NEPA Update Pt 2
Washington Farm Bureau Director of Government Affairs, Tom Davis says the changes should reduce the time of the review process significantly …
DAVIS … “You know, when this was first put in place, they believed that the environmental review, and this is going back to the Jimmy Carter Administration, that the environmental review would take place in about 12-months. And now, the average environmental review, including the Environmental Impact Statement, are taking an average of 4-and-a-half years, and some of these documents, the average length of the documents, is running some four hundred and some pages.”
Over time, Davis says that and legal challenges have delayed some of the simplest of projects to more than 6-years …
DAVIS … “We believe that this update to the rule and how things will be reviewed will address situations like that, which is fortunate because in rural Washington, as we’ve seen now with all of this COVID restrictions, because people are at home more, the impact on school kids needing access to the internet, rural broadband needs to be expanded across our rural communities and all of that needs to go through NEPA if indeed there’s federal lands involved, federal agencies or federal dollars.”
Davis says other projects involving highway improvements and all water usage should benefit from these changes.
Tune in tomorrow for more.