Reasons for Exemption
SMUD has reviewed and determined that the Project is categorically exempt from the provisions of CEQA pursuant to Sections 15301 (Existing Facilities) and 15302 (Replacement and Reconstruction). Section 15301 applies to projects that consist of the operation, repair, maintenance, permitting, leasing, licensing, or minor alternations of existing public or private structures, facilities, mechanical equipment, or topographical features, involving negligible or no expansion of use beyond that existing at the time of the lead agency's determination. Section 15302 states that "Class 2 consists of replacement or reconstruction of existing structures and facilities where the new structure will be located on the same site as the structure replaced and will have substantially the same purpose and capacity as the structure replaced..." Thus, the Project will involve the repair and minor alternation of an existing substation facility resulting in no change or expansion of use; and the replacement of an existing transformer and switchgear in the same location and serving the same purpose and capacity. Therefore, no further environmental review is required. The General rule exemption in Section 15061 (b)(3) states that “Where it can be seen with certainty that there is no possibility that the activity in question may have a significant effect on the environment, the activity is not subject to CEQA”. The project will serve the same purpose and capacity as the existing transformer. All work will be within the footprint of the site. Thus, the project will not have a significant effect on the environment.