The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) within the Department of Energy has jurisdiction over interstate transmission of natural gas including liquefied natural gas (LNG) terminals and hydropower facilities. FERC issues a certificate or license for natural gas or hydropower project respectively to construct and operate a facility. Before issuing a certificate or license, FERC requires an economic and environmental analyses to determine if the project is in the public’s interest. FERC will prepare an Environmental Assessment (EA) or an Environmental Impact Statement (EIS), depending on the complexity of the project, as required for compliance with the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA). FERC has a voluntary program that allows applicants seeking certificates or licenses to engage a third-party contractor to assist the Commission in meeting its responsibilities under NEPA. Under the program, the contractor prepares an Environmental Report consisting of 13 Resource Reports as follows:
- Resource Report 1 - General Project Description
- Resource Report 2 - Water Use and Quality
- Resource Report 3 - Fish, Wildlife, and Vegetation
- Resource Report 4 - Cultural Resources
- Resource Report 5 - Socioeconomics
- Resource Report 6 - Geological Resources
- Resource Report 7 - Soils
- Resource Report 8 - Land Use, Recreation and Aesthetics
- Resource Report 9 - Air and Noise Quality
- Resource Report 10 - Alternatives
- Resource Report 11 - Reliability and Safety
- Resource Report 12 - PCB Contamination
- Resource Report 13 - Engineering and Design Material
The purpose of the consolidated Environmental Report is to meet the technical content requirements for each Resource Report that will allow FERC to efficiently review an application and accelerate the overall review process. By contracting the preparation of the Environmental Report, companies retain greater control over the analyses and the timeframe. In recent months, there has been a high level of scrutiny from FERC and other agencies regarding the noise and air dispersion modeling analyses associated with RR 9.
Trinity Consultants is uniquely qualified to assist any facility with preparing an Environmental Report with expertise in air quality for more than 40 years. Resource Report 9 has become a complex and significant part of the Environmental Report requiring extensive air and noise impact analyses including complex air dispersion modeling and noise surveys and computational noise impacts. These analyses must be completed for both the construction and post construction operations. Please contact your local Trinity office at (800) 229-6655 for FERC Environmental Report assistance.