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Environmental Review Process

NEPA is the primary law governing the environmental review process for all federal agencies. NEPA establishes a decision-making process that agencies must follow to study the environmental impacts of proposed projects, both large and small.

Environmental Review Roles and Responsibilities

Staff in FTA’s Regional Offices are responsible for managing the environmental review process for projects that receive financial assistance from FTA. This process includes ensuring compliance with NEPA and other relevant federal environmental laws, reviewing and approving environmental documents, and issuing decision documents.

The project sponsor, often a transit agency or a state or local government, is the co-lead agency with FTA and is responsible for completing many steps in the environmental review process, such as:

  • conducting technical studies
  • leading public involvement
  • preparing environmental documents

FTA’s Office of Environmental Policy and Programs, located in FTA’s Headquarters, supports FTA regional staff in project review and provides expertise on technical issues.

See the following pages for more detailed information related to FTA’s environmental review process: