Schedule & Review Process
Environmental Review Process
The National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) process is intended to identify and assess potential environmental consequences of a proposed activity before a decision on that proposed activity is made. The Surface Transportation Board’s (Board) Office of Environmental Analysis (OEA) is responsible for ensuring that the Board complies with NEPA and related Federal, state, and local environmental statutes.
Steps of the Environmental Review Process
- NOI (Notice of Intent) – November 12, 2021
- Scoping – November 2021 – January 2022
- Public Meetings - November 30 - December 9, 2021 [Meeting details]
- Scoping Comment Period – November 12, 2021 – January 3, 2022
- Final Scope of Study – February 18, 2022
- Draft EIS – Spring 2022
- Public Comment Period on Draft EIS including Public Meetings – Spring 2022
- Final EIS – Fall 2022
- Board's Decision on Acquisition
Note: Schedule subject to change as the project progresses. Please check back for current available information.
Notice of Intent (NOI)
The NOI is a document prepared by the Board that states the intent to prepare an Environmental Impact Statement (EIS). The NOI provides information about the next steps of the environmental review process, including scoping meetings. The NOI for this project was published November 12, 2021 and is available on the Documents page.
Scoping is an open process for determining the breadth of environmental issues to be addressed in the EIS. The scoping process includes public and agency meetings to provide the opportunity to share their interests and concerns. Members of the public and agencies can submit written comments to OEA during the scoping period. After the close of the comment period, OEA reviews all comments received and then issues a final scope of study for the EIS. The Final Scope of Study for the EIS was published February 18, 2022 and is available on the Documents page.
OEA will prepare a Draft EIS for the project. The Draft EIS addresses those environmental issues and concerns identified during the scoping process. It also contains OEA’s preliminary recommendations for environmental mitigation measures. Upon completion of the Draft EIS, the document is made available for public and agency review and comment for 45 days. Public meetings are held during this 45-day comment period to allow for further input.
OEA will prepare a Final EIS to address the comments on the Draft EIS from the public and agencies, and make revisions as needed.
Board's Decision on Acquisition
The Board will issue a final decision on the proposed acquisition that will take into account the entire record, including the environmental record. In making its final decision, the Board will consider the Draft EIS, the Final EIS, any public comments received, and OEA’s recommendations, including recommendations for potential environmental mitigation.