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®: CRE Regulatory Action of the Week

CEQ Requests Comment on Draft NEPA Guidance
On December 13, 2011, the U.S. Council on Environmental Quality published Federal Register notice of its draft guidance on Improving the Process for Preparing Efficient and Timely Environmental Reviews under the National Environmental Policy Act. Public comment on this draft guidance must be received by CEQ on or before January 27, 2012.

CEQ intends its draft guidance to implement the following NEPA principles:

"(1) NEPA encourages simple, straightforward, and concise reviews and documentation that are proportionate to and effectively convey the relevant considerations in a timely manner to the public and decisionmakers, while comprehensively addressing the issues presented;

(2) NEPA should be integrated into project planning rather than be an after-the-fact add-on;

(3) NEPA reviews should coordinate and take appropriate advantage of existing documents and studies, including through adoption and incorporation by reference;

(4) Early and well-defined scoping can assist in focusing environmental reviews on appropriate issues that would be meaningful to a decision on the proposed action;

(5) Agencies are encouraged to develop meaningful and expeditious timelines for environmental reviews; and

(6) Agencies should respond to comments in proportion to the scope and scale of the environmental issues raised."

  • Click here to read CEQ's Federal Register notice