The California Environmental Quality Act enforced by the state's Department of Fish and Wildlife provides guidelines regarding the protection of the environment. You may be required to apply for licenses and permits for your new development project through this agency. As a result, your request will more than likely involve a review to make sure it does not violate the act.
The goal of the CEQA is to limit, or at least mitigate, any potential damage to the environment your project could potentially cause. This is done through either a Negative Declaration, an Initial Study or an Environmental Impact Report. The circumstances more than likely dictate which method is used. The agency may publish the results for the public to see.
In fact, the public could become involved in the process through hearings, meetings or even the courts. All of this is done in an attempt to regulate your development activities to help ensure that the environment does not suffer any negative consequences through your project. If it turns out that your project may negatively impact the environment, mitigation efforts may still allow your project to move forward.
New development projects often enhance the lives of California's residents, and there needs to be a balance between providing for the community and protecting the environment. During this process, it may benefit you and the future of your project to be represented by counsel. This helps ensure that the proper procedures are followed and that your rights are protected throughout the process.
Source: wildlife.ca.gov, "A Summary of the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA)", Accessed on Oct. 1, 2017