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Environmental Assessment Process

EA NEPA process flow chart - thumb nail 
NEPA Process Flow Chart - click image to enlarge.

An Environmental Assessment (EA) is prepared when the impact of a proposed project on the environment is not clearly understood.  The EA describes the extent and level of environmental impact.  The document will either support a Finding of No Significant Impact (FONSI) or indicate that an Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) is warranted.

The information on this page is designed for a technical audience.

Chapter 400 of the Environmental Manual (EM) describes policies that must be considered when completing an EA.

Pre-Scoping

Document Impacts 

Document Review and Inviting Comments

Adopting NEPA Documents Under SEPA Rules

As a matter of practice, Project Teams should complete the NEPA and SEPA environmental review process simultaneously in a single document. When a NEPA document is completed without considering SEPA, that NEPA EA/EIS can be adopted using the form found in WAC 197-11-965 . The form/determination notice is signed according to agency SEPA delegations: the ESO Director signs an EIS/EA, the Region/Mode Environmental Manager signs a DNS.

Document Basics

EA Resources