Notice of Intent To Prepare an Environmental Impact Statement and To Initiate Scoping for a Federal Coal Lease Application Filed by Alton Coal Development LLC, Utah, 68834-68835 [E6-20044]

Download as PDF 68834 Federal Register / Vol. 71, No. 228 / Tuesday, November 28, 2006 / Notices representatives or officials of organizations or businesses, will be made available for public inspection in their entirety. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: For information on the NEPA aspect of the project, please call Teri Deakins at 307– 352–0211. For information on coal leasing, please call Joanna NaraKloepper, Project Leader, at 307–352– 0321. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: On March 24, 2004, BBCC filed an LBA with the BLM, to access Federal coal reserves adjacent to their existing Black Butte Mine in Sweetwater County, Wyoming. The LBA tract is approximately 28 miles southeast of Rock Springs, Wyoming, and comprises the following public lands: ycherry on PROD1PC61 with NOTICES T. 17 N., R. 101 W., 6th PM, Wyoming sec. 2: Lots 3, 4, SW1⁄4NW1⁄4; sec. 4: Lots 1, 2, S1⁄2NE1⁄4, SE1⁄4NW1⁄4, NE1⁄4SW1⁄4, S1⁄2SW1⁄4, SE1⁄4; sec. 10: NW1⁄4, N1⁄2SW1⁄4; T. 18 N., R. 101 W., 6th PM, Wyoming sec. 34: E1⁄2, E1⁄2NW1⁄4, SW1⁄4. Containing 1,399.48 acres, more or less. The Black Butte Coal Mine started operations in the late 1970s and continues to operate today. Additional mineable coal reserves are needed to meet the growing regional demand for electricity, including electricity supplied by the Jim Bridger Power Plant. BBCC estimates that approximately 34.6 million tons of inplace coal reserves are present in the Upper Cretaceous Almond Formation within the project area. The Office of Surface Mining Reclamation Enforcement (OSMRE) is a cooperating agency in the preparation of this Environmental Impact Statement (EIS). If the tract is leased as a maintenance tract, the new lease must be incorporated into the existing mining and reclamation plan for the adjacent mine. The Secretary of the Interior must approve the revision to the Mineral Leasing Act (MLA) mining plan before the Federal coal can be mined. If the tract is leased, OSMRE is the Federal agency that would be responsible for recommending approval, approval with conditions, or disapproval of the revised MLA mining plan to the Secretary of the Interior. On January 7, 2005, the BLM published its Notice of Intent (NOI) to prepare an EIS for the Pit 14 Coal LBA (WYW160394) in the Federal Register. On March 24, 2006, both the BLM and the EPA published NOAs of the Draft Environmental Impact Statement (DEIS) for the Pit 14 Coal LBA project for a 60day comment and review period. Under the provisions of Federal coal VerDate Aug<31>2005 15:42 Nov 27, 2006 Jkt 211001 regulations at 43 Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) 3425.4, a public hearing was held at 2 p.m. on May 10, 2006, at the BLM Rock Springs Field Office, Rock Springs, WY. The purpose of the hearing was to solicit comments on the DEIS, fair market value, and the maximum economic recovery of the Federal coal. Seven comment letters on the DEIS were received during the review and comment period, and two statements were recorded during the public coal hearing (of which one statement was subsequently submitted as a comment letter). The FEIS analyzes two alternatives in detail: 1. The Proposed Action. This alternative analyzes the impacts of leasing Federal coal and the impacts associated with surface mining. 2. The No Action Alternative. This alternative would reject the coal lease application as submitted. BLM’s preferred alternative is the Proposed Action. The Proposed Action is in conformance with the Green River Resource Management Plan (1997). A Record of Decision (ROD) will be prepared after the close of the comment period for the FEIS. Comments received on the FEIS will be considered during preparation of the ROD. Dated: September 22, 2006. Robert A. Bennett, State Director. [FR Doc. E6–20045 Filed 11–27–06; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4310–22–P DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR Bureau of Land Management [UT–110–1320–EL, UTU 081895] Notice of Intent To Prepare an Environmental Impact Statement and To Initiate Scoping for a Federal Coal Lease Application Filed by Alton Coal Development LLC, Utah Bureau of Land Management, Interior. ACTION: Notice of Intent to Prepare an Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) and to initiate scoping for a Federal Coal Lease Application (LBA) Fielded by Alton Coal Development LLC, near Alton, Utah. AGENCY: SUMMARY: Pursuant to Section 102 (2) (C) of the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) of 1969, as amended, the Bureau of Land Management (BLM), Kanab Field Office announces its intent to prepare an EIS and is soliciting public comments regarding issues and resource information on the potential PO 00000 Frm 00041 