Environmental planner Interview Questions

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Environmental Planner interview questions shared by candidates

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Caltrans
Environmental Planner was asked...18 March 2018

What is the main difference between NEPA and CEQA?

4 Answers

project description
- alternatives
- scoping
- environmental setting
- initial study
- names of the environmental documents
- mitigation measure monitoring
- mitigation measure requirements Less

NEPA is a disclosure process that assesses the impacts of reasonable alternatives and may choose the least damaging one. CEQA is an environmental impact analysis impact process that results in a decision document choosing the least damaging alternative Less

Major difference is NEPA is federal (EIS) and CEQA is State of CA (EIR). If you left this out, can see why you would not get the job! Less

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Caltrans

Please name all acronyms that you know in the environmental field and explain what they are for.

3 Answers

 USFW: U.S. Fish &Wildlife  BLM: Bureau of Land Management  EPA: Environmental Protection Agency  ACOE: U.S. Army Corps Engineers  NES: Natural Environmental Study  BA: Biological Assessment  BO: Biological Opinion  ESA: Endangered Species Act  2081 or ITP: Section 2081 of Fish and Game Code  ITP: Incidental Take Permit  NWP: Nationwide Permit  California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA)  Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)  Less

 USFW: U.S. Fish &Wildlife  BLM: Bureau of Land Management  EPA: Environmental Protection Agency  ACOE: U.S. Army Corps Engineers  NES: Natural Environmental Study  BA: Biological Assessment  BO: Biological Opinion  ESA: Endangered Species Act  2081 or ITP: Section 2081 of Fish and Game Code  ITP: Incidental Take Permit  NWP: Nationwide Permit  California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA)  Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)  Less

California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA), Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), Less

Caltrans

I asked them how Caltrans had improved at protecting natural resources of the years.

2 Answers

A non-supervisor answered that Caltrans had been steadily improving during his almost 2 decades of service. When I said I was really glad to hear that the supervisor said, "Okay that's enough," and ended the interview. Less

That should have been your first tip. To run

Caltrans

IF your dealing with a oak wooldand near a wetland please explain the entire environmental planning process from start to finish?

2 Answers

Honestly its a 3 page answer look at chapter 6 of Caltrans Enviro Process.

^^ correct. They wanted to see how much of it you could get. If you could mention that (The CT Env. Process) and give a GOOD outline of the process, you would score well; if you could quote all 3 pages line by line, you would put a smile on their faces (and probably blow them away). Oh yeah - sitting on an interview panel IS exhausting. 25-30+ interviews for one spot, you try not to let it show by #25.. Don't let it bother you. Less

Caltrans

How did you prepare for the job?

2 Answers

I read the duty statement

I read the job requirements summary

CirclePoint

What is your biggest weakness? Horrible question, so tired of hearing it.

1 Answers

My weakness is receiving that question.

CirclePoint

How do you manage multiple tasks and deadlines?

1 Answers

I broke down a list of priorities and deadlines, items which could not be addressed until other items earlier were needed to be done, and so on. Having a desk calendar also helps. If you're working with a team make sure there is CLEAR communication about who does what, and if you're a liason in between make sure everybody is clear as to what is required so everyone is on the same page. Less

Ecology and Environment

I noticed that you live about an hour away from the office. Would you be willing to relocate to Virginia Beach?

1 Answers

I told the interviewer that I would consider relocatign if hired for the position. Less

Are you willing to work overtime?

1 Answers

Yes. But not always. Work and life balance is important

Caltrans

Describe the laws pertaining to cultural resource management?

1 Answers

AB 52, SB 18, Section 106 of the National Historic Preservation Act

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