New U.S. DOT Policy Limits Page Length of Environmental Impact Statements

The U.S. Department of Transportation is following through President Trump's promises to ease the federal government's permitting and approvals processes for infrastructure projects.

1 minute read

August 25, 2019, 5:00 AM PDT

By James Brasuell @CasualBrasuell

St. Paul, Minnesota

Joe Ferrer / Shutterstock

Sam Mintz reports that the U.S. Department of Transportation is publishing two new interim policies on environmental reviews for infrastructure projects.

"The first [pdf] says sub-agencies should limit the text of draft and final environmental impact statements to 150 pages, unless they're 'of an unusual scope or complexity.' It also recommends environmental assessments not be more than 75 pages," according to Mintz.

"The second [pdf] policy gives guidance on implementing President Donald Trump's One Federal Decision executive order, which mandates that major projects have one lead federal agency guiding the environmental review and authorization process," adds Mintz.

The interim policies follow up on a promise made by President Trump during his first State of the Union Address in January 2018. All of the Trump administration's cabinet secretaries signed a pledge in April 2018 to speed up permitting, including Secretary Elaine Chao at the U.S. Department of Transportation.

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