The purpose of an EIS is to provide information for governmental units, the proposer of the project, and other persons to evaluate proposed projects which have the potential for significant environmental effects, to consider alternatives to the proposed projects, and to explore methods for reducing adverse environmental effects.
An EIS shall be prepared for any project that meets or exceeds the thresholds of any of the EIS categories listed in part 4410.4400.
An EIS shall be prepared:
when the RGU determines that, based on the EAW and any comments or additional information received during the EAW comment period, the proposed project has the potential for significant environmental effects; or
when the RGU and proposer of the project agree that an EIS should be prepared.
Multiple projects and multiple stages of a single project that are connected actions or phased actions must be considered in total when determining the need for an EIS and in preparing the EIS.
In connected actions and phased actions where it is not possible to adequately address all the project components or stages at the time of the initial EIS, a supplemental EIS must be completed before approval and construction of each subsequent project component or stage. The supplemental EIS must address the impacts associated with the particular project component or stage that were not addressed in the initial EIS.
For proposed projects such as highways, streets, pipelines, utility lines, or systems where the proposed project is related to a large existing or planned network, for which a governmental unit has determined environmental review is needed, the RGU shall treat the present proposal as the total proposal or select only some of the future elements for present consideration in the threshold determination and EIS. These selections must be logical in relation to the design of the total system or network and must not be made merely to divide a large system into exempted segments.
When review of the total of a project is separated under this subpart, the components or stages addressed in each EIS or supplement must include at least all components or stages for which permits or approvals are being sought from the RGU or other governmental units.
An RGU may prepare a single EIS for independent projects with potential cumulative environmental impacts on the same geographic area if the RGU determines that review can be accomplished in a more effective or efficient manner through a related actions EIS. A project must not be included in a related actions EIS if its inclusion would unreasonably delay review of the project compared to review of the project through an independent EIS.
13 SR 1437
August 20, 2018