Environmental Review Process
In order to comply with the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) and other applicable environmental requirements, all proposed actions undertaken by Rural Development in all program areas, are required to complete an environmental review process. The applicable RD regulations for each program are:
1940-G for Housing Program and Busienss and Cooperative Program except Empowerment Zones/Enterrprise Communities (EZ/EC).
1794 for Utilities Program and Empowerment Zones/Enterprise communities (EZ/EC)
Applicants at the earliest possible time shall provide sufficient information, for RD to determine the type of environmental review to be conducted. Rural Development will work with the applicant to obtain comments and reviews from other agencies when required and prepare Categorical Exclusions. Categorical exclusions without an Environmental Report, Class I and Class II assessements as appropriate. Additional Information using Form RD 1940-20 and attachments will be obtained from the applicant to complete Class I and Class II assessments, under 1940-G. An Environmental Report (ER) will need to be prepared by the applicant's consultant in case of Categorical Exculsions with ER and Environmental Assessments, under 1794.
Agencies got together and developed a Uniform Environmental Review (UER) process to eliminate conflicts adn save time in preparing multiple documents udner dfiferent agencies' criteria. The ER prepared under the Uniform Environmental Review process is acceptable to EPA, DEP, PENNVEST< DCED, RUS (RD) and HUD. Additional information on the UER is available at the following websites Uniform Environmental Review Process and Department of Environmental Protection and refer to DEP Document ID: 381-5511-111. The "Resources" listed on the Environmental Page will be helpful to develop a stand alone UER Report.
The Natural Resources Management Guide can be helpful to identify the environmental factors to be addressed, the agencies to be contacted and the process for addressing each potential environmental impact.
For further assistance contact the RD Area Specialist for the specific program.
Natural Resources Management Guide
Conducting Environmental Reviews Memo
Uniform Environmental Review Process
Programmatic Agreement with SHPO
Sole Source Aquifer Memo (07/10/1985 Memo of Understanding)
PA PN 291-Filing Environmental Review Documents
If you have any questions about the proper use of these documents, please contact the Rural Development Pennsylvania State Environmental Coordinator:
Kelly Herzog, SEC