Division of Environmental Analysis (DEA)

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DEA Offices

Jennifer Gillies, Office Chief
The Biological Studies Branch (Headquarters) provides the following services related to wildlife biology, botany, ecology, wetlands and aquatic biology:

  • biological and natural resource studies in support of district projects;
  • procedural guidance on compliance with state and federal natural resource laws;
  • guidance in natural resources management through preparation of the Environmental Handbook, Volume III and Guidance for Consultants;
  • training in natural resource issues;
  • Aquatic Ecology
  • Botany
  • Wetlands
  • Wildlife Biology
  • Interagency Relations
    • USACE
    • USFWS
    • NOAA
    • CDFW
  • review of consultant-prepared natural resource studies;

Alex Neeb, Acting Office Chief

The Cultural Studies Office provides services related to cultural resources (archaeological, architectural and historical) issues, including:

  • direct project support to the districts by assisting with technical studies;
  • procedural guidance on compliance with state and federal cultural resources laws;
  • Department policy and guidance through preparation of the Environmental Handbook, Volumes II (Cultural Resources) and various other publications;
  • training on cultural resources issues to the Department and other agencies;
  • conducts cultural resources surveys for the built environment, including buildings, bridges, structures, objects, complexes, linear features, districts, and landscapes;
  • prepares Findings of Effect, Memoranda of Agreement; and assists in developing mitigation measures for historic properties and resources; and
  • reviews cultural resources study documents, Findings of Effect, Memoranda of Agreement, and other environmental documents for adequacy of identification, evaluation, and treatment.

This branch assists the Districts on 106 procedural questions and interpreting application of the PA, peer reviews HPSR compliance documents prepared pursuant to the PA and acts as a liaison between the Districts, the SHPO's office and FHWA. This branch coordinates with the Districts regarding SHPO review schedules and CSO PEER reviews, organizes the periodic statewide teleconferences to discuss the PA and other 106 matters, and distributes the Caltrans "106 Bulletins" and other pertinent guidance (PA Teleconference Notes, and examples of Memoranda of Agreement. The interim head of the Section 106/PA Coordination Branch is David Price.

The Special Projects-Archaeology branch provides advice and guidance on issues related to the management and preservation of archaeological resources with special emphasis on review of complex studies and compliance documents in the area of prehistoric archaeology including evaluations, data recovery plans, and contract management. The branch is responsible for review and comment on cultural mitigations in excess of $500,000 per DEA policy, acts as the designated "owner" of construction contract specification standards for cultural resources and review of Non-Standard special provisions (NSSPs), and coordinates with the Environmental Management Office (EMO) in the design and delivery of training for cultural staff statewide. The branch is also involved in strategic planning, identifying research priorities and funding, organizing statewide task groups on critical cultural issues, and the planning of functional workshops. Special Projects Archaeology is headed by Glenn Gmoser.

The Built Environment Preservation Services branch, managed by Jill Hupp, serves as the Caltrans liaison with SHPO for the whole range of PRC §5024 compliance involving state-owned cultural resources: conducting consultations and coordinating with the districts and SHPO on Caltrans PRC §5024 and PRC §5024.5 activities; conducting PRC §5024.5 reviews; and reporting annually to SHPO regarding Caltrans PRC §5024-related activities. The BEPS Branch Chief serves as Caltrans representative to the State Historical Building Safety Board on issues related to the California Historical Building Code. The Branch also updates guidance in the Environmental Handbook, Volume 2—Cultural Resources.

Upon request, the branch reviews plans and specifications for conformance with the Secretary of the Interior's Standards for the Treatment of Historic Properties, provides guidance and coordination on the appropriate use of the State Historical Building Code, mitigation measures to avoid or reduce adverse effects to non-archaeological historic properties and historical resources affected by Caltrans projects and activities, identification and ranking of character defining features of historic properties and resources, language for protective covenants, historic property maintenance and rehabilitation standards, and Historic American Building Survey (HABS) and Historic American Engineering Record (HAER) documentation.

