Under What Circumstances Should Federal Environmental Assessment Be Required?Submitted By: Stephanie Taylor December 17, 2016
Since 1972, EA has evolved into the current CEAA 2012, by reducing requirements through streamlining. The 2012 repeal drastically reduced the number of projects required to undergo an EA. Many projects which are no longer required to undergo screening still have known adverse effects. The previous version, CEAA 1995, obliged nearly all projects to be screened. This system allowed for tiered decision-making, focus on cumulative impacts, and an overall integrative framework. We believe that once CEAA has been returned to pre-2012 changes, through the removal of the regulatory list, and updating the definitions of project, federal jurisdiction, and environment will broaden the EA process to include more factors and include all potential environmental effects. Improving upon CEAA 2012 will reduce variability, discretion and adverse environmental effects by encompassing all factors, through once again, screening the majority of projects.
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