Environmental Impacts Equal Level of Documentation
Projects that receive federal funding, approval, or permits (including much of ODOT’s program) must comply with the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA). NEPA compliance includes documenting environmental resources and avoiding, minimizing, and/or mitigating impacts on those resources.
Projects without significant environmental impacts are considered “Categorically Excluded” in accordance with 23 CFR 771.117. Approximately 99% of ODOT’s $2.4 billion program meets the Categorical Exclusion (CE) criteria. This means that most of ODOT’s projects do not individually or cumulatively have a significant environmental impact. ODOT’s NEPA CE Guidance defines five levels of CEs: C1 and C2 (projects that meet the criteria in 23 CFR 771.117(c) and typically do not require additional environmental documentation); and D1, D2, and D3 (projects that meet the criteria in 23 CFR 771.117(d), which require documentation to demonstrate they do not pose significant environmental impacts). The differences between CE levels is based on project type and environmental impacts.
ODOT’s CE Guidance also lays out the process for approving environmental documents. Projects with lower levels of impacts can be approved by ODOT district offices while those with higher levels of impacts (that still meet the CE criteria) are approved by the Office of Environmental Services (OES).
ODOT EnviroNet is an online documentation system for review, approval and storage of environmental documentation collected during the environmental engineering phase of a transportation project. All transportation projects require some documentation to ensure compliance with the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) which requires ODOT to assess the effects to the environment for transportation projects.
ODOT EnviroNet requires a signon and is a system accessed by ODOT partners. However, the public is welcome to view the final reports for ODOT projects from the Approved Environmental Documents site.
To learn more about EnviroNet or to access the system, click here.