The Native American Cultural Studies branch provides guidance, advice, training, and support to the Districts in working with Native American individuals, groups, and tribes on identifying and addressing cultural and environmental concerns. The Branch also works with Native Americans directly, either to establish working relationships with DEA, or as requested by districts, to facilitate project delivery. The NACS Branch Chief serves as the Statewide Native American Coordinator and serves as the DEA's representative on the Department's Native American Advisory Committee. The Branch Chief is the Division's liaison with other Departmental units and Native American Liaisons to assist in developing an integrated and consistent approach to Native American relations and is the liaison with the Native American Heritage Commission, State Historic Preservation Office, Advisory Council on Historic Preservation, Federal Highway Administration, U.S. Bureau of Indian Affairs, and other state and federal agencies regarding Native American spiritual and cultural resource concerns. The Branch Chief monitors and evaluates pertinent state and federal legislation and regulations, disseminates that information to the districts, and seeks to ensure that the Department is in compliance with such laws. The Native American Cultural Studies Branch is headed by Sarah Allred.

Jennifer Heichel, Office Chief

The Environmental Management Office develops and monitors compliance of policies and procedures; develops, reviews and comments on proposed legislation; is responsible for preparation of departmental environmental reports and action items for the California Transportation Commission (CTC); addresses permit streamlining and environmental productivity; and maintains the Standard Environmental Reference, a compilation of all handbooks, guidance, manuals and policy documents pertaining to environmental compliance at Caltrans. The Office Chief is the primary environmental liaison with the FHWA District Operations Chiefs.

  • Standard Environmental Reference (SER)
  • Policies and procedures development
  • HQ Functional assistance with Federal and State environmental compliance laws, orders and regulations
  • Environmental reports and action items for the CTC
  • Environmental streamlining initiatives
  • Community Studies
  • Interagency Relations
    • USEPA
  • Coastal Program


District Coordinators

Interagency Relations Contacts

DEA Offices manage various interagency agreements that provide staff to resource and regulatory agencies for enhanced services including the development of environmental initiatives and procedures to streamline environmental and permit processes.

  • California Department of Fish & Wildlife (CDFW))
  • United States Army Corps of Engineers (USACE)
  • United States Fish and Wildlife Services (USFWS)
  • United States Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's National Marine Fisheries Services (NOAA)
    Contact: Natalie Hand
  • California Coastal Commission (CCC)
    Contact: Scott Williams
  • United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)
    Contact: Jennifer Heichel
  • California Department of Parks & Recreation, Office of Historic Preservation (DPR)
    Contact: Jody Brown


GNEIS - GIS, NEPA, EMS, Innovation, and eSD

Tammy Massengale, Office Chief

Consists of the following offices/subjects:


  • Geographic Information Systems (GIS) - The mission of the GIS component of GNEIS is to provide GIS support to the DEA users to assist with the sharing of environmental spatial information with other stakeholders. 
  • GIS support includes intranet and internet applications that allow stakeholders to access DEA spatial- based information. The GNEIS’ GIS group strives to create and maintain a collaborative environment between DEA users and their customers.

NEPA Assignment (NEPA)
The Division of Environmental Analysis NEPA Assignment Office was created in 2007 to support implementation of the following programs:

  • Surface Transportation Project Delivery Program under 23 CFR 327 and the NEPA Assignment Memorandum of Understanding (MOU). The Project Delivery Program began as the Surface Transportation Project Delivery Pilot Program, a 5-year program that began on July 1, 2007 and ended on September 30, 2012.
  • CE Assignment under 23 CFR 326 and the CE Assignment MOU.
  • NEPA Assignment 326 and 327 MOU Program

The activities performed collectively under both MOUs are referred to as "NEPA Assignment".

