Staff from the DNR study fish populations in the Mississippi River near Cassville as part of an EIS analysis.
- Contact information
- For information on DNR's environmental impact analysis, contact:
- Jim Pardee
Bureau of Environmental Analysis and Sustainability
Wisconsin Environmental Policy Act (WEPA)
The Wisconsin Environmental Policy Act (WEPA) is a state law designed to encourage environmentally sensitive decision-making by state agencies. This act applies only to state agencies. It does not apply to local governments or private parties unless their actions involve state agency regulation or funding.
Signed into law in 1972, WEPA spells out the state's environmental policy. This act also created Chapter 1.11, Wis. Stats. and requires the DNR and other state agencies to consider the environmental effects of their policies and actions. This act requires the DNR and other state agencies to gather relevant environmental information and consider it in their decision-making under their other statutory authorities. Agencies must also look at appropriate alternatives to the particular course of action they are proposing. The principle that broad citizen participation should be part of environmental decision-making was also established by WEPA.
The DNR's WEPA responsibilities are further described in Chapter NR 150, Wis. Adm. Code. Under NR 150, the DNR considers alternative approaches to broad issues and policies by means of strategic analyses. Individual projects having environmental concerns receive a detailed analysis as required by section 1.11, Wis. Stats. A detailed analysis that is part of another permit or approval process is called an integrated analysis. Some project action detailed analyses rely on a prior analysis. For other projects a separate environmental impact statement (or EIS) may be needed.
All environmental impact analyses receive public review and comment. Strategic analyses and environmental impact statements available for public comment can be found at Public review of environmental impact analysis documents.
While WEPA compliance is the responsibility of the entire DNR, the Bureau of Environmental Analysis and Sustainability (BEAS) is responsible for overall coordination of WEPA implementation within the agency. The following BEAS staff can answer questions on environmental impact analysis process, projects and documents.