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Title 47

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Subpart I - Procedures Implementing the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969
Source:

51 FR 15000, Apr. 22, 1986, unless otherwise noted.

§ 1.1301 Basis and purpose.

The provisions of this subpart implement Subchapter I of the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969, as amended, 42 U.S.C. 4321-4335.

§ 1.1302 Cross-reference; Regulations of the Council on Environmental Quality.

A further explanation regarding implementation of the National Environmental Policy Act is provided by the regulations issued by the Council on Environmental Quality, 40 CFR 1500-1508.28.

§ 1.1303 Scope.

The provisions of this subpart shall apply to all Commission actions that may or will have a significant impact on the quality of the human environment. To the extent that other provisions of the Commission's rules and regulations are inconsistent with the subpart, the provisions of this subpart shall govern.

[55 FR 20396, May 16, 1990]

§ 1.1304 Information, assistance, and waiver of electronic filing and service requirements.

(a) For general information and assistance concerning the provisions of this subpart, the Office of General Counsel may be contacted, (202) 418-1700. For more specific information, the Bureau responsible for processing a specific application should be contacted.

(b) All submissions relating to this subpart shall be made electronically. If an interested party is unable to submit or serve a filing electronically, or if it would be unreasonably burdensome to do so, such party may submit its filing on paper to the appropriate address for the Commission Secretary and serve the filing on other parties by mail. Such party should include as part of its paper submission a request for waiver of the electronic filing requirement. Such waiver request must contain an explanation addressing the requestor's inability to file electronically or why electronic filing would be unreasonably burdensome. Either showing will be sufficient to obtain a waiver under this section.

[85 FR 85530, Dec. 29, 2020]

§ 1.1305 Actions which normally will have a significant impact upon the environment, for which Environmental Impact Statements must be prepared.

Any Commission action deemed to have a significant effect upon the quality of the human environment requires the preparation of a Draft Environmental Impact Statement (DEIS) and Final Environmental Impact Statement (FEIS) (collectively referred to as EISs) (see §§ 1.1314, 1.1315 and 1.1317). The Commission has reviewed representative actions and has found no common pattern which would enable it to specify actions that will thus automatically require EISs.

Note:

Our current application forms refer applicants to § 1.1305 to determine if their proposals are such that the submission of environmental information is required (see § 1.1311). Until the application forms are revised to reflect our new environmental rules, applicants should refer to § 1.1307. Section 1.1307 now delineates those actions for which applicants must submit environmental information.

§ 1.1306 Actions which are categorically excluded from environmental processing.

(a) Except as provided in § 1.1307 (c) and (d), Commission actions not covered by § 1.1307 (a) and (b) are deemed individually and cumulatively to have no significant effect on the quality of the human environment and are categorically excluded from environmental processing.

(b) Specifically, any Commission action with respect to any new application, or minor or major modifications of existing or authorized facilities or equipment, will be categorically excluded, provided such proposals do not:

(1) Involve a site location specified under § 1.1307(a) (1)-(7), or

(2) Involve high intensity lighting under § 1.1307(a)(8).

(3) Result in human exposure to radiofrequency radiation in excess of the applicable safety standards specified in § 1.1307(b).

(c)

(1) Unless § 1.1307(a)(4) is applicable, the provisions of § 1.1307(a) requiring the preparation of EAs do not encompass the construction of wireless facilities, including deployments on new or replacement poles, if:

(i) The facilities will be located in a right-of-way that is designated by a Federal, State, local, or Tribal government for communications towers, above-ground utility transmission or distribution lines, or any associated structures and equipment;

(ii) The right-of-way is in active use for such designated purposes; and

(iii) The facilities would not

(A) Increase the height of the tower or non-tower structure by more than 10% or twenty feet, whichever is greater, over existing support structures that are located in the right-of-way within the vicinity of the proposed construction;

(B) Involve the installation of more than four new equipment cabinets or more than one new equipment shelter;

(C) Add an appurtenance to the body of the structure that would protrude from the edge of the structure more than twenty feet, or more than the width of the structure at the level of the appurtenance, whichever is greater (except that the deployment may exceed this size limit if necessary to shelter the antenna from inclement weather or to connect the antenna to the tower via cable); or

(D) Involve excavation outside the current site, defined as the area that is within the boundaries of the leased or owned property surrounding the deployment or that is in proximity to the structure and within the boundaries of the utility easement on which the facility is to be deployed, whichever is more restrictive.

(2) Such wireless facilities are subject to § 1.1307(b) and require EAs if their construction would result in human exposure to radiofrequency radiation in excess of the applicable health and safety guidelines cited in § 1.1307(b).

Note 1:

The provisions of § 1.1307(a) requiring the preparation of EAs do not encompass the mounting of antenna(s) and associated equipment (such as wiring, cabling, cabinets, or backup-power), on or in an existing building, or on an antenna tower or other man-made structure, unless § 1.1307(a)(4) is applicable. Such antennas are subject to § 1.1307(b) of this part and require EAs if their construction would result in human exposure to radiofrequency radiation in excess of the applicable health and safety guidelines cited in § 1.1307(b) of this part. The provisions of § 1.1307 (a) and (b) of this part do not encompass the installation of aerial wire or cable over existing aerial corridors of prior or permitted use or the underground installation of wire or cable along existing underground corridors of prior or permitted use, established by the applicant or others. The use of existing buildings, towers or corridors is an environmentally desirable alternative to the construction of new facilities and is encouraged. The provisions of § 1.1307(a) and (b) of this part do not encompass the construction of new submarine cable systems.

Note 2:

The specific height of an antenna tower or supporting structure, as well as the specific diameter of a satellite earth station, in and of itself, will not be deemed sufficient to warrant environmental processing, see § 1.1307 and § 1.1308, except as required by the Bureau pursuant to the Note to § 1.1307(d).

Note 3:

The construction of an antenna tower or supporting structure in an established “antenna farm”: (i.e., an area in which similar antenna towers are clustered, whether or not such area has been officially designated as an antenna farm), will be categorically excluded unless one or more of the antennas to be mounted on the tower or structure are subject to the provisions of § 1.1307(b) and the additional radiofrequency radiation from the antenna(s) on the new tower or structure would cause human exposure in excess of the applicable health and safety guidelines cited in § 1.1307(b).

[51 FR 15000, Apr. 22, 1986, as amended at 51 FR 18889, May 23, 1986; 53 FR 28393, July 28, 1988; 56 FR 13414, Apr. 2, 1991; 64 FR 19061, Apr. 19, 1999; 77 FR 3952, Jan. 26, 2012; 80 FR 1268, Jan. 8, 2015]

§ 1.1307 Actions that may have a significant environmental effect, for which Environmental Assessments (EAs) must be prepared.

(a) Commission actions with respect to the following types of facilities may significantly affect the environment and thus require the preparation of EAs by the applicant (see §§ 1.1308 and 1.1311) and may require further Commission environmental processing (see §§ 1.1314, 1.1315 and 1.1317):

(1) Facilities that are to be located in an officially designated wilderness area.

