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Notice of proposed rulemaking and public hearing

The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE or the Department) proposes to amend its existing regulations governing compliance with the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA). The majority of the changes are proposed for the categorical exclusions provisions contained in its NEPA Implementing Procedures, with a small number of related changes proposed for other provisions. These proposed changes are intended to better align the Department’s regulations, particularly its categorical exclusions, with DOE’s current activities and recent experiences, and to update the provisions with respect to current technologies and regulatory requirements. DOE proposes to establish 20 new categorical exclusions, and to remove two categorical exclusion categories, one environmental assessment (EA) category, and two environmental impact statement (EIS) categories. Other proposed changes modify and clarify DOE’s existing provisions.