Environmental Management Systems (EMS) - The Division of Environmental Analysis (DEA) is pursuing an integrated information system with management and metrics tools that can efficiently process and deliver "product" information to stakeholders and decision makers while contributing to, and drawing upon, corporate knowledge. This integrated system manages information at four levels in concert with other systems:

  • Product Information Flow
  • Project Management Tracking
  • Process Metrics and Feedback
  • Corporate Knowledge
  • Information Management
  • Web Development and Support
  • Technical Assistance
Environmental Staff Development (eSD)

We develop and deliver training to environmental staff, statewide. Our classes include the Environmental Academy, as well as specialized training courses for Caltrans biologists, archaeologists, architectural historians, generalists/coordinators and environmental engineers. We are a part of the Capital Project Skill Development Program (CPSD), within the Division of Environmental Analysis. CPSD develops, conducts, and manages training courses to improve the skills of employees engaged in the delivery of capital improvement projects.


Environmental Engineering - Hazardous Waste, Air, Noise, Paleontology, and Stormwater

Shaila Chowdhury, Chief Environmental Engineer

Environmental Engineering consists of HWANP (Hazardous Waste, Air Quality, Noise & Vibration, Paleontology) and Stormwater (Program Development, Program Implementation, Fiscal Analysis).

Mauricio Serrano, Hazardous Waste, Air, Noise & Paleontology, Office Chief

Hazardous Waste

The Hazardous Waste program provides policy direction, technical and regulatory information, guidance documents, training, specifications, and funding information to assist Caltrans Districts with contaminated sites and materials that may be encountered during highway projects. This includes:

  • Contaminants and Waste (Aerially Deposited Lead, Naturally Occurring Asbestos, Treated Wood Waste, asphalt and concrete grindings)
  • Contaminated Properties (Acquisition of Contaminated Property Policy)
  • Guidance for technical waste and regulatory topics and procedures most frequently encountered during highway project delivery (health and safety, remediation, site closure, environmental reporting, etc)
  • Waste management and contaminated site policy, guidance and special provisions
  • Aerially deposited lead (ADL)
  • Naturally occurring asbestos (NOA)
  • Treated wood waste
  • Asphalt and concrete grindings


The Air program provides technical support for project-level air quality, mobile source air toxics and climate change studies, analysis and modeling.

  • Green house gas analysis protocol
  • PM2.5/10 hot spot analysis protocol
  • Air quality model support for CT-EMFAC and CALINE4
  • Air quality and climate change project-level analysis technical support


The Noise program provides policy direction, technical and regulatory information, research, guidance documents and training to assist Caltrans Districts with both long-term and short-term impacts due to construction and traffic noise, traffic induced vibration and bioacoustics. This includes:

  • Caltrans Traffic Noise Analysis Protocol and the Technical Noise Supplement
  • Caltrans GIS Soundwall Inventory, a listing of soundwalls built on the State Highway System
  • Noise abatement research, quieter pavements, truck noise mapping, noise measurement
  • Noise modeling support
  • Bioacoustics, pile driving noise and effects on fish and birds
  • Noise/vibration policy, guidance and special provisionss
  • Pile driving noise and wildlife effects
  • Quieter pavement and noise research
  • Soundwall inventory
  • Noise modeling


The Paleontology program develops policy and provides technical and statutory information, guidance documents, and specifications to assist the Districts/Regions with the identification, evaluation, and mitigation of paleontological resources

  • Project Paleontological support


Elizabeth Dooher - Office of Stormwater Program Implementation, Acting Office Chief

Bhaskar Joshi - Office of Stormwater Program Develeopment, Office Chief

Loi Nguyen - Office of Stormwater Fiscal Analysis, Office Chief

Stormwater Program staff provide quidance on CEQA/NEPA compliance for transportation-related water quality, erosion and sedimentation issues, Regional Water Quality Control Board Basin Plans and 401 and NPDES permits, State Water Resources Control Board Policies, and California water quality legislation. The Office develops Stormwater Best Management Practices, procedures, methods, and tools for the Department's Stormwater Program; and, manages the Stormwater budget and contract/procurement process.

  • Stormwater Monitoring/Characterization
  • Stormwater Applied Studies
  • Stormwater Contracting Support

Stormwater Program Implementation

  • Stormwater Policy and Guidance
  • SHOPP 335 Management
  • Stormwater Legislation/Regulation Coordination
  • Self Audit
  • Permit Compliance
  • WQA Gidance
  • Public education development and coordination
  • WQSWAT Administration
  • Stormwater Annual Reporting

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