(2) Facilities that are to be located in an officially designated wildlife preserve.

(3) Facilities that:

(i) May affect listed threatened or endangered species or designated critical habitats; or

(ii) are likely to jeopardize the continued existence of any proposed endangered or threatened species or likely to result in the destruction or adverse modification of proposed critical habitats, as determined by the Secretary of the Interior pursuant to the Endangered Species Act of 1973.

Note:

The list of endangered and threatened species is contained in 50 CFR 17.11, 17.22, 222.23(a) and 227.4. The list of designated critical habitats is contained in 50 CFR 17.95, 17.96 and part 226. To ascertain the status of proposed species and habitats, inquiries may be directed to the Regional Director of the Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior.

(4) Facilities that may affect districts, sites, buildings, structures or objects, significant in American history, architecture, archeology, engineering or culture, that are listed, or are eligible for listing, in the National Register of Historic Places (see 54 U.S.C. 300308; 36 CFR parts 60 and 800), and that are subject to review pursuant to section 1.1320 and have been determined through that review process to have adverse effects on identified historic properties.

(5) Facilities that may affect Indian religious sites.

(6) Facilities to be located in floodplains, if the facilities will not be placed at least one foot above the base flood elevation of the floodplain.

(7) Facilities whose construction will involve significant change in surface features (e.g., wetland fill, deforestation or water diversion). (In the case of wetlands on Federal property, see Executive Order 11990.)

(8) Antenna towers and/or supporting structures that are to be equipped with high intensity white lights which are to be located in residential neighborhoods, as defined by the applicable zoning law.

(b)

(1) Requirements.

(i) With respect to the limits on human exposure to RF provided in § 1.1310 of this chapter, applicants to the Commission for the grant or modification of construction permits, licenses or renewals thereof, temporary authorities, equipment authorizations, or any other authorizations for radiofrequency sources must either:

(A) Determine that they qualify for an exemption pursuant to § 1.1307(b)(3);

(B) Prepare an evaluation of the human exposure to RF radiation pursuant to § 1.1310 and include in the application a statement confirming compliance with the limits in § 1.1310; or

(C) Prepare an Environmental Assessment if those RF sources would cause human exposure to levels of RF radiation in excess of the limits in § 1.1310.

(ii) Compliance with these limits for fixed RF source(s) may be accomplished by use of mitigation actions, as provided in § 1.1307(b)(4). Upon request by the Commission, the party seeking or holding such authorization must electronically submit technical information showing the basis for such compliance, either by exemption or evaluation. Notwithstanding the preceding requirements, in the event that RF sources cause human exposure to levels of RF radiation in excess of the limits in § 1.1310 of this chapter, such RF exposure exemptions and evaluations are not deemed sufficient to show that there is no significant effect on the quality of the human environment or that the RF sources are categorically excluded from environmental processing.

(2) Definitions. For the purposes of this section, the following definitions shall apply.

Available maximum time-averaged power for an RF source is the maximum available RF power (into a matched load) as averaged over a time-averaging period;

Category One is any spatial region that is compliant with the general population exposure limit with continuous exposure or source-based time-averaged exposure;

Category Two is any spatial region where the general population exposure limit is exceeded but that is compliant with the occupational exposure limit with continuous exposure;

Category Three is any spatial region where the occupational exposure limit is exceeded but by no more than ten times the limit;

Category Four is any spatial region where the exposure is more than ten times the occupational exposure limit or where there is a possibility for serious injury on contact.

Continuous exposure refers to the maximum time-averaged exposure at a given location for an RF source and assumes that exposure may take place indefinitely. The exposure limits in § 1.1310 of this chapter are used to establish the spatial regions where mitigation measures are necessary assuming continuous exposure as prescribed in § 1.1307(b)(4) of this chapter.

Effective Radiated Power (ERP) is the product of the maximum antenna gain which is the largest far-field power gain relative to a dipole in any direction for each transverse polarization component, and the maximum delivered time-averaged power which is the largest net power delivered or supplied to an antenna as averaged over a time-averaging period; ERP is summed over two polarizations when present;

Exemption for (an) RF source(s) is solely from the obligation to perform a routine environmental evaluation to demonstrate compliance with the RF exposure limits in § 1.1310 of this chapter; it is not exemption from the equipment authorization procedures described in part 2 of this chapter, not exemption from general obligations of compliance with the RF exposure limits in § 1.1310 of this chapter, and not exemption from determination of whether there is no significant effect on the quality of the human environment under § 1.1306 of this chapter.

Fixed RF source is one that is physically secured at one location, even temporarily, and is not able to be easily moved to another location while radiating;

Mobile device is as defined in § 2.1091(b) of this chapter;

Plane-wave equivalent power density is the square of the root-mean-square (rms) electric field strength divided by the impedance of free space (377 ohms).

Portable device is as defined in § 2.1093(b) of this chapter;

Positive access control is mitigation by proactive preclusion of unauthorized access to the region surrounding an RF source where the continuous exposure limit for the general population is exceeded. Examples of such controls include locked doors, ladder cages, or effective fences, as well as enforced prohibition of public access to external surfaces of buildings. However, it does not include natural barriers or other access restrictions that did not require any action on the part of the licensee or property management.

Radiating structure is an unshielded RF current-carrying conductor that generates an RF reactive near electric or magnetic field and/or radiates an RF electromagnetic wave. It is the component of an RF source that transmits, generates, or reradiates an RF fields, such as an antenna, aperture, coil, or plate.

RF source is Commission-regulated equipment that transmits or generates RF fields or waves, whether intentionally or unintentionally, via one or more radiating structure(s). Multiple RF sources may exist in a single device.

Separation distance (variable R in Table 1) is the minimum distance in any direction from any part of a radiating structure and any part of the body of a nearby person;

Source-based time averaging is an average of instantaneous exposure over a time-averaging period that is based on an inherent property or duty-cycle of a device to ensure compliance with the continuous exposure limits;

Time-averaging period is a time period not to exceed 30 minutes for fixed RF sources or a time period inherent from device transmission characteristics not to exceed 30 minutes for mobile and portable RF sources;

Transient individual is an untrained person in a location where occupational/controlled limits apply, and he or she must be made aware of the potential for exposure and be supervised by trained personnel pursuant to § 1.1307(b)(4) of this chapter where use of time averaging is required to ensure compliance with the general population exposure limits in § 1.1310 of this chapter.

(3) Determination of exemption.

