May 2021 - Parks & Recreation - 31

decision on a consideration of the relevant factors, and
provided a convincing statement of reasons to explain
why a project's impacts are insignificant. "
While conducting a " searching and careful " judicial
review, the federal appeals court acknowledged that
such review was " nevertheless, narrowly circumscribed,
and we cannot substitute our own judgment for that of
the agency. " In particular, the federal appeals court was
mindful that federal judges " are not a panel of scientists
that instructs the agency how to validate its hypotheses,
chooses among scientific studies, or orders the agency to
explain every possible scientific uncertainty. "
Applying this appropriate APA standard of judicial
review to the revised Caltrans EA/FONSI at issue, the
federal appeals court had to determine whether Caltrans had considered the relevant factors and provided
a convincing statement of reasons to support its FONSI for the highway widening project. In so doing, the
appeals court would consider whether Caltrans' explanation was reasonable or arbitrary and capricious with
regard to the following relevant factors: redwood tree
suffocation, root zones construction, traffic noise/volume and collision with trees.

Root Zones Construction
Similarly, the federal appeals court found that " Caltrans
appropriately considered the extent and effect of the construction activity that would occur in the structural root
zones of redwood trees, including construction guidelines
in a State Parks handbook. " In the opinion of the court:
" The record plainly belies Bair's contention that Caltrans
failed to consider the effects of construction. "
As characterized by the federal appeals court, " the
record is replete with Caltrans' comprehensive analyses of the extent and effects of construction activity in
the root zones of individual trees. " Moreover, the court
found " the sentence in State Parks' handbook that recommended that no construction should take place in
the structural root zone of a protected tree " did not necessarily apply to " the affected redwoods or influenced
State Parks' opinion of the Project. " Regardless, the federal appeals court acknowledged that Caltrans was not
obligated to defer to or adopt the opinion of State Parks
regarding the environmental impacts of the Project.
According to the court, " NEPA anticipates that the

Redwood Tree Suffocation
In the opinion of the federal appeals court, " Caltrans
sufficiently considered the effect of paving over portions of tree root zones. " In particular, the appeals
court found arborist Yniguez and Caltrans had " thoroughly assessed the amount of paving that would be
placed over the root zone of each tree " :
Yniguez specifically relied in part upon Caltrans' selection of permeable material, the minor and limited areas of new asphalt, and Caltrans' decision to narrow the
proposed roadway shoulders where possible in reaching
his conclusion that the Project would not create extreme
stress in the redwoods or overwhelm their natural resilience.
As a result, the appeals court held this agency decision was not arbitrary and capricious. On the contrary, the court found Caltrans had " considered the
possibility that paving could harm the trees, but simply (and reasonably) concluded that there was sufficient evidence to the contrary. " The federal appeals
court, therefore, concluded: " The district court erred
in concluding that the EA failed to adequately consider the effects of paving over portions of the root zones
of certain trees. "
	

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May 2021 - Parks & Recreation

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of May 2021 - Parks & Recreation

May 2021 - Parks & Recreation - Intro
May 2021 - Parks & Recreation - Cover1
May 2021 - Parks & Recreation - Cover2
May 2021 - Parks & Recreation - 1
May 2021 - Parks & Recreation - 2
May 2021 - Parks & Recreation - 3
May 2021 - Parks & Recreation - 4
May 2021 - Parks & Recreation - 5
May 2021 - Parks & Recreation - 6
May 2021 - Parks & Recreation - 7
May 2021 - Parks & Recreation - 8
May 2021 - Parks & Recreation - 9
May 2021 - Parks & Recreation - 10
May 2021 - Parks & Recreation - 11
May 2021 - Parks & Recreation - 12
May 2021 - Parks & Recreation - 13
May 2021 - Parks & Recreation - 14
May 2021 - Parks & Recreation - 15
May 2021 - Parks & Recreation - 16
May 2021 - Parks & Recreation - 17
May 2021 - Parks & Recreation - 18
May 2021 - Parks & Recreation - 19
May 2021 - Parks & Recreation - 20
May 2021 - Parks & Recreation - 21
May 2021 - Parks & Recreation - 22
May 2021 - Parks & Recreation - 23
May 2021 - Parks & Recreation - 24
May 2021 - Parks & Recreation - 25
May 2021 - Parks & Recreation - 26
May 2021 - Parks & Recreation - 27
May 2021 - Parks & Recreation - 28
May 2021 - Parks & Recreation - 29
May 2021 - Parks & Recreation - 30
May 2021 - Parks & Recreation - 31
May 2021 - Parks & Recreation - 32
May 2021 - Parks & Recreation - 33
May 2021 - Parks & Recreation - 34
May 2021 - Parks & Recreation - 35
May 2021 - Parks & Recreation - 36
May 2021 - Parks & Recreation - 37
May 2021 - Parks & Recreation - 38
May 2021 - Parks & Recreation - 39
May 2021 - Parks & Recreation - 40
May 2021 - Parks & Recreation - 41
May 2021 - Parks & Recreation - 42
May 2021 - Parks & Recreation - 43
May 2021 - Parks & Recreation - 44
May 2021 - Parks & Recreation - 45
May 2021 - Parks & Recreation - 46
May 2021 - Parks & Recreation - 47
May 2021 - Parks & Recreation - 48
May 2021 - Parks & Recreation - 49
May 2021 - Parks & Recreation - 50
May 2021 - Parks & Recreation - 51
May 2021 - Parks & Recreation - 52
May 2021 - Parks & Recreation - 53
May 2021 - Parks & Recreation - 54
May 2021 - Parks & Recreation - 55
May 2021 - Parks & Recreation - 56
May 2021 - Parks & Recreation - Cover3
May 2021 - Parks & Recreation - Cover4
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/july-2022
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/june-2022
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/may-2022
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/april-2022
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/march-2022
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/february-2022
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/january-2022
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/december-2021
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/november-2021
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/october-2021
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/september-2021
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/august-2021
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/july-2021
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/june-2021
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/may-2021
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/april-2021
https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/march-2021
https://www.nxtbookmedia.com