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 impacts of a proposal to primarily surface mine Federal coal in the vicinity of Alton, Utah as requested by Alton coal Development LLC (Alton LLC) in LBA case number UTU 081895 and in conformance with the provisions of 43 Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) 3425.1. This notice initiates the public scoping process. Comments and resource information should be submitted within 90 days of publication of this notice in the Federal Register. The BLM will host public scoping meetings in the following locations: Alton, Kanab, Panguitch, Cedar City, and Salt Lake City, Utah. Times and dates of these meetings will be announced through the Utah BLM Web site (http://www.ut.blm.gov), press releases, local newspapers, and other media. At the scoping meetings, the public is invited to submit comments and resource information, and identify issues or concerns to be considered in the LBA process. The BLM will announce public meetings and other opportunities to submit comments on this project at least 15 days prior to the event. ADDRESSES: Please submit written comments or concerns to the BLM Kanab Field Office, Attn: Keith Rigtrup, 318 North 100 East, Kanab, Utah 84741. Written comments or resource information may also be hand-delivered to the BLM Kanab Field Office or sent by facsimile to the attention of Keith Rigtrup at 435–644–4620. Comments may be sent electronically to UT_Kanab_Altoncoal@blm.gov; please put Alton Coal Lease/Keith Rigtrup in the subject line. Members of the public may examine documents pertinent to this proposal by visiting the Kanab Field Office during its business hours (7:45 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.), Monday through Friday, except holidays. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Keith Rigtrup, BLM Kanab Field Office, 318 North 100 East, Kanab, Utah 84741 or by telephone at 435–644–4600. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: An application to lease Federal coal near the Town of Alton, Utah was filed with BLM on November 12, 2004, by Alton LLC. The Utah State Office Solid Minerals Branch reviewed this lease application, delineated the boundaries of the tract, and recommended that the BLM process it. This LBA is called the Alton Tract and is currently delineated to include approximately 46 million tons of in-place Federal coal underlying the following lands in Kane County, Utah: DATES: T. 39 S., R. 5 W., SLM, Utah E:\FR\FM\28NON1.SGM 28NON1 Federal Register / Vol. 71, No. 228 / Tuesday, November 28, 2006 / Notices ycherry on PROD1PC61 with NOTICES sec. 7, SE1⁄4SW1⁄4, S1⁄2SE1⁄4; sec. 18, lots 3 and 4, E1⁄2, E1⁄2W1⁄2; sec. 19, lots 1 through 4, NE1⁄4, E1⁄2W1⁄2, N1⁄2SE1⁄4, SE1⁄4SE1⁄4; sec. 20, lots 4 and 5, N1⁄2SW1⁄4; sec. 30, lots 2 through 4, SW1⁄4NE1⁄4, SE1⁄4NW1⁄4, E1⁄2SW1⁄4, W1⁄2SE1⁄4; sec. 31, lots 1 through 3, NE1⁄4, E1⁄2NW1⁄4, NE1⁄4SW1⁄4, N1⁄2SE1⁄4; T. 39 S., R. 6 W., SLM, Utah sec. 12, SW1⁄4, W1⁄2SE1⁄4; sec. 13, NW1⁄4NE1⁄4, N1⁄2NW1⁄4, SE1⁄4NW1⁄4, SE1⁄4; sec. 24, NE1⁄4, N1⁄2NW1⁄4, SE1⁄4NW1⁄4, E1⁄2SW1⁄4, N1⁄2SE1⁄4, SE1⁄4SE1⁄4; sec. 25, E1⁄2NE1⁄4, SW1⁄4NE1⁄4, SE1⁄4. Containing 3,581.27 acres more or less. The Office of Surface Mining (OSM) will be a cooperating agency in the preparation of the EIS. If the Alton Tract is leased, the OSM is the Federal agency that would prepare the documentation for the Assistant Secretary, Land and Minerals Management decision to approve, approve with conditions, or disapprove the Mining Plan. The BLM will provide interested parties the opportunity to submit comments or relevant information or both. This information will help BLM identify issues to be considered in preparing a draft EIS for the Alton Tract. Specific issues that have been identified at this time include: potential impacts in the vicinity of the tract to city and county facilities and occupied residences; livestock grazing, big game herds and hunting, sage grouse, listed threatened and endangered species, alluvial valley floors; potential health issues related to blasting operations conducted by the mines to remove overburden and coal; site-specific and cumulative impacts on air and water quantity/quality; and the need to consider the cumulative impacts of coal leasing decisions combined with other existing and proposed development in the affected areas. The area included within this lease application was part of a larger area analyzed in response to a petition filed under Section 522 of the Surface Mining Control and Reclamation Act of 1977 to have federal lands declared unsuitable for all types of surface coal mining operations. The petition sought to have the lands declared unsuitable for coal mining because of impacts to air quality, visual resources, fish and wildlife resources, geologic features within Bryce Canyon National Park, and hydrology. The petitioners also questioned whether the lands could be reclaimed after mining. After an extensive