to be taken to implement this planning, including measures to maintain or enhance the natural beauty of the lands traversed.

(1) Measures to minimize harm may include replacement of land and facilities, providing land or facilities, provision for functional replacement of the facility (see 49 CFR 25.267).

(2) Design measures to minimize harm; e.g., tunneling, cut and cover, cut and fill, treatment of embankments, planting, screening, maintenance of pedestrian or bicycle paths and noise mitigation measures all reflecting utilization of appropriate interdisciplinary design personnel.

e. Evidence of concurrence or description of efforts to obtain concurrence of Federal, State or local officials having jurisdiction over the section 4(f) property regarding the action proposed and the measures planned to minimize harm.

f. If Federally-owned properties are involved in highway projects, the final statement shall include the action taken or an indication of the expected action after filing a map of the proposed use of the land or other appropriate documentation with the Secretary of the Department supervising the land (23 U.S.C. 317).

g. If land acquired with Federal grant money (Department of Housing and Urban Development open space or Bureau of Outdoor Recreation land and water conservation funds) is involved, the final statement shall include appropriate communications with the grantor agency.

h. TGC will determine application of section 4(f) to public interests in lands, such as easements, reversions, etc.

i. A specific finding by the Administrator that there is no feasible and prudent alternative and that the proposal includes all possible planning to minimize harm to the “4(f) area” involved.

5. Properties and sites of historic and cultural significance. The statement should document actions taken to preserve and enhance districts, sites, buildings, structures, and objects of historical, architectural, archeological, or cultural significance affected by the action.

a. Draft environmental statements should include identification, through consulting the National Register and applying the National Register Criteria (36 CFR part 800), of properties that are included in or eligible for inclusion in the National Register of Historic Places that may be affected by the project. The National Register is published in its entirety each February in the Federal Register. Monthly additions and listings of eligible properties are published in the Federal Register the first Tuesday of each month. The Secretary of the Interior will advise, upon request, whether properties are eligible for the National Register.

b. If application of the Advisory Council on Historic Preservation's (ACHP) Criteria of Effect (36 CFR part 800) indicates that the project will have an effect upon a property included in or eligible for inclusion in the National Register of Historic Places, the draft environmental statement should document the effect. Evaluation of the effect should be made in consultation with the State Historic Preservation Officer (SHPO) and in accordance with the ACHP's criteria of Adverse Effect (36 CFR part 800).

c. Determinations of no adverse effect should be documented in the draft statement with evidence of the application of the ACHP's Criteria of Adverse Effect, the views of the appropriate State Historic Preservation Officer, and submission of the determination to the ACHP for review.

d. If the project will have an adverse effect upon a property included in or eligible for inclusion in the National Register of Historic Places, the final environmental statement should include either an executed Memorandum of Agreement or comments from the Council after consideration of the project at a meeting of the ACHP and an account of actions to be taken in response to the comments of the ACHP. Procedures for obtaining a Memorandum of Agreement and the comments of the Council are found in 36 CFR part 800.

e. To determine whether the project will have an effect on properties of State or local historical, architectural, archaeological, or cultural significance not included in or eligible for inclusion in the National Register, the responsible official should consult with the State Historic Preservation Officer, with the local official having jurisdiction of the property, and where appropriate, with historical societies, museums, or academic institutions having expertise with regard to the property. Use of land from historic properties of Federal, State and local significance as determined by the official having jurisdiction thereof involves section 4(f) of the DOT Act and documentation should include information necessary to consider a 4(f) determination (see paragraph 4).

6. Impacts of the proposed action on the human environment involving community disruption and relocation. a. The statement should include a description of probable impact sufficient to enable an understanding of the extent of the environmental and social impact of the project alternatives and to consider whether relocation problems can be properly handled. This would include the following information obtainable by visual inspection of the proposed affected area and from secondary sources and community sources when available.

(1) An estimate of the households to be displaced including the family characteristics (e.g., minorities, and income levels, tenure, the elderly, large families).

(2) Impact on the human environment of an action which divides or disrupts an established community, including where pertinent, the effect of displacement on types of families and individuals affected, effect of streets cut off, separation of residences from community facilities, separation of residential areas.

(3) Impact on the neighborhood and housing to which relocation is likely to take place (e.g., lack of sufficient housing for large families, doublings up).

(4) An estimate of the businesses to be displaced, and the general effect of business dislocation on the economy of the community.

(5) A discussion of relocation housing in the area and the ability to provide adequate relocation housing for the types of families to be displaced. If the resources are insufficient to meet the estimated displacement needs, a description of the actions proposed to remedy this situation including, if necessary, use of housing of last resort.

(6) Results of consultation with local officials and community groups regarding the impacts to the community affected. Relocation agencies and staff and other social agencies can help to describe probable social impacts of this proposed action.

(7) Where necessary, special relocation advisory services to be provided the elderly, handicapped and illiterate regarding interpretations of benefits, assistance in selecting replacement housing and consultation with respect to acquiring, leasing, and occupying replacement housing.

b. This data should provide the preliminary basis for assurance of the availability of relocation housing as required by DOT 5620.1, Replacement Housing Policy, dated June 24, 1970, and 49 CFR 25.53.

7. Considerations relating to pedestrians and bicyclists. Where appropriate, the statement should discuss impacts on and consideration to be given in the development of the project to pedestrian and bicycle access, movement and safety within the affected area, particularly in medium and high density commercial and residential areas.

