The State Environmental Policy Act (SEPA) provides a way to identify possible environmental impacts that may result from governmental decisions. These descisions may be related to the issuance of permits, construction of facilities, or the adoption of regulations, policies or plans.
SEPA provides local governments such as Cowlitz County the authority to both review and mitigate potential impacts of potential impacts of development proposals and non-project actions. For example - SEPA review may identify that a known historic site. The County can utilize this knowledge to condition permit approval to reduce or control impacts to this historic site.