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Land development may require an environmental assessment

The state of Georgia has taken steps designed to fiercely protect its beautiful landscape and waterways. This is why land development can no longer happen without some consideration for its impact on the environment. As such, it may be necessary to obtain an environmental assessment before any work can be done to develop a piece of land.

The assessment is designed to identify aspects of the project that could impact the environment. Once identified, it will need to be determined whether those affects can be mitigated. Thereafter, a determination will need to be made regarding whether the mitigation will be enough to nullify, or at least acceptably reduce, any negative impacts on the environment. This is not the same as an environmental survey, which identifies any existing issues already on the land.

This assessment determines whether the completed project will harm the environment. Depending on the type of project or the laws governing the project's proposed location, you may be responsible for obtaining an environmental assessment. Many industrial projects, projects on Georgia's coastal waterways and other protected lands or large industry projects will require an assessment. Before any final determinations are made, the current report will be compared with other reports in the same area, along with historical data to ensure that the findings are accurate.

If you are in the land development business and are required to conduct an environmental assessment, it may be beneficial to involve an attorney in the process to ensure that your rights are protected. If you chose a particular location with the environmental implications in mind, the assessment should coincide with your beliefs. If it does not, then that could raise legal issues for which you may need representation.

Source: thebalance.com, "What Is An Environmental Assessment? Do I Need One?", Juan Rodriguez, Accessed on Sept. 24, 2017

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