ESA is pleased to sponsor, present, and attend this year’s AEP California State Conference in Anaheim California from March 24 – 27. You won’t want to miss our scheduled presentations and panels, where ESA’s specialists will discuss the latest regulatory updates, and statewide efforts to streamline CEQA and environmental permitting processes—pertaining to restoration projects, climate goals, and much more.

ESA’s team of environmental planners and permitting specialists will be attending the conference this year and we look forward to connecting with you.

Brian Allee

Environmental Planner

Brian Schuster

Air Quality and Acoustics Program Director

Dan Swenson, DEnv

Regulatory Permitting Specialist

David Crook

Principal Planner

Eli Davidian, AICP, LEED AP

Senior Project Manager

Hayley Ward

Environmental Planner

Luci Hise-Fisher

Senior Environmental Planner

Meghan Gibson

Principal Planner

Meredith Parkin, JD, PMP

Senior Program Manager

Michael Houlihan

Principal Associate

Mike Harden

Principal Planner

Selena Whitney, AICP

Senior Energy Planner

Tamseel Mir

Southern California Community Development Director

Jill Sunahara

Northern California Biological Resources and Land Management Director

May Lau

Permitting Program Manager

Eryn Brennan

Environmental Planning Director

We’ll be presenting at the following workshop and sessions

Air Quality and Climate Change Workshop
Sunday, March 24 | 1:00pm – 4:45pm
Panelist: Brian Schuster

In this half-day workshop, representatives from environmental firms and the South Coast Air Quality Management District will discuss the latest methods and thresholds related to CEQA/NEPA analysis of air quality, GHG emissions, and climate change, and the impacts to environmental justice communities. The workshop will also provide an overview of climate risk and environmental justice modules of the CalEEMod program, and the latest legislation and case law involving CEQA analysis of projects, Climate Action Plans, and General Plans.

Green Tape Gets a Snip: CEQA Compliance for Restoration Projects
Monday, March 25 | 10:45am – 12:15pm
Moderator: May Lau, Panelists: Jill Sunahara and Meredith Parkin

This presentation will provide an overview of the meaningful changes to California’s permitting process as part of the state’s “Cutting Green Tape Initiative.” The panel will discuss how the program works to streamline the CEQA and regulatory approval process, and accelerate restoration projects in California, and how project proponents can access exemptions and other CEQA documents to help streamline the permitting and CEQA compliance process for their restoration projects.

How Best to Craft and Use a Climate Action Plan for CEQA Streamlining
Tuesday, March 26 | 9:00am – 10:30am
Panelist: Brian Schuster

This session will discuss how agencies and consultants can use streamlining mechanisms for greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions analyses, and outline guidelines for how climate action plan (CAP) should be crafted to allow for streamlining while reducing GHG emissions and achieving other climate goals.

How Adjacent is Adjacent? An Update on the Definition of Waters of the U.S.
Tuesday, March 26 | 3:30pm – 5:00 pm
Presenter: Daniel Swenson

Together with U.S. Army Corps of Engineers agency staff, the panel will cover the latest updates on the United States (WOTUS) regulatory definition, as well as effects on policy and practice, including tips for wetland delineation practitioners, permit specialists, and NEPA and CEQA preparers. It will also detail how the Supreme Court’s decision Sackett v. EPA will have major implications for wetlands and other types of aquatic features such as ephemeral streams and rivers.

Greenhouse Gas Thresholds: Warehouse Best Management Practices
Tuesday, March 26 | 3:30pm – 5pm
Panelist: Brian Schuster

This session will cover the latest updates to Best Management Practices (BMPs), which have emerged as a viable qualitative to assess Greenhouse Gas emission thresholds. The panel will also share what is needed to make the threshold more tailored to specific land uses and more useful for CEQA purposes, including warehouse BMPs.