Environmental Review Process
WAPA and SMUD are preparing a joint Environmental Impact Statement/Environmental Impact Report (EIS/EIR) pursuant to the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) and California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA), respectively. WAPA is the lead federal agency under NEPA and SMUD is the lead agency under CEQA. The EIS/EIR will examine construction of the CoSu Line, any modifications to WAPA's and/or SMUD's existing facilities to accommodate the new line, and SMUD's action to fund the proposed project.
The project underwent two public scoping periods to receive public comments on issues and concerns to be considered in the environmental analysis. The first scoping period was held from December 18, 2015, to April 18, 2016, and the second took place between January 6 and March 21, 2017. WAPA and SMUD considered every public comment received, including comments about project alternatives. The agencies prepared a scoping summary report that includes public comments from both scoping periods. The information in the scoping report is informing the analysis of the Draft EIS/EIR.
One of the first steps in preparing the Draft EIS/EIR is developing a reasonable range of alternatives, including a "No Action" alternative, and then analyzing the effects of the alternatives. WAPA and SMUD are examining alternatives for the transmission line routes and substation locations within the Northern Corridor and Segment 1 Alternative Study Areas only, and conducting studies in this area. The agencies contacted landowners in fall 2017 to request temporary right-of-entry to perform studies needed for the Draft EIS/EIR analysis.
No final decisions will be made regarding going forward with the CoSu Line until completion of the NEPA and CEQA process. See the timeline below for the schedule for developing the Draft EIS/EIR.