Environmental issues play a major role in the planning, design, construction, and reha-
bilitation of highways. Indeed, their prominence has grown as the public has become

increasingly informed on environmental issues and associated requirements. This chap-
ter provides an overview to lend guidance in understanding environmental issues, and

information to aid in the process of effectively addressing the various requirements in

this area. It begins with an overall review of the numerous federal laws and regula-
tions that must be considered. A thorough discussion is provided of the requirements

of the National Environmental Policy Act and the preparation of environmental impact
statements. Information is presented on the important topics of storm water pollution
prevention and lead-based paint removal and containment. The chapter concludes with
a discussion of resource recovery and the use of waste material, including the recycling
of hazardous wastes.

Federal environmental laws and regulations may affect planning, design, construction,
and rehabilitation of the infrastructure. The objective of environmental legislation is to
protect the health and welfare of the general public. Primary legislation has been
developed by the federal government, and the authority for implementing the laws has
been given to various federal agencies. State-level environmental legislation has, in
general, followed or expanded upon federal objectives and programs. Increasingly,
states are being given powers to implement federal programs. This has led to further
state involvement in promulgating laws, regulations, and judicial interpretations.
Federal legislation, and, therefore, requirements for compliance, have been steadily


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