Section 97.13 - Criteria for determining what actions may have a significant effect on the environment

97.13 Criteria for determining what actions may have a significant effect on the environment.

(a) An action may have a significant effect on the environment if it can reasonably be expected to lead to one of the following consequences:

(1) a substantial adverse change to ambient air or water quality or noise levels or in solid waste production, drainage, erosion or flooding;

(2) the removal or destruction of large quantities of vegetation or fauna, the substantial interference with the movement of any resident or migratory fish or wildlife species, impacts on critical habitat areas, or the substantial affecting of a rare or endangered species of animal or plant or the habitat of such species;

(3) the encouraging or attracting of a large number of people to a place or places for more than a few days relative to the number of people who would come to such place absent the action;

(4) the creation of material conflict with a community's existing plans or goals as officially approved or adopted;

(5) the impairment of the character or quality of important historical, archeological, architectural or aesthetic resources or of existing community or neighborhood character;

(6) a major change in the use of either the quantity or type of energy;

(7) the creation of a hazard to human health or safety;

(8) a substantial change in the use, or intensity of use of land or other natural resources or in their capacity to support existing uses except where such a change has been included, referred to, or implicit, in a broad statement prepared pursuant to section 97.17 of this Part;

(9) the creation of a material demand for other actions which would result in one of the above consequences;

(10) changes in two or more elements of the environment, no one of which is substantial, but when taken together result in a material change in the environment; or

(11) two or more related actions no one of which has or would have a significant effect on the environment, but which cumulatively meet one or more of the criteria in this section.

(b) For the purpose of determining whether an action will cause one of the foregoing consequences, the action shall be deemed to include other contemporaneous or subsequent actions (1) which are included in any long-range comprehensive integrated plan of which the action under consideration is a part, (2) which are likely to be undertaken as a result thereof, or (3) which are dependent thereon. The significance of a likely consequence (i.e., whether it is material, substantial, large, important, etc.) should be assessed in connection with its setting (i.e., urban or rural), its probability of occurring, its duration, its irreversibility, its controllability, its geographic scope and its magnitude (i.e., degree of change or its absolute size).
 

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