Draft Environmental Impact Report/Statement: Merced to Fresno

The purpose of environmental documents is to disclose information to decision makers and the public. While the science and analysis that supports this Draft Project Environmental Impact Report/Environmental Impact Statement is complex, this document is intended for the general public. Every attempt has been made to limit technical terms and the use of acronyms. Where this cannot be avoided, the terms and acronyms are defined the first time they are used, and a list of acronyms and abbreviations is provided in Chapter 11 of this document.

For a reader with only a short time to devote to this document, the Highlights is the place to start. For more detail than the Highlights is also available. The Summary provides an overview of all of the substantive chapters and includes a table listing the potential environmental impacts for each environmental resource topic and directs the reader where to get details elsewhere in the document. We have also provided a brief explanation of each chapter (see left) in the Merced to Fresno section Draft Project Environmental Impact Report/Environmental Impact Statement.

The public comment period is now closed for the Draft EIR/EIS for the Merced to Fresno section of the California High-Speed Train project. Formal comments on the Draft EIR/EIS for the Merced to Fresno Section received during the public comment period between August 15 - October 13, 2011 will be addressed in the Final EIR/EIS. The Final EIS/EIS for the Merced to Fresno section is being prepared now and is planned for release in early 2012.

Revised Draft Environmental Impact Report/Statement: Merced-Fresno

The following documents are available in Adobe Acrobat PDF Format (http://get.adobe.com/reader) , which is available for download. Downloadable files in Adobe Acrobat Format (PDF) require Adobe Acrobat Reader. If you do not have a copy of this free software, you can download it from Adobe at http://get.adobe.com/reader. If you already have a copy of this software, simply click on the links and it will open up automatically. Note: many of these files are very large and could take up to several minutes to download.

Educational Materials
Volume I: Report
Volume II: Technical Appendices
Volume III: Alignment Plans and Other Appendices
Technical Reports
Checkpoint A
Checkpoint B
Brief Explanation of Each Chapter
  • Chapter 1.0, Project Purpose, Need, and Objectives explains why the project is proposed and provides a history of the planning process.
  • Chapter 2.0, Alternatives, describes the proposed Merced to Fresno Section alternatives and design options, HST station options, and heavy maintenance facility options, as well as the No Project Alternative used for purposes of comparison. It contains illustrations and maps and provides a review of construction activities. These first two chapters help the reader understand what is being analyzed in the remainder of the document.
  • Chapter 3.0, Affected Environment, Environmental Consequences, and Mitigation Measures is where the reader can find information about the existing transportation, environmental, and social conditions in the area of the proposed project. This chapter provides the findings of the analysis of potential environmental impacts, along with methods to reduce these impacts (called mitigation measures).
  • Chapter 4.0, Section 4(f)/Section 6(f) Evaluation summarizes parks, and historic properties in accordance with Section 4(f) of the Department of Transportation Act of 1966 and Section 6(f) of the Land and Water Conservation Funds Act. It describes avoidance alternatives and measures to minimize harm to these resources.
  • Chapter 5.0, Project Costs and Operations, summarizes the estimated capital and operations and maintenance costs for each Merced to Fresno Section alternative evaluated in the Project EIR/EIS, including funding and financial risk.
  • Chapter 6.0, CEQA/NEPA Decision Process and Other Considerations, summarizes the project’s significant adverse environmental effects, including those which cannot be avoided if the project is implemented. It also summarizes the significant irreversible environmental changes that would occur as a result of the project or irretrievable commitments of resources or foreclosure of future options.
  • Chapter 7.0, Public and Agency Involvement, contains summaries of coordination and outreach activities, with agencies and the general public.
  • Chapter 8.0, EIR/EIS Distribution identifies individuals and organizations informed of the availability of the Draft Project EIR/EIS.
  • Chapter 9.0, List of Preparers provides the names and responsibilities of the authors of the Draft Project EIR/EIS.
  • Chapter 10.0, References/Sources Used in Document Preparation, cites the references and contacts used in writing this document.
  • Chapter 11.0, Glossary of Terms, provides a definition of certain terms used in the Project EIR/EIS.
  • Chapter 12.0, Index, provides a tool to cross-reference major topics used in the Project EIR/EIS.
  • Chapter 13.0, Acronyms and Abbreviations, defines the acronyms and abbreviations used in this document.