(i) For single RF sources (i.e., any single fixed RF source, mobile device, or portable device, as defined in paragraph (b)(2) of this section): A single RF source is exempt if:

(A) The available maximum time-averaged power is no more than 1 mW, regardless of separation distance. This exemption may not be used in conjunction with other exemption criteria other than those in paragraph (b)(3)(ii)(A) of this section. Medical implant devices may only use this exemption and that in paragraph (b)(3)(ii)(A);

(B) Or the available maximum time-averaged power or effective radiated power (ERP), whichever is greater, is less than or equal to the threshold Pth (mW) described in the following formula. This method shall only be used at separation distances (cm) from 0.5 centimeters to 40 centimeters and at frequencies from 0.3 GHz to 6 GHz (inclusive). Pth is given by:

(C) Or using Table 1 and the minimum separation distance (R in meters) from the body of a nearby person for the frequency (f in MHz) at which the source operates, the ERP (watts) is no more than the calculated value prescribed for that frequency. For the exemption in Table 1 to apply, R must be at least λ/2π, where λ is the free-space operating wavelength in meters. If the ERP of a single RF source is not easily obtained, then the available maximum time-averaged power may be used in lieu of ERP if the physical dimensions of the radiating structure(s) do not exceed the electrical length of λ/4 or if the antenna gain is less than that of a half-wave dipole (1.64 linear value).

Table 1 to § 1.1307(b)(3)(i)(C) - Single RF Sources Subject to Routine Environmental Evaluation

RF Source
frequency
(MHz)
Threshold ERP
(watts)
0.3-1.34 1,920 R2.
1.34-30 3,450 R2/f2.
30-300 3.83 R2.
300-1,500 0.0128 R2f.
1,500-100,000 19.2R2.

(ii) For multiple RF sources: Multiple RF sources are exempt if:

(A) The available maximum time-averaged power of each source is no more than 1 mW and there is a separation distance of two centimeters between any portion of a radiating structure operating and the nearest portion of any other radiating structure in the same device, except if the sum of multiple sources is less than 1 mW during the time-averaging period, in which case they may be treated as a single source (separation is not required). This exemption may not be used in conjunction with other exemption criteria other than those is paragraph (b)(3)(i)(A) of this section. Medical implant devices may only use this exemption and that in paragraph (b)(3)(i)(A).

(B) in the case of fixed RF sources operating in the same time-averaging period, or of multiple mobile or portable RF sources within a device operating in the same time averaging period, if the sum of the fractional contributions to the applicable thresholds is less than or equal to 1 as indicated in the following equation.

Where:

a = number of fixed, mobile, or portable RF sources claiming exemption using paragraph (b)(3)(i)(B) of this section for Pth, including existing exempt transmitters and those being added.

b = number of fixed, mobile, or portable RF sources claiming exemption using paragraph (b)(3)(i)(C) of this section for Threshold ERP, including existing exempt transmitters and those being added.

c = number of existing fixed, mobile, or portable RF sources with known evaluation for the specified minimum distance including existing evaluated transmitters.

Pi = the available maximum time-averaged power or the ERP, whichever is greater, for fixed, mobile, or portable RF source i at a distance between 0.5 cm and 40 cm (inclusive).

Pth,i = the exemption threshold power (Pth) according to paragraph (b)(3)(i)(B) of this section for fixed, mobile, or portable RF source i.

ERPj = the ERP of fixed, mobile, or portable RF source j.

ERPth,j = exemption threshold ERP for fixed, mobile, or portable RF source j, at a distance of at least λ/2π according to the applicable formula of paragraph (b)(3)(i)(C) of this section.

Evaluatedk = the maximum reported SAR or MPE of fixed, mobile, or portable RF source k either in the device or at the transmitter site from an existing evaluation at the location of exposure.

Exposure Limitk = either the general population/uncontrolled maximum permissible exposure (MPE) or specific absorption rate (SAR) limit for each fixed, mobile, or portable RF source k, as applicable from § 1.1310 of this chapter.

(4) Mitigation.

(i) As provided in paragraphs (b)(4)(ii) through (vi) of this section, specific mitigation actions are required for fixed RF sources to the extent necessary to ensure compliance with our exposure limits, including the implementation of an RF safety plan, restriction of access to those RF sources, and disclosure of spatial regions where exposure limits are exceeded.

(ii) Category One - INFORMATION: No mitigation actions are required when the RF source does not cause continuous or source-based time-averaged exposure in excess of the general population limit in s§ 1.1310 of this part. Optionally a green “INFORMATION” sign may offer information to those persons who might be approaching RF sources. This optional sign, when used, must include at least the following information: Appropriate signal word “INFORMATION” and associated color (green), an explanation of the safety precautions to be observed when closer to the antenna than the information sign, a reminder to obey all postings and boundaries (if higher categories are nearby), up-to-date licensee (or operator) contact information (if higher categories are nearby), and a place to get additional information (such as a website, if no higher categories are nearby).

(iii) Category Two - NOTICE: Mitigation actions are required in the form of signs and positive access control surrounding the boundary where the continuous exposure limit is exceeded for the general population, with the appropriate signal word “NOTICE” and associated color (blue) on the signs. Signs must contain the components discussed in paragraph (b)(4)(vi) of this section. Under certain controlled conditions, such as on a rooftop with limited access, a sign attached directly to the surface of an antenna will be considered sufficient if the sign specifies a minimum approach distance and is readable at this separation distance and at locations required for compliance with the general population exposure limit in § 1.1310 of this part. Appropriate training is required for any occupational personnel with access to controlled areas within restrictive barriers where the general population exposure limit is exceeded, and transient individuals must be supervised by trained occupational personnel upon entering any of these areas. Use of time averaging is required for transient individuals to ensure compliance with the general population exposure limit.

(iv) Category Three - CAUTION: Signs (with the appropriate signal word “CAUTION” and associated color (yellow) on the signs), controls, or indicators (e.g., chains, railings, contrasting paint, diagrams) are required (in addition to the positive access control established for Category Two) surrounding the area in which the exposure limit for occupational personnel in a controlled environment is exceeded by no more than a factor of ten. Signs must contain the components discussed in paragraph (b)(4)(vi) of this section. If the boundaries between Category Two and Three are such that placement of both Category Two and Three signs would be in the same location, then the Category Two sign is optional. Under certain controlled conditions, such as on a rooftop with limited access, a sign may be attached directly to the surface of an antenna within a controlled environment if it specifies the minimum approach distance and is readable at this distance and at locations required for compliance with the occupational exposure limit in § 1.1310 of this part. If signs are not used at the occupational exposure limit boundary, controls or indicators (e.g., chains, railings, contrasting paint, diagrams, etc.) must designate the boundary where the occupational exposure limit is exceeded. Additionally, appropriate training is required for any occupational personnel with access to the controlled area where the general population exposure limit is exceeded, and transient individuals must be supervised by trained personnel upon entering any of these areas. Use of time averaging is required for transient individuals to ensure compliance with the general population exposure limit. Further mitigation by reducing exposure time in accord with six-minute time averaging is required for occupational personnel in the area in which the occupational exposure limit is exceeded. However, proper use of RF personal protective equipment may be considered sufficient in lieu of time averaging for occupational personnel in the areas in which the occupational exposure limit is exceeded. If such procedures or power reduction, and therefore Category reduction, are not feasible, then lockout/tagout procedures in 29 CFR 1910.147 must be followed.

