The Army Strategy for the Environment

United States Environmental Protection Agency seal

The NEPA process ensures that environmental factors and mission-related components are considered in conjunction with technological, economic and appropriately involved in the decision-making process. Proper NEPA compliance and management ensures regulatory compliance, integrates effective environmental stewardship, and supports the compliance and prevention strategic goals and the customer management of the DPW Environmental Strategic Plan.

The National Environmental Policy
Act of 1969 (NEPA)

The National Environmental Policy Act of 1969 (NEPA) requires that all federal agencies consider and document the potential environmental effects associated with major federal actions, analyze all reasonable alternatives, and involve the public in its decision making. NEPA is primarily a tool for informed decision-making. As a federal agency, the Army must comply with the requirements of NEPA, its implementing regulations and other related statutes.

  • Categorical Exclusion (CX) – CX's are categories of actions that do not individually or cumulatively have a significant effect on the environment and for which neither an EA nor an EIS is required. In order to use a CX, an action must fall into one of the categories listed in 32 CFR Part 651, Appendix B and no extraordinary circumstances can exist.
  • Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) – An EIS is a detailed, objective analysis of the environmental consequences of a proposed action. It is required for any major action that has the potential to significantly affect the quality of the environment or is environmentally controversial. Army actions that would require an EIS would include a significant expansion of a military facility, extensive land acquisition, or major mission changes with the potential to cause significant environmental impacts.
  • Environmental Assessment (EA) – An EA is a document prepared to consider the extent of environmental impacts of a proposed action and is used to determine whether those impacts are significant. If the environmental impacts are determined not to be significant, then a Finding of No Significant Impact (FNSI) is prepared. Army actions normally requiring an EA include the development and implementation of natural and cultural resource management plans or any military construction exceeding five contiguous acres. A REC, which also can be used to document that an Army action has already received NEPA review, may be prepared for actions covered by an existing EA.

PREVIOUS SECTION: Environmental Division, Department of Public Works