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NEPA Coverage for Orion MPCV and SLS
September 13, 2013
NASA published a Final Constellation Programmatic Environmental Impact Statement (PEIS) in January 2008. The Record of Decision (ROD) was signed by NASA on February 28, 2008. The 2008 ROD outlined NASA's proposed plan for implementing the then current Congressional and Presidential direction for human spaceflight (the Constellation Program) and was based on the analysis contained in the PEIS. The Constellation Program has since been cancelled per the FY10 President's Budget Request.

The primary focus of new Congressional and Presidential direction is to enable future human missions beyond low Earth orbit (LEO), drawing on and continuing certain developmental work of the Constellation program, but eliminating some of its planned elements and specific objectives and discarding the "Constellation" moniker. The Space Launch System (SLS) and Orion Multi-Purpose Crew Vehicle (MPCV) are now authorized to replace the Constellation program, and continue deep space human exploration beyond low Earth orbit.

NASA has therefore conducted a review of the Constellation PEIS and ROD in the context of the Orion MPCV and SLS programs. At the programmatic level and in the early stages of development, NASA anticipates its revised human spaceflight program will continue to use the same general technologies and facilities used for the Constellation program as analyzed in the 2008 PEIS. Given the directed changes in NASA's post-Shuttle human spaceflight program, NASA has evaluated the extent to which the revised plan for NASA's human spaceflight program fits within the envelope of activities and impacts analyzed in the 2008 PEIS.

A Modified ROD was subsequently issued on July 29, 2011, documenting NASA's consideration of possible changes in the environmental impacts resulting from directed changes in the Agency's proposed human spaceflight program. The Modified ROD updates the 2008 ROD to address NASA's human spaceflight program as revised to implement Congressional and Presidential redirection. The PEIS, 2008 ROD and 2011 Modified ROD are available on the NASA NEPA page, as well as the Orion MPCV and SLS pages.

Modified Record of Decision for NASA's Post-Shuttle Human Spaceflight Program and the Constellation Programmatic Environmental Impact Statement (2011)
Accessible Version (PDF 250KB)
Signature Version (PDF 500KB)

NEPA Record of Environmental Consideration for NASA's Multi-Purpose Crew Vehicle Exploration Flight Test 1
> Accessible Version (PDF 25KB)

Original Record of Decision Constellation Programmatic Environmental Impact Statement (2008)
› Record of Decision Constellation Programmatic Environmental Impact Statement (PDF 90KB)
› Final Complete Document (PDF 40MB)

Programmatic EIS (PEIS) by Section:
› Table of Contents (PDF 800 KB)
› Executive Summary (PDF 2.3MB)
› Chapter 1: Purpose and Need for Action (PDF 460 KB)
› Chapter 2: Description and Comparison of Alternatives (PDF 8.1MB)
› Chapter 3: Description of the Affected Environment (PDF 8.7MB)
› Chapter 4: Environmental Consequences of Alternatives (PDF 4.8MB)
› Chapters 5-10: Summary of Mitigation Measures; List of Preparers; Agencies, Organizations, and Individuals Consulted; References; Glossary of Terms; Index (PDF 900KB)
› Appendicies (PDF 17.7MB)

Related PEIS Information:
› EPA Final Cx PEIS Notice Of Availability (NOA)
› NASA Final Cx PEIS Notice Of Availability (NOA)

The EPA notice that the Programmatic Environmental Impact Statement is available to the public.

Download the Programmatic Environmental Impact Statement document (PDF 22MB).
› National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA)

Overview of the NEPA process.

For additional information on the NEPA process, please contact:

Tina Borghild Norwood
(202) 358-7324
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Page Last Updated: September 18th, 2013
Page Editor: NASA Administrator