Twenty five years ago, Senator Jackson, in crafting NEPA and the National Land Use Planning Act, offered the United States an alternative path to resource protection: planning.164 "It is only in the past few years," Jackson wrote in 1971, "that the dangers of muddling through events and establishing environmental policy by inaction and default have been very widely perceived. Today, with the benefit of hindsight, it is easy to see that our governmental institutions have too often reacted only to crisis situations. We always seem to be calculating the short-term consequences of environmental mismanagement, but seldom the long-term consequences or the alternatives open to future action."165
Through NEPA, federal agencies are required to look forward and anticipate the
(Although the planning aspects of LUPA are clear, Jackson also saw NEPA as a planning tool. In a Memorandum to the Members of the Senate Committee on Interior and Insular Affairs written three years after the passage of NEPA, Jackson wrote: "The public has been most responsive to NEPA. It is the awareness of an informed citizenry that has enabled us to make NEPA an effective and operational planning tool." Congressional Research Service, Environmental Policy Division, National Environmental Policy Act of 1969; An Analysis Of Proposed Legislative Modifications, 93d Congress, 1st Session, (1973) at (v).
(Henry M. Jackson, Environmental Policy and the Congress, 11 Natural Resource Journal 403, 405 (1971).