On Jan. 9, ABC President and CEO Michael Bellaman and Miller and Long employees Alan Michael Jenkins and James Spencer Johnson joined President Trump at the White House for the announcement of the Council on Environmental Quality’s proposed rule to update its regulations for implementing the procedural provisions of the National Environmental Policy Act. NEPA has not been updated for more than four decades. The proposal would modernize and clarify the regulations to facilitate more efficient, effective and timely NEPA reviews by federal agencies in connection with proposals for agency action.
ABC supports the modernization of these critical regulations and believes that these enhancements will go a long way toward eliminating unnecessary delays that cause budget overruns in construction. Creating a coordinated, predictable and transparent process to streamline permitting will enable the industry to plan and execute even the most complex projects while safeguarding our communities, maintaining a healthy environment and being good stewards of public funds.
According to CEQ’s fact sheet, “the outdated regulations have slowed and impeded the development of needed infrastructure in communities across the nation. Environmental impact statements for federal highway projects have averaged over seven years to complete and many reviews have taken a decade or more.”
ABC is a member of the Unlock American Investment coalition, which said, “Updating NEPA will reduce delays hindering critical projects, resulting in better infrastructure, a stronger economy and continued environmental stewardship. Modernizing NEPA is the key to unblocking investments.” To learn more, see the coalition’s fact sheet.
The public may comment on the proposal until March 10. CEQ will host two public hearings in Denver on Feb. 11 and Washington, D.C on Feb. 25. Additional details concerning the hearings and other public engagement may be found here.