Chapter 15: Managing People’s Environmental Impact
Chapter 15: Managing People’s Environmental Impact GEOL 1005
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This 3 page Class Notes was uploaded by Kerrigan Unter on Monday October 19, 2015. The Class Notes belongs to GEOL 1005 at George Washington University taught by Brown, C in Summer 2015. Since its upload, it has received 29 views. For similar materials see Environmental Geology in Geology at George Washington University.
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Date Created: 10/19/15
GEOL 1005 Chapter 15 Managing People s Environmental Impact 15 Environmental Policy Policy encompasses both specific plans of action and principles that guide future decisions National Environmental Policy Act NEPA federal statute that requires all federal agencies to further a national policy to promote efforts which will prevent or eliminate damage to the environment and biosphere and enrich the understanding of the ecological systems and natural resources important to the Nation It also established a Council on Environmental Quality The act can be applied to any project federal state or local that involves federal funding or work performed by the federal government and requires EISs for such projects Environmental Impact Statement EIS document that must be publicly filed when the federal government takes a major Federal action signi cantly affection the quality of the human environment It comprehensively examines the environmental and human impacts that action may have Stakeholder anyone interested in or affected by an action Clean Air Act CAA federal statute to protect air quality in the US it regulates activities that have the potential to cause everything from acid rain to stratospheric ozone depletion and carbon dioxide emissions It authorizes national air quality standards and an emissions permitting system Clean Water Act CWA federal statute to protect surface water quality in the US it defines a variety of ways to reduce direct pollutant discharges into waterways finance municipal wastewater treatment facilities and manage polluted runoff National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System NPDES permit program established by the Clean Water Act that controls water pollution by regulating point sources that discharge pollutants into waters of the US Resource Conservation and Recovery Act RCRA federal statute that establishes policies that cover the generation storage transport and disposal of solid and hazardous waste RCRA s goals Protect human health and the environment from the potential hazards of waste disposal Conserve energy and natural resources Reduce the amount of waste generated Ensure the wastes are managed in a environmentally sound manner Leachate liquid formed by leaching Comprehensive Environmental Response Compensation and Liability Act CERCLA federal statute that authorizes the federal government to respond to releases of hazardous substances from closed and abandoned sites provides ways to allocate liability for these releases and establishes a trust fund to clean up Commonly called Superfund National Priority List NPL list of hazardous waste sites recognized as a priority for continued study and potential cleanup under CERCLA Potentially Responsible Party PRP any individual company or other party potentially liable for payment of CERCLA cleanup costs including companies that generate hazardous substances disposed of at a CERCLA site current and former owners and operators of the site and transporters who selected the site for disposal of hazardous substances State Environmental Policy Act SEPA state statute modeled after NEPA that requires state and local agencies to consider the likely environmental consequences of proposed action before approving or denying it 152 Environmental Regulation Air water and soil quality standards Six pollutants are used to define and measure air quality carbon monoxide lead nitrogen dioxide particulate matter ozone and sulfur oxides The pollutants fall into several categories such as heavy metals and VOCs Total maximum daily load TMDL amount of pollutant that a water body can receive without exceeding its water quality standard Maximum contaminant level MCL highest level of a contaminant that is allowed in drinking water Generic soil screening levels concentration of a particular chemical in a soil that signals when further analysis of the risk to people is indicated Action levels concentration of a contaminants in soils that indicates a cleanup action is required Permits written permission from an agency to conduct an operation or action specifically define how the action will be undertaken hot it will be monitored and reported and in many cases how it will be completed 153 Thirdparty Litigation Many environmental groups believe that resource development on public lands should not occur and they proactively use the legal system to oppose regulatory decisions that approve exploration or development projects 154 Economics and Environmental Management In situ uranium leaching Recycling consumer electronics Landfill energy Ecotourism Cap and Trade Program creates a financial incentive or emissions reductions by assigning a cost to pollution the rights to emit defined amounts of pollutants are bought and sold 155 Decision Making Opposition to new industrial or resource development projects even landfills is common in the United States