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CEQA Guidance & Tools

​CEQA Guide

​The Guide to Air Quality Assessment in Sacramento County (CEQA Guide) provides methods to analyze air quality impacts from plans and projects, including screening criteria, thresholds of significance, calculation methods, and mitigation measures to assist lead agencies in complying with the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA).  The CEQA Guide is available to download by individual chapters.

Title and Table of Contents

Chapter 1: Introduction (April 2020)

Chapter 1:  Link to current Air Monitoring Stations Map

Chapter 2: Environmental Review (April 2020) 

Chapter 2 Appendix: Thresholds of Significance Table (April 2020)

Chapter 3: Construction (April 2020)  

Chapter 3 Appendix: Basic Construction Emission Control Practices (Best Management Practices) (July 2019)

Chapter 3 Appendix: Enhanced On-Site Exhaust Controls (April 2019)

Chapter 3 Appendix: Enhanced Fugitive PM Dust Control Practices (December 2009)

Chapter 3 Appendix: Dispersion Modeling of Construction-Generated PM10 Emissions (July 2013)

Chapter 3 Appendix: Off-Site Construction Mitigation Fees (April 2019)

Chapter 4: Operational (June 2020) NEW

Chapter 4 Appendix: Operational Screening Table (April 2018)

Chapter 4 Appendix: PM Best Management Practices (October 2020) NEW

Chapter 4 Appendix: CO Dispersion Modeling (June 2014)

Chapter 5: Toxic Air Contaminants (April 2020)

Chapter 6: Greenhouse Gases (April 2020)

Chapter 6 Appendix: GHG Operational Screening Table (April 2018)

Chapter 6 Appendix: GHG BMP Applicability (April 2020)

Chapter 6 Appendix: Construction GHG Reductions (May 2016)

Chapter 7: Odors (June 2016)

Chapter 7 Appendix: Odor Screening Table (December 2009)

Chapter 7 Appendix: Odor Reductions (June 2014)

Chapter 8: Cumulative (May 2020)

Chapter 9: Program Level Analysis (April 2020)

Revision History

​Tools & Additional Guidance

Sac Metro Air District recommends these tools and guidance documents to assist in air quality impact analysis.


Tools: Models, Calculators & Data Files


California Emissions Estimator Model including User's Guide (Sac Metro Air District recommends using CalEEMod Version 2016.3.2 for projects being released for public review on or after January 1, 2018).

Roadway Construction Emissions Model (version 9.0, May 2018).  This is a .zip file. Please save it and then open it to extract the .xlsm file.  IMPORTANT NOTE:  U.S. EPA approved EMFAC2017 on August 15, 2019.  Version 9.0 includes emissions factors from EMFAC2017. 

Version 8.1.0 included emissions factors from EMFAC2014 and was available for analysis of projects requiring federal involvement during the time period EMFAC2017 was being reviewed by U.S. EPA.  Consult the Sac Metro Air District staff regarding the appropriate use of version 8.1.0 (version 8.1.0). 

Harborcraft, Dredge and Barge Emission Factor Calculator for obtaining emission factors from marine equipment for planning and construction analysis (July 2017)

AERMOD meteorological data files (2014-2018) (These are .zip files. Please save the files and then open them to extract the PFL and SFC files):

Adopted Thresholds of Significance (Resolutions and Documentation):


Guidance:  Protocol, Recommendations & Documents 


Recommended mitigation measures for construction and operational emissions

Mobile Sources Air Toxics Protocol for assessing potential cancer risk to receptors located near major roadways and railways (July 2018)

Recommendations for Siting New Projects Near Existing Sources that Emit Odors and Toxic Air Contaminants (July 2019) for addressing potential public health impacts for projects that may expose receptors to existing sources of odors and toxic emissions.

General Rules Statement for Development Projects (October 2020) NEW

State CEQA Guidelines Appendix G (June 2019, courtesy of AEP)

Sacramento Area Council of Government (SACOG) Regional Plans 


CAPCOA Roadway Review Guidance 

In August 2018 the California Air Pollution Control Officers Association (CAPCOA) published Air Quality Analysis in CEQA Roadway Review to address frequently questioned topics in air quality analysis, including greenhouse gases, for roadway projects reviewed under CEQA. The guidance is intended for use by lead agencies in preparing air quality analysis and by air districts in reviewing and commenting on roadway project CEQA documents. Please note that this is not comprehensive guidance on air quality analysis for CEQA review of roadway projects. It only responds to common questions and current misconceptions. Air districts often have guidance on a full range of topics in CEQA air quality analysis, which is appropriate for overall air quality analysis in their geographic area. Please consult any of the Sac Metro Air District staff listed below to determine the appropriate methodology for project specific CEQA analysis.


Guidance to Address the Friant Ranch Ruling

In December 2018 the California Supreme Court  issued a decision in the Sierra Club v. County of Fresno case regarding the Friant Ranch project ((2018) 6 Cal. 5th 502).  The Court determined the air quality analysis include a reasonable effort to connect a project's air quality impacts to likely health consequences or explain in meaningful detail why it is not feasible to do so.  This type of health analysis has not been conducted for CEQA analysis normally. Sac Metro Air District prepared Interim Guidance to address the Friant Ranch decision while a methodology is being developed to provide a standardized health related analysis.

Sac Metro Air District with its consultant Ramboll prepared a DRAFT Guidance to Address the Friant Ranch Ruling for CEQA Projects in the Sac Metro Air District (January 31, 2020).  The guidance provides screening health information for projects at or below regional CEQA thresholds of significance emissions levels and selected strategic areas above thresholds of significance emissions levels.  Modeling guidance for large projects located outside strategic areas is also included.


In response to comments received on the January 31, 2020, draft Friant guidance document, the Sac Metro Air District prepared a REVISED DRAFT Guidance to Address the Friant Ranch Ruling for CEQA Projects in the Sac Metro Air District (June 2020) and screening tools. 

Sac Metro Air District is working to finalize the Friant guidance. Inquiries can be sent to Paul Philley ( or Karen Huss (

​Contact for More Information

Staff​​Jurisdiction and Topics​Phone Number / Email
​Paul Philley, AICP​CEQA and Land Use Planning Section Supervisor

​916-874-4882 /

​Joanne Chan​Federal and State Projects, Toxic Air Contaminants​916-874-6267 /
​Teri Duarte, MPH​City of Sacramento, City of Citrus Heights, Health Impacts​916-874-4816 /
​Rachel DuBoseCounty of Sacramento, Toxic Air Contaminants, Health Impacts, Construction​916-874-4876 /
​Joseph "JJ" HurleyCity of Rancho Cordova, City of Elk Grove, City of Isleton, Active Transportation, Community Air Protection ​916-874-2694 /
​Karen Huss​City of Galt, City of Folsom, Federal Projects, Construction, CEQA Guide and Tools​916-874-4881 /
​Shelley Jiang​Climate Action and Adaptation, Civic Spark

​916-874-4885 /

​Molly Wright, AICP​City of Sacramento, County of Sacramento, Transit and Transportation Projects, State Projects​916-874-4207 /


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