Environmental Review Toolkit
Accelerating Project Delivery

Step 4: Assess effects on conservation objectives
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The goals of Step 4 are:

  1. Create a regional-scale picture of potential and cumulative impacts on natural resources based on transportation scenarios.
  2. Agree on preferences regarding avoidance, minimization, potential conservation, and restoration investments to support selection of the best transportation plan scenario.
  3. Identify and quantify mitigation needs.

Assessing Impacts and Alternatives. The stakeholders evaluate the planning scenarios, jointly review and prioritize the affected resources, not unlike a project-level alternatives analysis, to optimize the transportation/infrastructure objectives and minimize adverse environmental impacts. The Science Team will play a significant role to quantify the important elements of the affected resources, conservation needs (including the “must avoid” core habitats, minimum habitat sizes, connectivity), and the potential impacts. The team may also identify and prioritize retrofitting sites. At this point, scenarios may be modified to avoid and minimize impacts. The level of avoidance and minimization that can be obtained and quantification of impacts will depend on the resolution of the data. The need for mitigation for unavoidable impacts can be identified, by type/resource, and the quantity approximated. The goal is to obtain an estimate of the total mitigation needs of the program by type.

Documentation. Document the process of avoidance and minimization, and quantifying impacts and mitigation requirements.

What is the difference between the terms “Regional Ecosystem Infrastructure Development Framework” (REIDF) and “Region Ecosystem Framework” (REF)?


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Step 1 -
Build and strengthen collaborative partnerships and vision
Step 2 -
Characterize resource status and integrate natural environment plans
Step 3 -
Create a regional ecosystem framework (conservation strategy + transportation plan)
Step 4 -
Assess effects on conservation objectives
Step 5 -
Establish and prioritize ecological actions
Step 6 -
Develop crediting strategy
Step 7 -
Develop programmatic consultation, biological opinion or permits
Step 8 -
Implement agreements, adaptive management, and delivery projects
Step 9 -
Update regional ecosystem framework and plan
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