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Environmental Law News: Protecting California’s Disadvantaged Communities – An Examination of How the State’s New Environmental Justice Laws May Affect the CEQA Entitlement Process

Fall 2018 – Environmental Law News, a publication of the Environmental Law Section of California Lawyers Association: Protecting California’s Disadvantaged Communities – An Examination of How the State’s New Environmental Justice Laws May Affect the CEQA Entitlement Process

JMBM land use lawyer Martin P. Stratte and San Bernardino County Geologist George H. Kenline wrote the article “Protecting California’s Disadvantaged Communities – An Examination of How the State’s New Environmental Justice Laws May Affect the CEQA Entitlement Process” for the Environmental Law News, a publication of the Environmental Law Section of California Lawyers Association.

“According to the Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assesment’s Calenviroscreen tool, more than 9 million Californians are exposed to and at risk from high pollution. Many of the Californians impacted by high pollution reside in disadvantaged communities. In an effort to reduce the impacts of pollution on these communities, the state as enacted new “environmental justice” legislation – Senate Bill 1000 (SB 1000) and Assembly Bill 617 (AB 617). Although SB 1000 and AB 617 are separate and distinct legislation, the laws are both intended to protect disadvantaged communities. Accordingly, the laws have the potential to work hand-in-hand in practice and may also have significant implications on the entitlement of development projects in accordance with the California Environmental Quality Act (“CEQA”). This article will examine some of those potential implications and related questions, such as how lead agencies will substantiate the approval of future projects that will cause significant and unavoidable impacts in disadvantaged communities, yet also demonstrate compliance with applicable environmental justice policies and solutions.” Read the full article here.

 

Reprinted with permission by the California Lawyers Association.