NEPA – What Realty Specialists Need to Know

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Tracy A. Ribeiro. DOE-Office of Legacy Management. NEPA Compliance Officer/Environmental Program Manager. DOE FIMS/Real Estate Workshop. May 2017. NEPA – What Realty Specialists Need to Know. TOPICS. ID: 668662 Download Presentation

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NEPA – What Realty Specialists Need to Know

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NEPA – What Realty Specialists Need to Know

Tracy A. Ribeiro

DOE-Office of Legacy Management

NEPA Compliance Officer/Environmental Program Manager

DOE FIMS/Real Estate Workshop

May 2017


NEPA – What Realty Specialists Need to Know


NEPA Regulations

When does NEPA Apply?Basic Features of NEPATypes of NEPA DocumentsCategorical ExclusionsEnvironmental AssessmentsEnvironmental Impact Statements


= Nugget of Information


NEPA – What Realty Specialists Need to


NEPA Regulations

National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA)

NEPA became law January 1, 1970First major environmental law in the United States

Established national environmental policies, set goals, and provided means for carrying out policiesEstablished a Council on Environmental Quality (CEQ)Reports to PresidentEstablished NEPA regulations

and provided NEPA guidance to federal agencies

All U.S. federal agencies must develop internal procedures

for compliance


DOE has regulations and procedures, which do differ from other agency regulations and procedures


NEPA – What Realty Specialists Need to


When does NEPA Apply?

Applies to any DOE action affecting the quality of the environmentAction means a project, program, plan, or policy…that is subject to DOE's control and responsibility (e.g., DOE makes a decision or provides funding

)Action does not have to be significant to warrant NEPA review

Need to consider affects on all of the following- type of media (air, water, soil), humans (noise, health, social), and both cultural and natural resources Not restricted to “turning a shovel”Reasonably connected actions cannot be separated (no segmentation) Ex. Establishing a lease should take into consideration how the property will be used and what actions will be performed on the property4


NEPA – What Realty Specialists Need to


Basic Features of NEPA

A decision-making

process to be incorporated into project planningEnsures stakeholders are informed in decisions regarding human and natural environments

Must be completed before a action can be takenDoes not set standards for environmental protection or conservationCompliance with other laws is not a substitute for compliance with the NEPA process and vice-versaDoes not require selection of the most environmentally protective alternative, nor prohibit all adverse environmental effects



NEPA – What Realty Specialists Need to


Types of NEPA Review Documents

Categorical Exclusion (CatEx) determination

Environmental Assessment (EA)Environmental Impact Statement (EIS)


Potentially Increasing-


Public interaction

Time to completion


DOE NEPA Actions Since 2010


NEPA – What Realty Specialists Need to


Types of NEPA

Documents – CatEx

Each federal agency has developed categorical exclusions which are categories of actions that do not individually or cumulatively have a significant effect on the human environment

NEPA Compliance Officer makes determinationDOE has 2 types of CatExsGeneral Agency Actions:Typically administrative, only require a cursory NEPA reviewExamples-Routine DOE business actions


gathering, analysis, and



Be Careful! Real property actions may not just be “routine business actions”, especially if they are connected with other actions


NEPA – What Realty Specialists Need to


Types of NEPA

Documents- CatEx

Specific Agency Actions:Are subject to five special conditions in order for them to be excluded

Require a documented NEPA review Require external posting of resulting determinationsExamples-Siting, construction, modification, decommissioning ofSupport buildingsWells (water wells or monitoring wells)

Meteorological towers

Property Transfers

Real or personal propertyTransfer, lease, disposition, or acquisitionDetermination of excess real property

Installation and relocation of machinery, equipment, and instrumentation



Photos to be added



NEPA – What Realty Specialists Need to


Types of NEPA

Documents- EAs and EISsAn Environmental Assessment

(EA) or an Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) should be prepared if an action is

not categorically excluded by DOE or the action has special conditionsEA Can be used as the review if it is unclear if impacts will be significant Can be bypassed by moving directly to an EISThe determination document can be A Finding of No Significant Impact (FONSI) or A decision to proceed to an EIS

Facilitates preparation of an EIS when one is necessary.



NEPA – What Realty Specialists Need to Know

Types of NEPA Documents- EAs and EISs


Required if proposed actions have high level of public concern or impacts that are considered significantMay initiate an EIS without a preceding

EAProvides detailed analysis of the affected environment

The determination document is called a Record of Decision (ROD)11


NEPA – What Realty Specialists Need to Know


Summary of

NEPA Documents12

* DOE’s Implementing Procedures (10 CFR Part 1021)

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