Notice of Preparation: Environmental Impact Report for the State Water Project San Joaquin Field Division Operations and Maintenance Habitat Conservation Plan


Pursuant to the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA), the California Department of Water Resources (DWR) will initiate preparation of an Environmental Impact Report (EIR) to evaluate the potential environmental effects associated with implementation of the California State Water Project (SWP) San Joaquin Field Division Operations and Maintenance Habitat Conservation Plan (HCP) and issuance of federal and state Incidental Take Permits (ITPs) (referred to as the Project). DWR is the lead agency under CEQA.

DWR prepared the Notice of Preparation (NOP) in accordance with CEQA to inform agencies, organizations, and interested parties that an EIR will be prepared for the Project. DWR is requesting input from agencies, organizations, and interested parties regarding the scope and content of the environmental analysis to be included in the EIR. In accordance with CEQA, DWR requests that agencies provide comments on the environmental issues related to the statutory responsibilities of their particular agency.

Issuance of a federal ITP is a federal action that must comply with the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA). The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) is the federal lead agency and will publish a Notice of Intent to formally initiate the NEPA process. As the federal lead agency under NEPA, USFWS will determine what type of document is required to satisfy the requirements of NEPA.

Routine maintenance of SWP facilities is required to ensure its proper operation, which may result in incidental take of protected species. The Project consists of implementation of the HCP to comply with the permitting criteria of the federal and state Endangered Species Acts and the permitting process for Fully Protected species established by California Senate Bill 147. DWR is seeking ITPs that remain in effect for a Permit Term of 50 years. The NOP contains a description of the Project, its location, and a preliminary overview of the environmental resource topics to be addressed in the EIR.

View the NOP here.

The Project is of statewide, regional, and/or area-wide significance; therefore, a CEQA scoping meeting is required pursuant to Public Resources Code Section 21083.9(a)(2). During the 30-day public scoping period, DWR will hold two public scoping meetings, as follows: on Tuesday, July 16, 2024, from 10:00 a.m. to 11:00 a.m. and 6:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. The content provided at both meetings will be the same. Meetings will be held virtually via online Zoom webinar. Register to attend at

The public scoping meetings will provide an additional opportunity to receive and disseminate information, identify potential environmental issues of concern, and discuss the scope of analyses to be included in the EIR. The scoping meetings are not public hearings, and no decisions on the Project will be made at these meetings. The scoping meetings are provided as an additional opportunity for agencies, organizations, and the public to provide comments on what environmental issues should be addressed in the EIR. All public agencies, organizations, and interested parties are encouraged to attend and participate in one of the meetings.

All scoping comments must be received in writing by 5:00 p.m. on Monday, July 22, 2024, which marks the end of the 30-day public scoping period. All written comments should indicate an associated contact person for the agency or organization, if applicable, and reference the Project name in the subject line. Pursuant to CEQA, responsible agencies are requested to indicate their statutory responsibilities in connection with the Project when responding. Mail or email comments and direct any questions to the following contact person:

Shelly Amrhein

Manager, Habitat Conservation Planning Section

Department of Water Resources

Operations and Maintenance, Environmental Assessment Branch

P.O. Box 942836

Sacramento, CA 94236-0001


If comments are provided via email, please include “San Joaquin Field Division Habitat Conservation Plan” in the subject line, attach comments in Microsoft Word format, and include the commenter’s U.S. Postal Service mailing address.