NEPA modernization would accelerate infrastructure projects, tweak reviews

The Trump Administration is issuing a final rule to modernize and accelerate environmental reviews under the National Environmental Policy Act.

President Trump says streamlining infrastructure approvals will further expand America’s unprecedented economic boom by allowing infrastructure to be built in a timely, efficient, and affordable manner.

A release from the White House says the environmental review process is burdensome for Federal agencies conducting reviews and Americans seeking permits or approvals.

The rule will establish a two-year limit for completion of environmental impact statements and a one-year limit for completion of environmental assessments. It would also impose page limits.

The Agricultural Retailers Association supports the final rule. ARA President and CEO Daren Coppock says it will speed up the approval process for much-needed infrastructure projects and benefit rural communities.

The Fertilizer Institute applauded the move to modernize the National Environmental Policy Act. President and CEO Corey Rosenbusch says the long overdue changes will improve efficiency of the permitting process and ensure continued environmental protection.

National Cattlemen’s Beef Association President Marty Smith says the modernized rule brings common sense back to a rule that was established to protect land and water. He says the changes will ensure NEPA does not delay good management practices.

Many environmentalists are not pleased.

Gina McCarthy, president and CEO of the Natural Resources Defense Council says it is an attempt to sideline people and make it easier for industry to pollute communities.

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