Environmental disciplines

Environmental regulations across a range of disciplines ensure the work of building and maintaining our transportation system does supports our communities and environment. Much of the environmental work we do is organized into the following disciplines. Additional information is also available on our NEPA & SEPA or Permits & approvals pages.

Air quality, noise and energy analyses address emissions from vehicles, noise generated on our roadways and energy used in our transportation system. In addition, we consider the greenhouse gas emissions from our projects in project documentation. Use the links below to find what you need to be in compliance with air, noise and energy state and federal regulations.

Cultural resources include archaeological sites, including historic buildings, roads, and bridges and places on the landscape that are historically significant to Washington State. The Cultural Resources program works to preserve this rich and diverse cultural heritage while balancing the state’s transportation needs.

Find what you need to comply with a number of different state and federal laws that guide how WSDOT addresses cultural resources. View highlights of Washington’s most historically significant transportations structures and results of creative mitigation efforts.

Learn how to protect fish, wildlife and habitat resources during construction, maintenance and operation of the state transportation system.

Identify and resolve hazardous materials (HazMat) related regulatory and compliance challenges to minimize agency risk. Hazardous materials may include lead, creosote, asbestos, chemically contaminated sediment, releases from underground storage tanks or other solid waste. Use the webpages linked below to investigate, sample and comply with local and federal laws to safely manage and dispose of hazardous materials from early planning through construction.

Learn how to prepare indirect effects and cumulative impacts analyses for projects requiring an Environmental Assessment (EA) or an Environmental Impact Statement (EIS).

Learn how to consider land use impacts of a project, including Section 4(f), Section 6(f), Visual, land use, and Wild & Scenic Rivers and more.

Learn how to consider social and community effects of a project under the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) and the State Environmental Policy Act (SEPA).

Correcting high priority fish passage barriers and repetitive stream bank and shoreline erosion problems, also known as chronic environmental deficiency (CED) sites, reduces the state transportation system’s impact on fish and fish habitat.

Managing the affects our daily activities and construction projects have on groundwater and surface water helps WSDOT protect and improve water quality and habitat.

Find what you need to comply with groundwater, surface water, stormwater, and floodplain regulations, identify geologic conditions, and develop discipline reports for these topics. Also, find recent research and reports documenting activities required by stormwater permits.

Wetlands consist of any lands where soil is at least periodically covered by water, including rivers, lakes, streams and estuaries. WSDOT works to prevent net loss of wetlands and minimize impacts if they are unavoidable during the development of transportation project.

Find information to complete wetland assessments, delineations and learn about options for mitigating impacts to wetlands.

14 fish passage projects were completed in 2020

improving access to 54.2 miles of upstream habitat.

11,959 incidents responded to

by WSDOT’s incident Response teams during second quarter of 2021, 15% more than same quarter in 2020.

41 Pre-existing Funds Projects Advertised

during the eighth quarter of the 2019-2021 biennium.