evaluation, which included input from the public and a combined petition evaluation and environmental impact statement, the Secretary of the Interior, on December 16, 1980, VerDate Aug<31>2005 15:42 Nov 27, 2006 Jkt 211001 determined that the coal lands included in this lease application were not unsuitable for surface coal mining operations. The Secretary’s decision is documented in a secretarial decision document entitled, ‘‘Petition to Designate Certain Federal Lands in Southern Utah Unsuitable for Surface Coal Mining’’ (OSM Reference No: 79– 5–001). Alton LLC has applied for a permit with the State of Utah to mine fee coal on private lands adjacent to this federal tract. That permit application is in progress and this federal tract, if approved, would be a continuation of that mining operation. Your response is important and will be considered in the EIS process. If you respond, the BLM will keep you informed of the availability of environmental documents that address impacts that might occur from this proposal. Please note that comments and information submitted regarding this project including names, electronic mail addresses, and street addresses of the respondents will be available for public review and disclosure at the Kanab Field Office. If you comment as a private individual in your personal capacity, you may ask us to withhold personal identifying information from the public. You must do so prominently in writing at the beginning of your comments and must tell us precisely what you want us to withhold. You also must explain in detail why releasing that personal identifying information to the public would constitute a clearly unwarranted invasion of privacy. Individuals may request confidentiality. General assertions that are not supported by specific facts will not meet that burden. We will withhold personal identifying information from release to the public in response to your request only where, in our judgment, you present sufficient factual justification for our doing so under current laws, regulations, and court decisions. Typically, notwithstanding your request, in all but the most exceptional circumstances, we will release to the public all of the personal identifying information that you submit. If you comment as or on behalf of an organization or business, we will release your comments to the public in their entirety, including all personal identifying information. We will not consider a request from an organization or business, or anyone commenting on behalf of an organization or business, that we withhold any personal PO 00000 Frm 00042 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 68835 identifying information from release to the public. Rex Smart, Kanab Field Manager. [FR Doc. E6–20044 Filed 11–27–06; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4310–$$–P DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR Bureau of Land Management [WY–957–07–1910–BJ–5RKC] Notice of Filing of Plats of Survey, Wyoming Bureau of Land Management, Interior. ACTION: Notice of filing of plats of survey, Wyoming. AGENCY: SUMMARY: The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) is scheduled to file the plat of survey of the lands described below thirty (30) calendar days from the date of this publication in the BLM Wyoming State Office, Cheyenne, Wyoming. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Bureau of Land Management, 5353 Yellowstone Road, P.O. Box 1828, Cheyenne, Wyoming 82003. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: This survey was executed at the request of the Bureau of Indian Affairs and is necessary for the management of these lands. The lands surveyed are: The plat and field notes representing the dependent resurvey of a portion of the subdivisional lines and the survey of the subdivision of section 22, and the metes and bounds surveys of Parcels A and B, section 22, Township 42 North, Range 95 West, of the Sixth Principal Meridian, Wyoming, was accepted November 9, 2006. The plat and field notes representing the dependent resurvey of a portion of the south boundary of the Wind River Indian Reservation and subdivisional lines, and the survey of the subdivision of section 20, and the metes and bounds survey of certain lots in section 20, Township 2 South, Range 1 West, Wind River Meridian, Wyoming, was accepted November 9, 2006. The plat and field notes representing the dependent survey of portions of the north boundary, subdivisional lines, subdivision of sections and certain tracts, and the survey of the subdivision of section 11, and the metes and bounds surveys of certain parcels, Township 3 North, Range 2 East, of the Wind River Meridian, Wyoming, was accepted November 17, 2006. E:\FR\FM\28NON1.SGM 28NON1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 71, Number 228 (Tuesday, November 28, 2006)]
[Notices]
[Pages 68834-68835]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: E6-20044]


