Document Type

Capstone Project

Degree Name

Bachelor of Science (B.S.)


Science & Environmental Policy


he California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) is one of many tools available in land use planning. CEQA, along with general plans, zoning ordinances, and development codes, helps communities to achieve a high-quality environment in balance with urban growth. CEQA specifically holds public agencies responsible for identifying and disclosing the environmental impacts of their decisions and actions. This capstone project includes a CEQA-mandated draft environmental assessment for the Salinas Marriott Hotels Project and a supplemental report that describes CEQA, how CEQA serves as a link between science and policy, and my role in the preparation of the Environmental Assessment document. While CEQA alone does not take into account the qualitative social impacts accompanying urban growth, forward-looking communities can design policies that preserve open space and create neighborhood parks and adopt the policies into the community's general plan. General plan policies can then be integrated into the CEQA process as thresholds of significance for assessing environmental impacts. CEQA's interdependence on public review ensures that a wide body of knowledge may be brought together and allows for collaboration among the public, scientists, economists, and decision-makers.


Capstone Project (B.S.) Earth Systems Science & Policy Institute

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