(v) Category Four - WARNING/DANGER: Where the occupational limit could be exceeded by a factor of more than ten, “WARNING” signs with the associated color (orange), controls, or indicators (e.g., chains, railings, contrasting paint, diagrams) are required (in addition to the positive access control established for Category Two) surrounding the area in which the occupational exposure limit in a controlled environment is exceeded by more than a factor of ten Signs must contain the components discussed in paragraph (b)(4)(vi) of this section. “DANGER” signs with the associated color (red) are required where immediate and serious injury will occur on contact, in addition to positive access control, regardless of mitigation actions taken in Categories Two or Three. If the boundaries between Category Three and Four are such that placement of both Category Three and Four signs would be in the same location, then the Category Three sign is optional. No access is permitted without Category reduction. If power reduction, and therefore Category reduction, is not feasible, then lockout/tagout procedures in 29 CFR 1910.147 must be followed.

(vi) RF exposure advisory signs must be viewable and readable from the boundary where the applicable exposure limits are exceeded, pursuant to 29 CFR 1910.145, and include at least the following five components:

(A) Appropriate signal word, associated color {i.e., {DANGER” (red), “WARNING” (orange), “CAUTION,” (yellow) “NOTICE” (blue)};

(B) RF energy advisory symbol;

(C) An explanation of the RF source;

(D) Behavior necessary to comply with the exposure limits; and

(E) Up-to-date contact information.

(5) Responsibility for compliance.

(i) In general, when the exposure limits specified in § 1.1310 of this part are exceeded in an accessible area due to the emissions from multiple fixed RF sources, actions necessary to bring the area into compliance or preparation of an Environmental Assessment (EA) as specified in § 1.1311 of this part are the shared responsibility of all licensees whose RF sources produce, at the area in question, levels that exceed 5% of the applicable exposure limit proportional to power. However, a licensee demonstrating that its facility was not the most recently modified or newly-constructed facility at the site establishes a rebuttable presumption that such licensee should not be liable in an enforcement proceeding relating to the period of non-compliance. Field strengths must be squared to be proportional to SAR or power density. Specifically, these compliance requirements apply if the square of the electric or magnetic field strength exposure level applicable to a particular RF source exceeds 5% of the square of the electric or magnetic field strength limit at the area in question where the levels due to multiple fixed RF sources exceed the exposure limit. Site owners and managers are expected to allow applicants and licensees to take reasonable steps to comply with the requirements contained in paragraph (b)(1) of this section and, where feasible, should encourage co-location of RF sources and common solutions for controlling access to areas where the RF exposure limits contained in § 1.1310 of this part might be exceeded. Applicants and licensees are required to share technical information necessary to ensure joint compliance with the exposure limits, including informing other licensees at a site in question of evaluations indicating possible non-compliance with the exposure limits.

(ii) Applicants for proposed RF sources that would cause non-compliance with the limits specified in § 1.1310 at an accessible area previously in compliance must submit an EA if emissions from the applicant's RF source would produce, at the area in question, levels that exceed 5% of the applicable exposure limit. Field strengths must be squared if necessary to be proportional to SAR or power density.

(iii) Renewal applicants whose RF sources would cause non-compliance with the limits specified in § 1.1310 at an accessible area previously in compliance must submit an EA if emissions from the applicant's RF source would produce, at the area in question, levels that exceed 5% of the applicable exposure limit. Field strengths must be squared if necessary to be proportional to SAR or power density.

(c) If an interested person alleges that a particular action, otherwise categorically excluded, will have a significant environmental effect, the person shall electronically submit to the Bureau responsible for processing that action a written petition setting forth in detail the reasons justifying or circumstances necessitating environmental consideration in the decision-making process. If an interested person is unable to submit electronically or if filing electronically would be unreasonably burdensome, such person may submit the petition by mail, with a request for waiver under § 1.1304(b). (See § 1.1313). The Bureau shall review the petition and consider the environmental concerns that have been raised. If the Bureau determines that the action may have a significant environmental impact, the Bureau will require the applicant to prepare an EA (see §§ 1.1308 and 1.1311), which will serve as the basis for the determination to proceed with or terminate environmental processing.

(d) If the Bureau responsible for processing a particular action, otherwise categorically excluded, determines that the proposal may have a significant environmental impact, the Bureau, on its own motion, shall require the applicant to electronically submit an EA. The Bureau will review and consider the EA as in paragraph (c) of this section.

Note to paragraph (d):

Pending a final determination as to what, if any, permanent measures should be adopted specifically for the protection of migratory birds, the Bureau shall require an Environmental Assessment for an otherwise categorically excluded action involving a new or existing antenna structure, for which an antenna structure registration application (FCC Form 854) is required under part 17 of this chapter, if the proposed antenna structure will be over 450 feet in height above ground level (AGL) and involves either:

1. Construction of a new antenna structure;

2. Modification or replacement of an existing antenna structure involving a substantial increase in size as defined in paragraph I(C)(1)(3) of Appendix B to part 1 of this chapter; or

3. Addition of lighting or adoption of a less preferred lighting style as defined in § 17.4(c)(1)(iii) of this chapter. The Bureau shall consider whether to require an EA for other antenna structures subject to § 17.4(c) of this chapter in accordance with § 17.4(c)(8) of this chapter. An Environmental Assessment required pursuant to this note will be subject to the same procedures that apply to any Environmental Assessment required for a proposed tower or modification of an existing tower for which an antenna structure registration application (FCC Form 854) is required, as set forth in § 17.4(c) of this chapter.

(e) No State or local government or instrumentality thereof may regulate the placement, construction, and modification of personal wireless service facilities on the basis of the environmental effects of radio frequency emissions to the extent that such facilities comply with the regulations contained in this chapter concerning the environmental effects of such emissions. For purposes of this paragraph:

(1) The term personal wireless service means commercial mobile services, unlicensed wireless services, and common carrier wireless exchange access services;

(2) The term personal wireless service facilities means facilities for the provision of personal wireless services;

(3) The term unlicensed wireless services means the offering of telecommunications services using duly authorized devices which do not require individual licenses, but does not mean the provision of direct-to-home satellite services; and

(4) The term direct-to-home satellite services means the distribution or broadcasting of programming or services by satellite directly to the subscriber's premises without the use of ground receiving or distribution equipment, except at the subscriber's premises or in the uplink process to the satellite.

[51 FR 15000, Apr. 22, 1986]

§ 1.1308 Consideration of environmental assessments (EAs); findings of no significant impact.

(a) Applicants shall prepare EAs for actions that may have a significant environmental impact (see § 1.1307). An EA is described in detail in § 1.1311 of this part of the Commission rules.

(b) The EA is a document which shall explain the environmental consequences of the proposal and set forth sufficient analysis for the Bureau or the Commission to reach a determination that the proposal will or will not have a significant environmental effect. To assist in making that determination, the Bureau or the Commission may request further information from the applicant, interested persons, and agencies and authorities which have jurisdiction by law or which have relevant expertise.

