CEQA and Publicly Sponsored Projects:

Vol. 36 No. 1

By

Katherine J. Hart is senior counsel at Abbott & Kindermann, LLP in Sacramento, California.

The California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA)1 was enacted by the California Legislature in 1970, one year after Congress enacted the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA).2 While often referred to as a “little NEPA,” CEQA is not purely procedural like NEPA and, in fact, contains a “substantive mandate” that public agencies avoid approving projects with significant environmental impacts when there are feasible alternatives or mitigation measures that can substantially lessen or avoid such impacts.3

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