Reasons for Exemption
Cal. Code Regs., tit. 14, sec. 15301 provides that projects which consist of the operation, repair, maintenance, permitting, leasing, licensing, or minor alteration of existing public or private structures, facilities, mechanical equipment, or topographical features, and which involve negligible or no expansion of use, are categorically exempt from the provisions of the California Environmental Quality Act. The project includes development and testing of a zinc-based battery prototype for stationary storage applications. The project will also involve the build-out and demonstration of a pilot production line for zinc sponge anodes, a critical component of zinc-based batteries. This project will take place at an existing, approximately 4,000 square-foot laboratory facility, that is already designed for this type of work. New equipment that will be installed include furnaces, drying chambers, battery cycling equipment and is expected to occupy approximately 2,500 square-feet of the existing facility. The proposed project will result in negligible or no expansion of use of the existing laboratory facility. Therefore, the project falls within section 15301 and will not have a significant effect on the environment.
The project will not impact an environmental resource of hazardous or critical concern where designated, precisely mapped, and officially adopted pursuant to law by federal, state, or local agencies; does not involve any cumulative impacts of successive projects of the same type in the same place that might be considered significant; does not involve unusual circumstances that might have a significant effect on the environment; will not result in damage to scenic resources within a highway officially designated as a state scenic highway; the project site is not included on any list compiled pursuant to Government Code section 65962.5; and the project will not cause a substantial adverse change in the significance of a historical resource. Therefore, none of the exceptions to categorical exemptions listed in CEQA Guidelines section 15300.2 apply to this project and this project will not have a significant effect on the environment.