Note:

With respect to actions specified under § 1.1307 (a)(3) and (a)(4), the Commission shall solicit and consider the comments of the Department of Interior, and the State Historic Preservation Officer and the Advisory Council on Historic Preservation, respectively, in accordance with their established procedures. See Interagency Cooperation - Endangered Species Act of 1973, as amended, 50 CFR part 402; Protection of Historic and Cultural Properties, 36 CFR part 800. In addition, when an action interferes with or adversely affects an American Indian tribe's religious site, the Commission shall solicit the views of that American Indian tribe. See § 1.1307(a)(5).

(c) If the Bureau or the Commission determines, based on an independent review of the EA and any applicable mandatory consultation requirements imposed upon Federal agencies (see note above), that the proposal will have a significant environmental impact upon the quality of the human environment, it will so inform the applicant. The applicant will then have an opportunity to amend its application so as to reduce, minimize, or eliminate environmental problems. See § 1.1309. If the environmental problem is not eliminated, the Bureau will publish in the Federal Register a Notice of Intent (see § 1.1314) that EISs will be prepared (see §§ 1.1315 and 1.1317), or

(d) If the Bureau or Commission determines, based on an independent review of the EA, and any mandatory consultation requirements imposed upon Federal agencies (see the note to paragraph (b) of this section), that the proposal would not have a significant impact, it will make a finding of no significant impact. Thereafter, the application will be processed without further documentation of environmental effect. Pursuant to CEQ regulations, see 40 CFR 1501.4 and 1501.6, the applicant must provide the community notice of the Commission's finding of no significant impact.

[51 FR 15000, Apr. 22, 1986; 51 FR 18889, May 23, 1986, as amended at 53 FR 28394, July 28, 1988]

§ 1.1309 Application amendments.

Applicants are permitted to amend their applications to reduce, minimize, or eliminate potential environmental problems. Amendments shall be made electronically. As a routine matter, an applicant will be permitted to amend its application within thirty (30) days after the Commission or the Bureau informs the applicant that the proposal will have a significant impact upon the quality of the human environment (see § 1.1308(c)). The period of thirty (30) days may be extended upon a showing of good cause.

[85 FR 85530, Dec. 29, 2020]

§ 1.1310 Radiofrequency radiation exposure limits.

(a) Specific absorption rate (SAR) shall be used to evaluate the environmental impact of human exposure to radiofrequency (RF) radiation as specified in § 1.1307(b) of this part within the frequency range of 100 kHz to 6 GHz (inclusive).

(b) The SAR limits for occupational/controlled exposure are 0.4 W/kg, as averaged over the whole body, and a peak spatial-average SAR of 8 W/kg, averaged over any 1 gram of tissue (defined as a tissue volume in the shape of a cube). Exceptions are the parts of the human body treated as extremities, such as hands, wrists, feet, ankles, and pinnae, where the peak spatial-average SAR limit for occupational/controlled exposure is 20 W/kg, averaged over any 10 grams of tissue (defined as a tissue volume in the shape of a cube). Exposure may be averaged over a time period not to exceed 6 minutes to determine compliance with occupational/controlled SAR limits.

(c) The SAR limits for general population/uncontrolled exposure are 0.08 W/kg, as averaged over the whole body, and a peak spatial-average SAR of 1.6 W/kg, averaged over any 1 gram of tissue (defined as a tissue volume in the shape of a cube). Exceptions are the parts of the human body treated as extremities, such as hands, wrists, feet, ankles, and pinnae, where the peak spatial-average SAR limit is 4 W/kg, averaged over any 10 grams of tissue (defined as a tissue volume in the shape of a cube). Exposure may be averaged over a time period not to exceed 30 minutes to determine compliance with general population/uncontrolled SAR limits.

(d)

(1) Evaluation with respect to the SAR limits in this section must demonstrate compliance with both the whole-body and peak spatial-average limits using technically supported measurement or computational methods and exposure conditions in advance of authorization (licensing or equipment certification) and in a manner that facilitates independent assessment and, if appropriate, enforcement. Numerical computation of SAR must be supported by adequate documentation showing that the numerical method as implemented in the computational software has been fully validated; in addition, the equipment under test and exposure conditions must be modeled according to protocols established by FCC-accepted numerical computation standards or available FCC procedures for the specific computational method.

(2) For operations within the frequency range of 300 kHz and 6 GHz (inclusive), the limits for maximum permissible exposure (MPE), derived from whole-body SAR limits and listed in Table 1 in paragraph (e)(1) of this section, may be used instead of whole-body SAR limits as set forth in paragraphs (a) through (c) of this section to evaluate the environmental impact of human exposure to RF radiation as specified in § 1.1307(b) of this part, except for portable devices as defined in § 2.1093 of this chapter as these evaluations shall be performed according to the SAR provisions in § 2.1093.

(3) At operating frequencies above 6 GHz, the MPE limits listed in Table 1 in paragraph (e)(1) of this section shall be used in all cases to evaluate the environmental impact of human exposure to RF radiation as specified in § 1.1307(b) of this part.

(4) Both the MPE limits listed in Table 1 in paragraph (e)(1) of this section and the SAR limits as set forth in paragraphs (a) through (c) of this section are for continuous exposure, that is, for indefinite time periods. Exposure levels higher than the limits are permitted for shorter exposure times, as long as the average exposure over a period not more than the specified averaging time in Table 1 in paragraph (e)(1) is less than (or equal to) the exposure limits. Detailed information on our policies regarding procedures for evaluating compliance with all of these exposure limits can be found in the most recent edition of FCC's OET Bulletin 65, “Evaluating Compliance with FCC Guidelines for Human Exposure to Radiofrequency Electromagnetic Fields,” and its supplements, all available at the FCC's internet website: https://www.fcc.gov/general/oet-bulletins-line, and in the Office of Engineering and Technology (OET) Laboratory Division Knowledge Database (KDB) (https://www.fcc.gov/kdb).

Note to paragraphs (a) through (d):

SAR is a measure of the rate of energy absorption due to exposure to RF electromagnetic energy. These SAR limits to be used for evaluation are based generally on criteria published by the American National Standards Institute (ANSI) for localized SAR in Section 4.2 of “IEEE Standard for Safety Levels with Respect to Human Exposure to Radio Frequency Electromagnetic Fields, 3 kHz to 300 GHz,” ANSI/IEEE Std C95.1-1992, copyright 1992 by the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers, Inc., New York, New York 10017. These criteria for SAR evaluation are similar to those recommended by the National Council on Radiation Protection and Measurements (NCRP) in “Biological Effects and Exposure Criteria for Radiofrequency Electromagnetic Fields,” NCRP Report No. 86, Section 17.4.5, copyright 1986 by NCRP, Bethesda, Maryland 20814. Limits for whole body SAR and peak spatial-average SAR are based on recommendations made in both of these documents. The MPE limits in Table 1 are based generally on criteria published by the NCRP in “Biological Effects and Exposure Criteria for Radiofrequency Electromagnetic Fields,” NCRP Report No. 86, Sections 17.4.1, 17.4.1.1, 17.4.2 and 17.4.3, copyright 1986 by NCRP, Bethesda, Maryland 20814. In the frequency range from 100 MHz to 1500 MHz, these MPE exposure limits for field strength and power density are also generally based on criteria recommended by the ANSI in Section 4.1 of “IEEE Standard for Safety Levels with Respect to Human Exposure to Radio Frequency Electromagnetic Fields, 3 kHz to 300 GHz,” ANSI/IEEE Std C95.1-1992, copyright 1992 by the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers, Inc., New York, New York 10017.

