The project’s environmental review process is currently in progress. The final environmental impact statement (FEIS) has been published in the Federal Register and is expected to be published in the State OEQC in July of 2016. The EIS addresses both state and federal requirements:
- Federal: National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA). (Reason for federal involvement: Need for an Incidental Take Permit (ITP) by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to address and mitigate impacts to threatened and endangered wildlife species).
- State: HRS Chapter 343, Hawaii Environmental Policy Act (HEPA). (Reason for state involvement: Project’s use of state lands).
The agencies that will accept the environmental impact statement (EIS) will be the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service for the NEPA process and the Hawaii State Department of Land and Natural Resources (DLNR) for the HEPA process.
Public scoping, the first step in both the NEPA and HEPA environmental review processes, has been completed. During the public scoping period, the public provided feedback on a variety of topics for both the NEPA and HEPA processes. Public comments have been addressed in the final Environmental Impact Statement.
Na Pua Makani worked with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS), DLNR, and the Division of Forestry and Wildlife (DOFAW) to prepare a Habitat Conservation Plan (HCP). Although the HCP is a separate document, it is related to the federal involvement in the project and the reason why Na Pua Makani is conducting an Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) under NEPA. In addition to impacts on fauna and flora, air and water quality, and noise, the EIS will address other issues and concerns expressed by the community, stakeholder groups and organizations.
Below is a list of the activities that have occurred thus far:
- The NEPA public scoping meeting was held on Nov. 13, 2013.
- The HEPA public scoping meeting was held on Jan. 10, 2014.
- Comments received at both meetings were addressed and incorporated into the joint HEPA/NEPA Draft Environmental Impact Statement (DEIS).
- A supplemental scoping meeting for the DEIS was held on November 18, 2014.
- The DEIS was published in the second quarter of 2015.
- The Final EIS was published in the Federal Register in July of 2016.