8. Other social impacts. The general social groups specially benefitted or harmed by the proposed action should be identified in the statement including the following:

a. Particular effects of a proposal on the elderly, handicapped, non-drivers, transit dependent, or minorities should be described to the extent reasonably predictable.

b. How the proposal will facilitate or inhibit their access to jobs, educational facilities, religious institutions, health and welfare services, recreational facilities, social and cultural facilities, pedestrian movement facilities, and public transit services.

9. Standards as to noise, air, and water pollution. The statement shall reflect sufficient analysis of the effects of the proposed action on attainment and maintenance of any environmental standards established by law or administrative determination (e.g., noise, ambient air quality, water quality) including the following documentation:

a. With respect to water quality, there should be consultation with the agency responsible for the State water pollution control program as to conformity with standards and regulations regarding storm sewer discharge sedimentation control, and other non-point source discharges.

b. The comments or determinations of the offices charged with administration of the State's implementation plan for air quality as to the consistency of the project with State plans for the implementation of ambient air quality standards.

c. Conformity to adopted noise standards, compatible, if appropriate, with different land uses.

10. Energy supply and natural resources development. Where applicable, the statement should reflect consideration of whether the project or program will have any effect on either the production or consumption of energy and other natural resources, and discuss such effects if they are significant.

11. Flood hazard evaluation. When an alternative under consideration encroaches on a flood plain, the statement should include evidence that studies have been made and evidence of consultations with agencies with expertise have been carried out. Necessary measures to handle flood hazard problems should be described. In compliance with Executive Order 11296, and Flood Hazard Guidelines for Federal Executive Agencies, promulgated by the Water Resources Council, or how such requirements can be met during project development.

12. Considerations relating to wetlands or coastal zones. Where wetlands or coastal zones are involved, the statement should include:

a. Information on location, types, and extent of wetlands areas which might be affected by the proposed action.

b. An assessment of the impacts resulting from both construction and operation of the project on the wetlands and associated wildlife, and measures to minimize adverse impacts.

c. A statement by the local representative of the Department of the Interior, and any other responsible officials with special expertise, setting forth his views on the impacts of the project on the wetlands, the worth of the particular wetlands areas involved to the community and to the Nation, and recommendations as to whether the proposed action should proceed, and, if applicable, along what alternative route.

d. Where applicable, a discussion of how the proposed project relates to the State coastal zone management program for the particular State in which the project is to take place.

13. Construction impacts. In general, adverse impacts during construction will be of less importance than long-term impacts of a proposal. Nonetheless, statements should appropriately address such matters as the following identifying any special problem areas:

a. Noise impacts from construction and any specifications setting maximum noise levels.

b. Disposal of spoil and effect on borrow areas and disposal sites (include specifications where special problems are involved).

c. Measures to minimize effects on traffic and pedestrians.

14. Land use and urban growth. The statement should include, to the extent relevant and predictable:

a. The effect of the project on land use, development patterns, and urban growth.

b. Where significant land use and development impacts are anticipated, identify public facilities needed to serve the new development and any problems or issues which would arise in connection with these facilities, and the comments of agencies that would provide these facilities.

return arrow Back to Top

Attachment 2 to Part 520—Areas of Environmental Impact and Federal Agencies and Federal-State Agencies With Jurisdiction by Law or Special Expertise To Comment Thereon

Editorial Note: Filed as part of the original document. For text see 39 FR 32546, Sept. 30, 1975.

return arrow Back to Top

Attachment 3 to Part 520—Offices Within Federal Agencies and Federal-State Agencies for Information Regarding the Agencies' Impact Statements for Which Comments Are Requested

Editorial Note: Filed as part of the original document. For text see 39 FR 35248, Sept. 30, 1975.

return arrow Back to Top

Attachment 4 to Part 520—State and Local Agency Review of Impact Statements

1. OBM Revised Circular No. A-95 through its system of clearinghouses provides a means for securing the views of State and local environmental agencies, which can assist in the preparation of impact statements. Under A-95, review of the proposed project in the case of federally assisted projects (Part I of A-95) generally takes place prior to the preparation of the impact statement. Therefore, comments on the environmental effects of the proposed project that are secured during this stage of the A-95 process represent inputs to the environmental impact statement.

2. In the case of direct Federal development (Part II of A-95), Federal agencies are required to consult with clearinghouses at the earliest practicable time in the planning of the project or activity. Where such consultation occurs prior to completion of the draft impact statement, comments relating to the environmental effects of the proposed action would also represent inputs to the environmental impact statement.

3. In either case, whatever comments are made on environmental effects of proposed Federal or federally assisted projects by clearinghouses, or by State and local environmental agencies through clearinghouses, in the course of the A-95 review should be attached to the draft impact statement when it is circulated for review. Copies of the statement should be sent to the agencies making such comments. Whether those agencies then elect to comment again on the basis of the draft impact statement is a matter to be left to the discretion of the commenting agency depending on its resources, the significance of the project and the extent to which its earlier comments were considered in preparing the draft statement.

4. The clearinghouses may also be used, by mutual agreement, for securing reviews of the draft environmental impact statement. However, the Federal agency may wish to deal directly with appropriate State or local agencies in the review of impact statements because the clearinghouses may be unwilling or unable to handle this phase of the process. In some cases, the Governor may have designated a specific agency, other than the clearinghouse, for securing reviews of impact statements. In any case, the clearinghouses should be sent copies of the impact statement.

5. To aid clearinghouses in coordinating State and local comments, draft statements should include copies of State and local agency comments made earlier under the A-95 process and should indicate on the summary sheet those other agencies from which comments have been requested, as specified in Attachment 1.

return arrow Back to Top

Need assistance?