(e)

(1) Table 1 to § 1.1310(e)(1) sets forth limits for Maximum Permissible Exposure (MPE) to radiofrequency electromagnetic fields.

Table 1 to § 1.1310(e)(1) - Limits for Maximum Permissible Exposure (MPE)

Frequency
range
(MHz)
Electric field strength
(V/m)
Magnetic field strength
(A/m)
Power density
(mW/cm2)
Averaging
time
(minutes)
(i) Limits for Occupational/Controlled Exposure
0.3-3.0 614 1.63 *(100) 6
3.0-30 1842/f 4.89/f *(900/f2) <6
30-300 61.4 0.163 1.0 <6
300-1,500 f/300 <6
1,500-100,000 5 <6
(ii) Limits for General Population/Uncontrolled Exposure
0.3-1.34 614 1.63 *(100) <30
1.34-30 824/f 2.19/f *(180/f2) <30
30-300 27.5 0.073 0.2 <30
300-1,500 f/1500 <30
1,500-100,000 1.0 <30

(2) Occupational/controlled exposure limits apply in situations in which persons are exposed as a consequence of their employment provided those persons are fully aware of the potential for exposure and can exercise control over their exposure. The phrase fully aware in the context of applying these exposure limits means that an exposed person has received written and/or verbal information fully explaining the potential for RF exposure resulting from his or her employment. With the exception of transient persons, this phrase also means that an exposed person has received appropriate training regarding work practices relating to controlling or mitigating his or her exposure. In situations when an untrained person is transient through a location where occupational/controlled limits apply, he or she must be made aware of the potential for exposure and be supervised by trained personnel pursuant to § 1.1307(b)(2) of this part where use of time averaging is required to ensure compliance with the general population exposure limit. The phrase exercise control means that an exposed person is allowed and also knows how to reduce or avoid exposure by administrative or engineering work practices, such as use of personal protective equipment or time averaging of exposure.

(3) General population/uncontrolled exposure limits apply in situations in which the general public may be exposed, or in which persons who are exposed as a consequence of their employment may not be fully aware of the potential for exposure or cannot exercise control over their exposure. For example, RF sources intended for consumer use shall be subject to the limits for general population/uncontrolled exposure in this section.

[85 FR 18145, Apr. 1, 2020]

§ 1.1311 Environmental information to be included in the environmental assessment (EA).

(a) The applicant shall submit an EA with each application that is subject to environmental processing (see § 1.1307). The EA shall contain the following information:

(1) For antenna towers and satellite earth stations, a description of the facilities as well as supporting structures and appurtenances, and a description of the site as well as the surrounding area and uses. If high intensity white lighting is proposed or utilized within a residential area, the EA must also address the impact of this lighting upon the residents.

(2) A statement as to the zoning classification of the site, and communications with, or proceedings before and determinations (if any) made by zoning, planning, environmental or other local, state or Federal authorities on matters relating to environmental effect.

(3) A statement as to whether construction of the facilities has been a source of controversy on environmental grounds in the local community.

(4) A discussion of environmental and other considerations which led to the selection of the particular site and, if relevant, the particular facility; the nature and extent of any unavoidable adverse environmental effects, and any alternative sites or facilities which have been or might reasonably be considered.

(5) Any other information that may be requested by the Bureau or Commission.

(6) If endangered or threatened species or their critical habitats may be affected, the applicant's analysis must utilize the best scientific and commercial data available, see 50 CFR 402.14(c).

(b) The information submitted in the EA shall be factual (not argumentative or conclusory) and concise with sufficient detail to explain the environmental consequences and to enable the Commission or Bureau, after an independent review of the EA, to reach a determination concerning the proposal's environmental impact, if any. The EA shall deal specifically with any feature of the site which has special environmental significance (e.g., wilderness areas, wildlife preserves, natural migration paths for birds and other wildlife, and sites of historic, architectural, or archeological value). In the case of historically significant sites, it shall specify the effect of the facilities on any district, site, building, structure or object listed, or eligible for listing, in the National Register of Historic Places. It shall also detail any substantial change in the character of the land utilized (e.g., deforestation, water diversion, wetland fill, or other extensive change of surface features). In the case of wilderness areas, wildlife preserves, or other like areas, the statement shall discuss the effect of any continuing pattern of human intrusion into the area (e.g., necessitated by the operation and maintenance of the facilities).

(c) The EA shall also be accompanied with evidence of site approval which has been obtained from local or Federal land use authorities.

(d) To the extent that such information is submitted in another part of the application, it need not be duplicated in the EA, but adequate cross-reference to such information shall be supplied.

(e) An EA need not be submitted to the Commission if another agency of the Federal Government has assumed responsibility for determining whether of the facilities in question will have a significant effect on the quality of the human environment and, if it will, for invoking the environmental impact statement process.

[51 FR 15000, Apr. 22, 1986, as amended at 51 FR 18889, May 23, 1986; 53 FR 28394, July 28, 1988]

§ 1.1312 Facilities for which no preconstruction authorization is required.

(a) In the case of facilities for which no Commission authorization prior to construction is required by the Commission's rules and regulations the licensee or applicant shall initially ascertain whether the proposed facility may have a significant environmental impact as defined in § 1.1307 of this part or is categorically excluded from environmental processing under § 1.1306 of this part.

(b) If a facility covered by paragraph (a) of this section may have a significant environmental impact, the information required by § 1.1311 shall be submitted electronically by the licensee or applicant and ruled on by the Commission, and environmental processing (if invoked) shall be completed, see § 1.1308, prior to the initiation of construction of the facility.

(c) If a facility covered by paragraph (a) of this section is categorically excluded from environmental processing, the licensee or applicant may proceed with construction and operation of the facility in accordance with the applicable licensing rules and procedures.

(d) If, following the initiation of construction under this section, the licensee or applicant discovers that the proposed facility may have a significant environmental effect, it shall immediately cease construction which may have that effect, and submit the information required by § 1.1311 of this part. The Commission shall rule on that submission and complete further environmental processing (if invoked), see § 1.1308 of this part, before such construction is resumed.

(e) Paragraphs (a) through (d) of this section shall not apply to the construction of mobile stations.

[55 FR 20396, May 16, 1990, as amended at 56 FR 13414, Apr. 2, 1991; 83 FR 19458, May 3, 2018; 84 FR 59567, Nov. 5, 2019; 85 FR 85531, Dec. 29, 2020]

§ 1.1313 Objections.

(a) In the case of an application to which section 309(b) of the Communications Act applies, objections based on environmental considerations shall be filed electronically as petitions to deny. If the interested person is unable to file electronically or if filing electronically would be unreasonably burdensome, such person may submit the petition by mail, with a request for waiver under § 1.1304(b).

