The California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) is implicated in nearly every development project a governmental agency in California considers, whether a private development proposal or the agency’s own project. Because of the complexities, breadth of issues involved, and legal standard applied in CEQA matters, it is one of the most common ways for project approvals to be challenged.
RWG’s team of CEQA experts are well versed in navigating the complex CEQA process and have been advising clients on CEQA strategy and compliance since it was first enacted. We work with clients and environmental consultants to implement CEQA’s requirements and fulfill the Act’s policies of informing decision makers and the public of the environmental consequences of the projects under consideration. Through these collaborations, we assist clients in preparing documents that can discourage litigation and be defended in court in the event of a challenge. And, when our clients have concerns about the impacts of another agency’s project, we assist them in reviewing and commenting on CEQA documents to ensure that all impacts are identified and that all necessary mitigations are adopted.
Our CEQA team advises from initial project review to action on the project, and on into litigation, should that occur. We advise on the nuances of exemptions, negative declarations and mitigated negative declarations, environmental impact reports, noticing and procedural requirements, mitigation and alternatives, mitigation monitoring, subsequent environmental reviews, statements of overriding considerations, and, if necessary, litigation. We have detailed experience working through complex CEQA issues, including climate change and greenhouse gas emissions; cultural, historic, and tribal cultural resources; urban decay; traffic, and other impact topics. Through the CEQA process, we also assist public agencies in documenting the basis for mitigation measures to help ensure that proposed developments address impacts on the community.