Throughout the environmental review process there are many opportunities for the public to get involved. See how you can be most effective when participating.

CEQA provides individuals with the opportunity to participate effectively in all steps of the environmental review process from notice about a pending project to the identification of potential environmental impacts. A large part of this participation process is in the form of commenting.

CEQA is the bill of rights for an environmental democracy.

Byron Sher, California State Legislator, quoted in CEQA Everyday Heroes

The public’s right to participate in CEQA’s environmental review process is mandated in the statute itself and is vigilantly protected by the California courts that interpret and enforce CEQA. CEQA requires every public agency in California to have procedures that provide full public participation to ensure the public agency can receive and evaluate public reaction to the environmental consequences of its actions.

PCL Foundation has outlined in the links below a strategy to present the most powerful and effective comments that will get your message heard:

working together on plans and actions
  • Reviewing Environmental Impact Reports – A list of questions reviewers may want to ask as they read through the environmental impact report.
  • Formulating Comments – Throughout the CEQA process the public is asked to comment on the environmental impacts of any given project. We have created a list of sample questions you should ask as you review an environmental impact report.
  • Delivering Effective CEQA Comments – In order to present your comments on an environmental impact report in a way that is most effective and professional to your audience, we have created a list of simple reminders.
  • Commenting on Negative Declarations – Helpful tips to assist you with commenting on negative declarations.
  • Examples of Effective CEQA Comments (PDF) – When formulating your own comments, use these examples to guide you along the way.
  • Share Your CEQA Story with PCL (MS Word doc) – We want to highlight the successes of concerned members like you who have made a difference in their community through the utilization of the CEQA process. By sharing your success stories you will be helping to inform and empower concerned citizens to take action in their communities.