Protect NEPA is a coalition of roughly thirty left-of-center civil rights and environmentalist groups assembled to oppose any dilution of the 50-year-old National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA).  Members of Protect NEPA claim that President Donald Trump is seeking to unravel the law to expedite border wall construction and strip away critical environmental protections that protect impoverished people from so-called “environmental racism.” 
National Environmental Policy Act
The National Environmental Policy Act was signed into law by President Richard Nixon in 1970 for the purpose of creating a review process for federal construction projects to weigh potential environmental impacts and allow community input. 
In 2020, President Trump announced changes to the act focusing on reducing the review time to primarily two years from the current average of 4.5 years with some infrastructure projects delayed for a decade. Proposed changes also seek to limit judicial review to expedite the process. Proponents of the changes cite the nearly 1,500 lawsuits filed during NEPA processes from 2001-2013. 
Protect NEPA was founded by the left-wing environmental organization the Partnership Project to oppose the Trump administration’s proposed changes.  It consists of left-of-center groups including the environmentalist organizations Earthjustice, the Natural Resources Defense Council, and the Center for Biological Diversity. These three groups filed nearly 400 lawsuits against the Trump administration, some of which are to delay border wall construction through the NEPA process. 
Other members of the coalition include the Sunrise Movement, the left-of-center environmentalist outfit and key supporter of the Green New Deal.  Protect NEPA claims that President Trump is attacking NEPA to benefit the conventional energy industry and corporate donors at the expense of clean air, water and Americans’ health and future. 
Steven Schima is the NEPA and Partnership Project campaign director. Schima has an extensive environmentalist and legal background including time with the United Nations and the Environmental Law Institute.  Schima also is a Senior Legislative Counsel for environmentalist law firm Earthjustice.