HomeResourcesAudit Database Project Compliance RecommendationsEnvironmental AssessmentsEnvironmental Requirements in Solicitations and Awards - 22 CFR 216 - ADS 204

Environmental Requirements in Solicitations and Awards - 22 CFR 216 - ADS 204

The first step in USAID’s environmental assessment process is the Initial Environmental Examination, a document that details the effects of a proposed action on the environment, if that activity is not exempt from or excluded by Title 22 of the Code of Federal Regulations, Part 216—Environmental Procedures (22 CFR 216).

The Initial Environmental Examination evaluates the potential of program or project activities for environmental impact and establishes mitigation actions, including the monitoring and evaluation required from project design through implementation. The Initial Environmental Examination also determines the threshold decision, which is a formal agency assessment of whether a proposed agency action is a major action significantly affecting the environment and whether an Environmental Assessment or Environmental Impact Statement, more detailed environmental studies, will be required.

Threshold decisions are divided into the following categories:

  • Negative Determination Without Conditions (no impacts)
  • Negative Determination With Conditions (some risk of environmental impact)
  • Positive Determination (significant risk of environmental impact)
  • Deferral (activity is not developed enough to make a determination)

ADS Chapter 204, “Environmental Procedures” (204.3.4.a(6)), requires strategic objective teams and operating units to incorporate factors and mitigative measures identified in environmental evaluation documents (e.g., Initial Environmental Examination), as appropriate, in the design and implementation instruments for programs, projects, activities, or amendments.

The responsibilities of project implementers regarding these environmental requirements should be determined up front and explicitly enumerated in the solicitations and subsequent awards prior to project implementation. Therefore, contracting officer or agreement officer must incorporate these requirements into any contracts, grants, cooperative agreements, or other mechanisms used to implement the activity.

Monitoring Environmental Compliance Components During Project Implementation

The Code of Federal Regulations (22 CFR 216.3(a)(8)) requires that monitoring take into account environmental impacts during the implementation of certain projects, programs, and activities. ADS 204.2.c and ADS 204.3.4.b state that mission officials are responsible for ongoing monitoring and evaluation of activities to ensure they comply with USAID’s environmental procedures and to identify and address any new or unforeseen consequences arising during implementation. Monitoring and evaluation responsibilities include conducting site visits to ensure that all mitigative environmental measures in the award are implemented throughout the life of the award.

Designated Officers for Overseeing Implementation of 22 CFR 216

ADS 204.2 describes the responsibilities of USAID’s environmental advisors at the bureau, regional, and mission levels. The Agency Environmental Coordinator is responsible for overseeing the effective implementation of 22 CFR 216 throughout the Agency. At the bureau level, the bureau environmental officer is responsible for overseeing the effective implementation of 22 CFR 216 throughout all operating units in their bureau. Regional environmental advisors and mission environmental officers are responsible for advising teams, activity managers, contracting and agreement officer’s technical representatives, and operating unit heads on how best to comply with 22 CFR 216 requirements.

Source: AUDIT REPORT NO. 9-000-11-002-P JULY 21, 2011

This information is derived from audit reports of the Office of the Inspector General. The source refers to the audit report, which is available on this site as part of the Audit Database Project: an educational tool for compliance with USAID regulations.  Please see the disclaimer of this site before using this information.

Tags: Environmental Assessments

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