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Elements of the Environment

The following is a comprehensive list of elements of the environment that are authorized by the State Environmental Policy Act (SEPA) for potential analysis in an environmental impact statement (EIS). The first major step in the EIS process is Scoping. The intent of Scoping is to create a concise EIS that only addresses the key environmental issues. The purpose of scoping, as outlined in the SEPA regulations, is to narrow the focus of the EIS to just address "probable significant adverse impacts and reasonable alternatives."1 Preliminary review of the North/East Cities Regional Municipal Jail proposal and alternatives indicates that those environmental elements highlighted below could be considered for analysis in the Draft EIS. After reviewing comments received during Scoping, the Lead Agency will determine the final scope of the EIS.

Environmental Element

Specific Topic


Geology Soils Topography Unique physical features Erosion/enlargement of land area (accretion)


Air quality Odor Climate


Surface water movement/quantity/quality Runoff/absorption Floods Groundwater movement--quantity/quality Public water supplies

Plants and Animals

Habitat for/numbers of/diversity of species (i.e., plants, fish, other wildlife) Unique species Fish or wildlife migration routes

Energy and Natural Resources

Amount required/rate of use/efficiency [Greenhouse Gas Emissions] Source/availability Non-renewable resources Conservation and renewable resources Scenic resources


WAC 197-11-408


Environmental Element

Specific Topic

Environmental Health

Noise Risk of explosion Releases or potential releases to the environment affecting public health (i.e., toxic or hazardous materials)

Land and Shoreline Use Population and Housing Light and Glare

Land use patterns Relationship to existing land use plans, policies, and regulations

Population Housing

Light Glare

Aesthetics Recreation Historic & Cultural Preservation Agricultural Crops

Aesthetics [Views]


Historic resources Cultural resources

Agricultural crops


Transportation systems Vehicular trips Waterborne, rail, and air traffic Parking Movement/circulation of people or goods Traffic hazards

Public Services and Utilities

Fire Police Schools Parks or other recreational facilities Maintenance Communications Water Stormwater Sewer Solid waste Other governmental services or utilities



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