The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) is preparing an Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) for the implementation of the plan for National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) – Endangered Species Act (ESA) Integration in Oregon. FEMA released a draft of this plan in October 2021.
FEMA is preparing the EIS in accordance with the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) of 1969; the President's Council on Environmental Quality (CEQ) regulations to implement NEPA (40 Code of Federal Regulations [CFR] Parts 1500 to 1508); Department of Homeland Security Instruction 023-01-001; and FEMA Instruction 108-01-1. FEMA will update this page as we proceed through the NEPA process.
In response to a lawsuit brought against FEMA, FEMA initiated consultation with the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) pursuant to Section 7 of the Endangered Species Act (ESA). NMFS requires FEMA make several changes to how the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) is implemented in Oregon to avoid continued jeopardy for the threatened and endangered species and habitat described in the Biological Opinion (BiOp).
The proposed action that FEMA will evaluate in the EIS is the execution of the Oregon Implementation Plan for NFIP-ESA Integration, developed by FEMA with input from the State of Oregon and public stakeholders between 2016 and 2021. The draft plan comprises changes to information provided to communities, mapping products, and reporting requirements for NFIP-participating communities as well as a range of potential measures communities will need to select from to collectively meet a “no net loss” standard of three key natural floodplain functions: flood storage, water quality, and riparian vegetation.
Proposed Action Area
The proposed action area is defined by the boundaries of six NOAA Salmon and Steelhead Recovery Domains within the State of Oregon: Oregon Coast, Southern Oregon/Northern California Coast, Willamette River, Lower Columbia River, Middle Columbia River, and Snake River. NOAA has mapped these Recovery Domains.
There is a help / instruction panel on the right side of the NOAA map.
Activate the layers in the top bar, left of the location entry field. Ensure that the Salmon and Steelhead Recovery Domains is toggled on. To determine whether your location is within one of the domains, please use the ESRI World Geocoder location search box.
Within these recovery domains, the proposed action applies to communities that are participating in the NFIP. However, since participation is voluntary and a community may join or leave the program, this EIS applies to both current and future NFIP communities. Information about the NFIP in Oregon is available through the Oregon Department of Land Conservation and Development.
For a proposed development activity to be subject to the new requirements, it must be proposed in a location subject to the minimum standards of the NFIP, which means that, at the time the activity is proposed, it is 1) within the geographic jurisdiction of a community that participates in the NFIP, and 2) it is within the mapped special flood hazard area (SFHA). Access the FEMA Flood Map Service Center to determine if a property is in the current effective SHFA.
FEMA initially published a Notice of Intent (NOI) to prepare an EIS on March 6, 2023 which opened a 60 day public scoping process. On May 25, 2023 the public comment period was re-opened for an additional 32 days for comment opportunity and to schedule additional outreach events.
FEMA is soliciting public comments regarding the range of issues, information, and analyses relevant to the proposed action, including potential environmental impacts and reasonable alternatives to address in the EIS. The comment period will be open through June 26, 2023.
FEMA is requesting public input during the Scoping Period. Your input should be as specific as possible to ensure that the information you submit is understood and your concerns are addressed.
FEMA will be hosting virtual and in-person public meetings to solicit comments regarding the Proposed Action and the environmental issues that FEMA should consider in the EIS.
Additional in person meetings will be held soon, and details will be updated as they are confirmed.