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DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR

Bureau of Land Management

[UT-110-1320-EL, UTU 081895]


Notice of Intent To Prepare an Environmental Impact Statement and 
To Initiate Scoping for a Federal Coal Lease Application Filed by Alton 
Coal Development LLC, Utah

AGENCY: Bureau of Land Management, Interior.

ACTION: Notice of Intent to Prepare an Environmental Impact Statement 
(EIS) and to initiate scoping for a Federal Coal Lease Application 
(LBA) Fielded by Alton Coal Development LLC, near Alton, Utah.

-----------------------------------------------------------------------

SUMMARY: Pursuant to Section 102 (2) (C) of the National Environmental 
Policy Act (NEPA) of 1969, as amended, the Bureau of Land Management 
(BLM), Kanab Field Office announces its intent to prepare an EIS and is 
soliciting public comments regarding issues and resource information on 
the potential impacts of a proposal to primarily surface mine Federal 
coal in the vicinity of Alton, Utah as requested by Alton coal 
Development LLC (Alton LLC) in LBA case number UTU 081895 and in 
conformance with the provisions of 43 Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) 
3425.1.

DATES: This notice initiates the public scoping process. Comments and 
resource information should be submitted within 90 days of publication 
of this notice in the Federal Register. The BLM will host public 
scoping meetings in the following locations: Alton, Kanab, Panguitch, 
Cedar City, and Salt Lake City, Utah. Times and dates of these meetings 
will be announced through the Utah BLM Web site (http://
www.ut.blm.gov), press releases, local newspapers, and other media. At 
the scoping meetings, the public is invited to submit comments and 
resource information, and identify issues or concerns to be considered 
in the LBA process. The BLM will announce public meetings and other 
opportunities to submit comments on this project at least 15 days prior 
to the event.

ADDRESSES: Please submit written comments or concerns to the BLM Kanab 
Field Office, Attn: Keith Rigtrup, 318 North 100 East, Kanab, Utah 
84741. Written comments or resource information may also be hand-
delivered to the BLM Kanab Field Office or sent by facsimile to the 
attention of Keith Rigtrup at 435-644-4620. Comments may be sent 
electronically to UT--Kanab--Altoncoal@blm.gov; please put Alton Coal 
Lease/Keith Rigtrup in the subject line. Members of the public may 
examine documents pertinent to this proposal by visiting the Kanab 
Field Office during its business hours (7:45 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.), Monday 
through Friday, except holidays.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Keith Rigtrup, BLM Kanab Field Office, 
318 North 100 East, Kanab, Utah 84741 or by telephone at 435-644-4600.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: An application to lease Federal coal near 
the Town of Alton, Utah was filed with BLM on November 12, 2004, by 
Alton LLC. The Utah State Office Solid Minerals Branch reviewed this 
lease application, delineated the boundaries of the tract, and 
recommended that the BLM process it. This LBA is called the Alton Tract 
and is currently delineated to include approximately 46 million tons of 
in-place Federal coal underlying the following lands in Kane County, 
Utah:

T. 39 S., R. 5 W., SLM, Utah

[[Page 68835]]

    sec. 7, SE\1/4\SW\1/4\, S\1/2\SE\1/4\;
    sec. 18, lots 3 and 4, E\1/2\, E\1/2\W\1/2\;
    sec. 19, lots 1 through 4, NE\1/4\, E\1/2\W\1/2\, N\1/2\SE\1/4\, 
SE\1/4\SE\1/4\;
    sec. 20, lots 4 and 5, N\1/2\SW\1/4\;
    sec. 30, lots 2 through 4, SW\1/4\NE\1/4\, SE\1/4\NW\1/4\, E\1/
2\SW\1/4\, W\1/2\SE\1/4\;
    sec. 31, lots 1 through 3, NE\1/4\, E\1/2\NW\1/4\, NE\1/4\SW\1/
4\, N\1/2\SE\1/4\;
T. 39 S., R. 6 W., SLM, Utah
    sec. 12, SW\1/4\, W\1/2\SE\1/4\;
    sec. 13, NW\1/4\NE\1/4\, N\1/2\NW\1/4\, SE\1/4\NW\1/4\, SE\1/4\;
    sec. 24, NE\1/4\, N\1/2\NW\1/4\, SE\1/4\NW\1/4\, E\1/2\SW\1/4\, 
N\1/2\SE\1/4\, SE\1/4\SE\1/4\;
    sec. 25, E\1/2\NE\1/4\, SW\1/4\NE\1/4\, SE\1/4\.

