The National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) was passed in 1970 as part of the Nixon Administration. NEPA requires Federal agencies to take into account the environmental consequences of their proposed actions. The Environmental Planning Management and Budget has established four criteria under which an action may be categorised as a “major federal action”: significant impact on the environment, magnitude or degree of public interest, complexity or resource requirements, and the likelihood of being repeated.
To determine whether an activity meets one of these criteria, agencies must assess the environmental effects of the proposed action, including potential effects on human health and the environment.
When an agency determines that a proposed action may have a significant impact on the environment, it must prepare an Environmental Impact Statement (EIS). The EIS will describe how the agency believes the proposed action will affect natural resources, wildlife, cultural resources, and human health.
In addition, the EIS must evaluate alternatives to the proposed action and consider any adverse environmental effects that would result from those alternatives. The EIS must be approved by OMB before any major federal action can take place.
The National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) was passed in 1969 and is a federal law that requires the preparation of an environmental impact statement (EIS) for any major federal action that could potentially have a significant impact on the environment. The EIS is a comprehensive document that describes the environmental impacts of the proposed action and alternatives and helps to identify ways to lessen or avoid those impacts.