December 28 2018
2018 has been a year to celebrate at 3e – we hit our 20th year in business this summer! To honor this achievement, we gathered at Montfair Resort Farm in Crozet, Virginia for good food, beautiful scenery, and great company. All of us at 3e are excited about continuing our success and serving our clients in the years to come. Here’s to many more!
December 18 2018
3e would like to congratulate Sharon Harless for becoming a Certified Hazardous Materials Manager! Sharon is Senior Vice President of 3e and is a principal owner of the firm. Sharon has 30+ years of experience in consulting and regulatory compliance and is a former EPA Region III RCRA Corrective Action Project Manager. When she's not serving our clients or managing the company, she finds time for professional development! Way to go, Sharon!
November 09 2018
The Virginia Department of Environmental Quality (VDEQ) has two Stormwater Program permits currently available for public comment: the Industrial General Permit (9 VAC25-870-151) and the Construction General Permit (9 VAC25-870-880). The comment period ends on 12/28/18 for both. Links for commenting are provided below.
Industrial General Permit: http://townhall.virginia.gov/l/ViewXML.cfm?textid=12951
Construction General Permit: http://townhall.virginia.gov/L/ViewXML.cfm?textid=12950
In addition, VDEQ’s 2018-2023 MS4 General Permit is now final with an effective date of 11/01/18 and is posted here https://law.lis.virginia.gov/admincodeexpand/title9/agency25/chapter890.
3e’s Water Resources group is tracking all updates and can help navigate the permitting process and what it may mean for our clients.
September 22 2018
Changes could be coming to the NEPA process. On June 20, 2018, the Council on Environmental Quality (CEQ) requested public comments on "potential revisions to update the regulations and ensure a more efficient, timely, and effective NEPA process” (https://ceq.doe.gov/laws-regulations/regulations.html) with a notice in the Federal Register (83 FR 28591). In response, the NEPA community, including our NEPA specialists here at 3e, is discussing the most effective ways to streamline a process that can take months to years and whether CEQ will overhaul its guidance in response to comments.
For many larger projects across nearly all Federal agencies, NEPA documents have become long and cumbersome to wade through, especially for the general public that is looking for a basic and simple understanding of the potential effects of a Federal action. 3e has noticed that nearly all our Federal clients are sincerely focused on streamlining the process to reduce NEPA timelines and the length of NEPA documents.
One suggestion is for agencies to adopt a broader range of actions that qualify as Categorical Exclusions, which are by nature smaller documents than Environmental Assessments or Environmental Impact Statements. The comment period closed on August 30, 2018 and CEQ is currently reviewing public comments. 3e will be following this topic and help our clients understand and implement any changes in CEQ’s NEPA guidance.
November 27 2017
3e is helping to keep streams clean through our work with private landowners, the Hanover-Caroline Soil and Water Conservation District (SWCD), and the Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS). We prepared an Agricultural Conservation Plan, including design of exclusion fencing, stream crossings, and other infrastructure aimed at improving water quality on a farm in central Virginia. The project will:
-reestablish riparian buffers by installing new exclusion fence to keep cows out of riparian areas;
-improve water quality by keeping cows from excreting waste directly into the stream; and
-minimize streambank and streambed erosion by constructing new crossings for cattle to cross streams
-minimize travel surface erosion by consolidating trails and establishing a fenced hardened walking trail
Because the landowner and SWCD will receive cost reimbursements from the NRCS, 3e also assisted by preparing a cultural resources evaluation and coordinating with the Virginia Department of Historic Resources for the project to comply with Section 106 of the National Historic Preservation Act. This project, including the design, was funded by a grant from the Virginia Agricultural BMP Cost-Share Program to enhance water quality in the State.