NEPA has protected our most precious places for 50 years
09 January 2020 – President Donald Trump announced today that his administration plans to make changes to one of America’s bedrock environmental laws, the National Environmental Policy Act. Among other provisions, NEPA requires that federal agencies conduct environmental impact statements for proposed actions. Specifically, the administration aims to remove climate change from that process and narrow the range of products that would be required to undergo NEPA review.
Katie Murtha, vice president of federal government relations at Environment America, issued the following response:
“For 50 years, NEPA has quietly protected some of our most precious, environmentally sensitive places. It helps federal agencies minimize the environmental impact of the projects they oversee; it allows for public input into all planning efforts; and it established the Council on Environmental Quality — the first time there was a body within the Office of the President focused solely on the environment.
“Without these protections, our environment is put at greater risk because our government will no longer have to look before it leaps. These regulations serve as a key tool for assuring the federal government acts as a responsible trustee for future generations. NEPA is good policy, and it’s wrong to weaken it.”