CEQ Seeks Comments on Changes to NEPA Regulations

The Council on Environmental Quality (CEQ) issued an Advance Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (ANPR) seeking public comments “on potential revisions to update the [NEPA] regulations and ensure a more efficient, timely, and effective NEPA process consistent with the national environmental policy stated in NEPA.” The deadline for comments is July 20, 2018.

CEQ seeks comments on 20 specific questions and also invites commenters to provide “specific recommendations on additions, deletions, and modifications to the text of CEQ’s NEPA regulations,” including their justifications, to update and clarify the regulations.

While there is no explicit discussion of climate change, it is possible that the administration will use the NEPA regulatory update to modify or limit the extent to which climate change-related considerations are addressed in NEPA review. The ANPR also provides an opportunity for commenters to let CEQ know if additional guidance is needed with respect to certain issues (e.g., the consideration of climate change in NEPA reviews).