(b) Informal objections which are based on environmental considerations must be filed electronically prior to grant of the construction permit, or prior to authorization for facilities that do not require construction permits, or pursuant to the applicable rules governing services subject to lotteries. If the interested person is unable to file electronically or if filing electronically would be unreasonably burdensome, such person may submit the objection by mail, with a request for waiver under § 1.1304(b).

[85 FR 85531, Dec. 29, 2020]

§ 1.1314 Environmental impact statements (EISs).

(a) Draft Environmental Impact Statements (DEISs) (§ 1.1315) and Final Environmental Impact Statements (FEISs) (referred to collectively as EISs) (§ 1.1317) shall be prepared by the Bureau responsible for processing the proposal when the Commission's or the Bureau's analysis of the EA (§ 1.1308) indicates that the proposal will have a significant effect upon the environment and the matter has not been resolved by an amendment.

(b) As soon as practically feasible, the Bureau will publish in the Federal Register a Notice of Intent to prepare EISs. The Notice shall briefly identify the proposal, concisely describe the environmental issues and concerns presented by the subject application, and generally invite participation from affected or involved agencies, authorities and other interested persons.

(c) The EISs shall not address non-environmental considerations. To safeguard against repetitive and unnecessarily lengthy documents, the Statements, where feasible, shall incorporate by reference material set forth in previous documents, with only a brief summary of its content. In preparing the EISs, the Bureau will identify and address the significant environmental issues and eliminate the insignificant issues from analysis.

(d) To assist in the preparation of the EISs, the Bureau may request further information from the applicant, interested persons and agencies and authorities, which have jurisdiction by law or which have relevant expertise. The Bureau may direct that technical studies be made by the applicant and that the applicant obtain expert opinion concerning the potential environmental problems and costs associated with the proposed action, as well as comparative analyses of alternatives. The Bureau may also consult experts in an effort to identify measures that could be taken to minimize the adverse effects and alternatives to the proposed facilities that are not, or are less, objectionable. The Bureau may also direct that objections be raised with appropriate local, state or Federal land use agencies or authorities (if their views have not been previously sought).

(e) The Bureau responsible for processing the particular application and, thus, preparing the EISs shall draft supplements to Statements where significant new circumstances occur or information arises relevant to environmental concerns and bearing upon the application.

(f) The Application, the EA, the DEIS, and the FEIS and all related documents, including the comments filed by the public and any agency, shall be part of the administrative record and will be routinely available for public inspection. All documents and comments shall be filed electronically.

(g) If EISs are to be prepared, the applicant must provide the community with notice of the availability of environmental documents and the scheduling of any Commission hearings in that action.

(h) The timing of agency action with respect to applications subject to EISs is set forth in 40 CFR 1506.10. No decision shall be made until ninety (90) days after the Notice of Availability of the Draft Environmental Impact Statement is published in the Federal Register, and thirty (30) days after the Notice of Availability of the Final Environmental Impact Statement is published in the Federal Register, which time period may run concurrently, See 40 CFR 1506.10(c); see also §§ 1.1315(b) and 1.1317(b).

(i) Guidance concerning preparation of the Draft and Final Environmental Statements is set out in 40 CFR part 1502.

[51 FR 15000, Apr. 22, 1986, as amended at 53 FR 28394, July 28, 1988; 85 FR 85531, Dec. 29, 2020]

§ 1.1315 The Draft Environmental Impact Statement (DEIS); Comments.

(a) The DEIS shall include:

(1) A concise description of the proposal, the nature of the area affected, its uses, and any specific feature of the area that has special environmental significance;

(2) An analysis of the proposal, and reasonable alternatives exploring the important consequent advantages and/or disadvantages of the action and indicating the direct and indirect effects and their significance in terms of the short and long-term uses of the human environment.

(b) When a DEIS and supplements, if any, are prepared, the Commission shall file the Statement with the Office of Federal Activities, Environmental Protection Agency, consistent with its procedures. Public Notice of the availability of the DEIS will be published in the Federal Register by the Environmental Protection Agency.

(c) When copies or summaries of the DEIS are sent to the Environmental Protection Agency, the copies or summaries will be electronically mailed with a request for comment to Federal agencies having jurisdiction by law or special expertise, to the Council on Environmental Quality, to the applicant, to individuals, groups and state and local agencies known to have an interest in the environmental consequences of a grant, and to any other person who has requested a copy. If an interested person lacks access to electronic mail and requests a hard copy or summary of the DEIS, it must be provided by mail.

(d) Any person or agency may comment on the DEIS and the environmental effect of the proposal described therein within 45 days after notice of the availability of the statement is published in the Federal Register. A copy of those comments shall be electronically mailed to the applicant by the person who files them pursuant to § 1.47 and filed electronically with the Commission. If the interested person is unable to file electronically or mail the copy electronically, or if it would be unreasonably burdensome to do so, such person may submit the comments to the Commission and the applicant by mail, with a request for waiver under § 1.1304(b). If a person submitting comments is especially qualified in any way to comment on the environmental impact of the facilities, a statement of his or her qualifications shall be set out in the comments. In addition, comments submitted by an agency shall identify the person(s) who prepared them.

(e) The applicant may electronically file reply comments within 15 days after the time for filing comments has expired. Reply comments shall be filed with the Commission and served by the applicant on persons or agencies which filed comments.

(f) The preparation of a DEIS and the request for comments shall not open the application to attack on other grounds.

[51 FR 15000, Apr. 22, 1986, as amended at 85 FR 85531, Dec. 29, 2020]

§ 1.1317 The Final Environmental Impact Statement (FEIS).

(a) After receipt of comments and reply comments, the Bureau will prepare a FEIS, which shall include a summary of the comments, and a response to the comments, and an analysis of the proposal in terms of its environmental consequences, and any reasonable alternatives, and recommendations, if any, and shall cite the Commission's internal appeal procedures (See 47 CFR 1.101-1.117).

(b) The FEIS and any supplements will be distributed and published in the same manner as specified in § 1.1315. Copies of the comments and reply comments, or summaries thereof where the record is voluminous, shall be attached to the FEIS.

[51 FR 15000, Apr. 22, 1986, as amended at 76 FR 70909, Nov. 16, 2011]

§ 1.1319 Consideration of the environmental impact statements.

(a) If the action is designated for hearing:

(1) In rendering an initial decision, the presiding officer (other than the Commission) shall use the FEIS in considering the environmental issues, together with all other non-environmental issues.

(2) When the Commission serves as the presiding officer or upon its review of an initial decision, the Commission will consider and assess all aspects of the FEIS and will render its decision, giving due consideration to the environmental and nonenvironmental issues.

(b) In all non-hearing matters, the Commission, as part of its decision-making process, will review the FEIS, along with other relevant issues, to ensure that the environmental effects are specifically assessed and given comprehensive consideration.