    Containing 3,581.27 acres more or less.

    The Office of Surface Mining (OSM) will be a cooperating agency in 
the preparation of the EIS.
    If the Alton Tract is leased, the OSM is the Federal agency that 
would prepare the documentation for the Assistant Secretary, Land and 
Minerals Management decision to approve, approve with conditions, or 
disapprove the Mining Plan. The BLM will provide interested parties the 
opportunity to submit comments or relevant information or both. This 
information will help BLM identify issues to be considered in preparing 
a draft EIS for the Alton Tract. Specific issues that have been 
identified at this time include: potential impacts in the vicinity of 
the tract to city and county facilities and occupied residences; 
livestock grazing, big game herds and hunting, sage grouse, listed 
threatened and endangered species, alluvial valley floors; potential 
health issues related to blasting operations conducted by the mines to 
remove overburden and coal; site-specific and cumulative impacts on air 
and water quantity/quality; and the need to consider the cumulative 
impacts of coal leasing decisions combined with other existing and 
proposed development in the affected areas.
    The area included within this lease application was part of a 
larger area analyzed in response to a petition filed under Section 522 
of the Surface Mining Control and Reclamation Act of 1977 to have 
federal lands declared unsuitable for all types of surface coal mining 
operations. The petition sought to have the lands declared unsuitable 
for coal mining because of impacts to air quality, visual resources, 
fish and wildlife resources, geologic features within Bryce Canyon 
National Park, and hydrology. The petitioners also questioned whether 
the lands could be reclaimed after mining. After an extensive 
evaluation, which included input from the public and a combined 
petition evaluation and environmental impact statement, the Secretary 
of the Interior, on December 16, 1980, determined that the coal lands 
included in this lease application were not unsuitable for surface coal 
mining operations. The Secretary's decision is documented in a 
secretarial decision document entitled, ``Petition to Designate Certain 
Federal Lands in Southern Utah Unsuitable for Surface Coal Mining'' 
(OSM Reference No: 79-5-001).
    Alton LLC has applied for a permit with the State of Utah to mine 
fee coal on private lands adjacent to this federal tract. That permit 
application is in progress and this federal tract, if approved, would 
be a continuation of that mining operation.
    Your response is important and will be considered in the EIS 
process. If you respond, the BLM will keep you informed of the 
availability of environmental documents that address impacts that might 
occur from this proposal.
    Please note that comments and information submitted regarding this 
project including names, electronic mail addresses, and street 
addresses of the respondents will be available for public review and 
disclosure at the Kanab Field Office.
    If you comment as a private individual in your personal capacity, 
you may ask us to withhold personal identifying information from the 
public. You must do so prominently in writing at the beginning of your 
comments and must tell us precisely what you want us to withhold. You 
also must explain in detail why releasing that personal identifying 
information to the public would constitute a clearly unwarranted 
invasion of privacy. Individuals may request confidentiality. General 
assertions that are not supported by specific facts will not meet that 
burden.
    We will withhold personal identifying information from release to 
the public in response to your request only where, in our judgment, you 
present sufficient factual justification for our doing so under current 
laws, regulations, and court decisions. Typically, notwithstanding your 
request, in all but the most exceptional circumstances, we will release 
to the public all of the personal identifying information that you 
submit.
    If you comment as or on behalf of an organization or business, we 
will release your comments to the public in their entirety, including 
all personal identifying information. We will not consider a request 
from an organization or business, or anyone commenting on behalf of an 
organization or business, that we withhold any personal identifying 
information from release to the public.

Rex Smart,
Kanab Field Manager.
 [FR Doc. E6-20044 Filed 11-27-06; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 4310-$$-P