State Environmental Policy Act process - environmental impact statement
An important part of our process to update the Flood Management Plan is to prepare an environmental impact statement (EIS). An EIS is a document that describes proposed actions and how they would affect the environment and people. Through the EIS process, King County will identify and analyze potential impacts of the plan on threatened or endangered species, water quality, historical and cultural resources, transportation, and more.
King County will explore the impacts of two scenarios, called “alternatives,” in the EIS. As a standard part of the EIS process, a “no action alternative” is considered. The analysis will consider the impacts of not adopting the new flood plan (the no action alternative) and continuing to use the 2006 and 2013 flood plans to guide floodplain management policy and activities and will also evaluate the impacts associated with adopting the new flood plan.
The County’s current flood plan focuses on flooding and erosion hazards on major rivers and streams like the Snoqualmie and Cedar rivers and Issaquah Creek. The updated flood plan proposes to address flooding more broadly on smaller streams and tributaries, lakes, and in urbans and coastal areas. Public comments from the EIS scoping period confirmed this broader scope has the potential to result in better outcomes for King County communities.
Learn more about the EIS process by reading our scoping fact sheet (1.11 MB, PDF)
Scoping period (completed in 2022)
The scoping period is a formal opportunity for public input. We invited the public, tribal governments, and local, state, and federal agencies to comment on the range of alternatives, areas of impact, and possible mitigation measures that should be evaluated within the EIS.
A 30-day comment period was held from Monday, Nov. 7 to Friday, Dec. 9, 2022. The submitted comments provided valuable information about topics to consider in evaluating potential environmental impacts. Many of these topics will be considered as the EIS is drafted. We also received comments that are not applicable to the EIS analysis but are relevant to the flood plan itself, and those comments will be considered as part of plan development.
Review the King County Flood Plan Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) Scoping Summary (May 2023), (PDF, 190 KB)
More opportunities to comment on the EIS
King County will offer another formal opportunity for public input during the draft EIS review period. This is when comments are requested on the merits of the alternatives and the adequacy of environmental analysis. Tentative timing is fall 2023.