Council on Environmental Quality’s Proposed Phase 2 Regulations Modifying the National Environmental Policy Act Are Open for Comment

August/September 2023

Environmental, Energy & Climate Change Law and Regulation Reporter, Volume 3, Number 11

On the last day of July, 2023, the White House Council on Environmental Quality (CEQ) released its highly anticipated Phase 2 proposed rule (Phase 2 Regulations) that CEQ claims will “modernize and accelerate” environmental review under the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA). Congress enacted NEPA in 1969 to ensure that federal decision-making took into account the environmental effects of proposed federal actions and considered reasonable alternatives before the proposed action is undertaken. By statute, NEPA created CEQ to be the agency responsible for implementing NEPA. In recent years, and over changing presidential administrations, CEQ has made several changes to NEPA’s implementing regulations. Specifically, the Biden Administration has taken a phased approach to implementing priority changes to NEPA that focus on targeting changes made to NEPA in 2020 under the Trump Administration (2020 Rule).

Subscribers to the Environmental, Energy & Climate Change Law and Regulation Reporter can read the full article here.