[51 FR 15000, Apr. 22, 1986, as amended at 62 FR 4171, Jan. 29, 1997; 85 FR 63183, Oct. 6, 2020]

§ 1.1320 Review of Commission undertakings that may affect historic properties.

(a) Review of Commission undertakings. Any Commission undertaking that has the potential to cause effects on historic properties, unless excluded from review pursuant to paragraph (b) of this section, shall be subject to review under section 106 of the National Historic Preservation Act, as amended, 54 U.S.C. 306108, by applying -

(1) The procedures set forth in regulations of the Advisory Council on Historic Preservation, 36 CFR800.3-800.13, or

(2) If applicable, a program alternative established pursuant to 36 CFR 800.14, including but not limited to the following:

(i) The Nationwide Programmatic Agreement for the Collocation of Wireless Antennas, as amended, Appendix B of this part.

(ii) The Nationwide Programmatic Agreement for Review of Effects on Historic Properties for Certain Undertakings, Appendix C of this part.

(iii) The Program Comment to Tailor the Federal Communications Commission's Section 106 Review for Undertakings Involving the Construction of Positive Train Control Wayside Poles and Infrastructure, 79 FR 30861 (May 29, 2014).

(b) Exclusions. The following categories of undertakings are excluded from review under this section:

(1) Projects reviewed by other agencies. Undertakings for which an agency other than the Commission is the lead Federal agency pursuant to 36 CFR 800.2(a)(2).

(2) Projects subject to program alternatives. Undertakings excluded from review under a program alternative established pursuant to 36 CFR 800.14, including those listed in paragraph (a)(2) of this section.

(3) Replacement utility poles. Construction of a replacement for an existing structure where all the following criteria are satisfied:

(i) The original structure -

(A) Is a pole that can hold utility, communications, or related transmission lines;

(B) Was not originally erected for the sole or primary purpose of supporting antennas that operate pursuant to the Commission's spectrum license or authorization; and

(C) Is not itself a historic property.

(ii) The replacement pole -

(A) Is located no more than 10 feet away from the original pole, based on the distance between the centerpoint of the replacement pole and the centerpoint of the original pole; provided that construction of the replacement pole in place of the original pole entails no new ground disturbance (either laterally or in depth) outside previously disturbed areas, including disturbance associated with temporary support of utility, communications, or related transmission lines. For purposes of this paragraph, “ground disturbance” means any activity that moves, compacts, alters, displaces, or penetrates the ground surface of previously undisturbed soils;

(B) Has a height that does not exceed the height of the original pole by more than 5 feet or 10 percent of the height of the original pole, whichever is greater; and

(C) Has an appearance consistent with the quality and appearance of the original pole.

(4) Collocations on buildings and other non-tower structures. The mounting of antennas (including associated equipment such as wiring, cabling, cabinets, or backup power) on buildings or other non-tower structures where the deployment meets the following conditions:

(i) There is an existing antenna on the building or structure;

(ii) One of the following criteria is met:

(A) Non-Visible Antennas. The new antenna is not visible from any adjacent streets or surrounding public spaces and is added in the same vicinity as a pre-existing antenna;

(B) Visible Replacement Antennas. The new antenna is visible from adjacent streets or surrounding public spaces, provided that

(1) It is a replacement for a pre-existing antenna,

(2) The new antenna will be located in the same vicinity as the pre-existing antenna,

(3) The new antenna will be visible only from adjacent streets and surrounding public spaces that also afford views of the pre-existing antenna,

(4) The new antenna is not more than 3 feet larger in height or width (including all protuberances) than the pre-existing antenna, and

(5) No new equipment cabinets are visible from the adjacent streets or surrounding public spaces; or

(C) Other Visible Antennas. The new antenna is visible from adjacent streets or surrounding public spaces, provided that

(1) It is located in the same vicinity as a pre-existing antenna,

(2) The new antenna will be visible only from adjacent streets and surrounding public spaces that also afford views of the pre-existing antenna,

(3) The pre-existing antenna was not deployed pursuant to the exclusion in this paragraph,

(4) The new antenna is not more than three feet larger in height or width (including all protuberances) than the pre-existing antenna, and

(5) No new equipment cabinets are visible from the adjacent streets or surrounding public spaces;

(iii) The new antenna complies with all zoning conditions and historic preservation conditions applicable to existing antennas in the same vicinity that directly mitigate or prevent effects, such as camouflage or concealment requirements;

(iv) The deployment of the new antenna involves no new ground disturbance; and

(v) The deployment would otherwise require the preparation of an Environmental Assessment under 1.1304(a)(4) solely because of the age of the structure.

Note 1 to paragraph (b)(4):

A non-visible new antenna is in the “same vicinity” as a pre-existing antenna if it will be collocated on the same rooftop, façade or other surface. A visible new antenna is in the “same vicinity” as a pre-existing antenna if it is on the same rooftop, façade, or other surface and the centerpoint of the new antenna is within ten feet of the centerpoint of the pre-existing antenna. A deployment causes no new ground disturbance when the depth and width of previous disturbance exceeds the proposed construction depth and width by at least two feet.

(c) Responsibilities of applicants. Applicants seeking Commission authorization for construction or modification of towers, collocation of antennas, or other undertakings shall take the steps mandated by, and comply with the requirements set forth in, Appendix C of this part, sections III-X, or any other applicable program alternative.

(d) Definitions. For purposes of this section, the following definitions apply:

Antenna means an apparatus designed for the purpose of emitting radiofrequency (RF) radiation, to be operated or operating from a fixed location pursuant to Commission authorization, for the transmission of writing, signs, signals, data, images, pictures, and sounds of all kinds, including the transmitting device and any on-site equipment, switches, wiring, cabling, power sources, shelters or cabinets associated with that antenna and added to a tower, structure, or building as part of the original installation of the antenna. For most services, an antenna will be mounted on or in, and is distinct from, a supporting structure such as a tower, structure or building. However, in the case of AM broadcast stations, the entire tower or group of towers constitutes the antenna for that station. For purposes of this section, the term antenna does not include unintentional radiators, mobile stations, or devices authorized under part 15 of this title.

Applicant means a Commission licensee, permittee, or registration holder, or an applicant or prospective applicant for a wireless or broadcast license, authorization or antenna structure registration, and the duly authorized agents, employees, and contractors of any such person or entity.

Collocation means the mounting or installation of an antenna on an existing tower, building or structure for the purpose of transmitting and/or receiving radio frequency signals for communications purposes, whether or not there is an existing antenna on the structure.

Tower means any structure built for the sole or primary purpose of supporting Commission-licensed or authorized antennas, including the on-site fencing, equipment, switches, wiring, cabling, power sources, shelters, or cabinets associated with that tower but not installed as part of an antenna as defined herein.

Undertaking means a project, activity, or program funded in whole or in part under the direct or indirect jurisdiction of the Commission, including those requiring a Commission permit, license or approval. Maintenance and servicing of towers, antennas, and associated equipment are not deemed to be undertakings subject to review under this section.

[82 FR 58758, Dec. 14, 2017]