Notice of Availability of Draft Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement for the Pinedale Anticline Oil and Gas Exploration and Development Project, Sublette County, WY, 75576-75578 [E6-21309]

Download as PDF 75576 Federal Register / Vol. 71, No. 241 / Friday, December 15, 2006 / Notices Reasons: Extensive deterioration [FR Doc. E6–21155 Filed 12–14–06; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4210–67–P DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR Office of the Secretary Exxon Valdez Oil Spill Trustee Council; Notice of Meeting Office of the Secretary, Department of the Interior. ACTION: Notice of meeting. AGENCY: SUMMARY: The Department of the Interior, Office of the Secretary is announcing a public meeting of the Exxon Valdez Oil Spill Public Advisory Committee. DATES: January 25, 2007, at 8:30 a.m. ADDRESSES: Exxon Valdez Oil Spill Trustee Council Office, 441 West 5th Avenue, Suite 500, Anchorage, Alaska. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Douglas Mutter, Department of the Interior, Office of Environmental Policy and Compliance, 1689 ‘‘C’’ Street, Suite 119, Anchorage, Alaska, 99501, (907) 271–5011. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: The Public Advisory Committee was created by Paragraph V.A.4 of the Memorandum of Agreement and Consent Decree entered into by the United States of America and the State of Alaska on August 27, 1991, and approved by the United States District Court for the District of Alaska in settlement of United States of America v. State of Alaska, Civil Action No. A91–081 CV. The meeting agenda will include review of the proposed invitation to submit proposals for the fiscal year 2008 work plan, an update on the herring restoration effort, and an orientation for new Public Advisory Committee members. Willie R. Taylor, Director, Office of Environmental Policy and Compliance. [FR Doc. E6–21431 Filed 12–14–06; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4310–RG–P DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR Bureau of Land Management mstockstill on PROD1PC61 with NOTICES [F–14838–B, F–14838–B2; AK–964–1410– KC–P] Alaska Native Claims Selection Bureau of Land Management, Interior. ACTION: Notice of decision approving lands for conveyance. AGENCY: VerDate Aug<31>2005 15:47 Dec 14, 2006 Jkt 211001 SUMMARY: As required by 43 CFR 2650.7(d), notice is hereby given that an appealable decision approving lands for conveyance pursuant to the Alaska Native Claims Settlement Act will be issued to Bethel Native Corporation. The lands are in the vicinity of the Kwethluk River at Three Step Mountain and the Tuluksak River, approximately 30 miles east of the Native village of Tuluksak, Alaska, and are located in: Seward Meridian, Alaska T. 10 N., R. 61 W., Secs. 5, 6, and 7; Secs. 8, 16, 17, and 18. Containing approximately 4,198 acres. T. 11 N., R. 61 W., Secs. 3 to 8, inclusive; Secs. 17 to 20, inclusive; Secs. 30 and 31. Containing approximately 7,524 acres. T. 12 N., R. 61 W., Secs. 31 to 34, inclusive. Containing approximately 2,528 acres. T. 10 N., R. 62 W., Secs. 1, 12, and 13. Containing approximately 1,747 acres. T. 5 N., R. 68 W., Secs. 1, 2, and 3; Secs. 10 to 15, inclusive. Containing approximately 5,590 acres. Aggregating approximately 21,587 acres. The subsurface estate in these lands, except that in the lands described below, will be conveyed to Calista Corporation when the surface estate is conveyed to Bethel Native Corporation: Seward Meridian, Alaska T. 10 N., R. 61 W., Secs. 7 and 8; Secs. 16, 17, and 18. Containing approximately 2,938 acres. T. 10 N., R. 62 W., Secs. 12 and 13. Containing approximately 1,107 acres. Aggregating approximately 4,045 acres. Calista Corporation received title to the subsurface estate in the lands described immediately above in a prior conveyance. Notice of the decision will also be published four times in the Tundra Drums. The time limits for filing an appeal are: 1. Any party claiming a property interest which is adversely affected by the decision shall have until January 16, 2007 to file an appeal. 2. Parties receiving service of the decision by certified mail shall have 30 days from the date of receipt to file an appeal. Parties who do not file an appeal in accordance with the requirements of 43 DATES: PO 00000 Frm 00102 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 CFR Part 4, Subpart E, shall be deemed to have waived their rights. ADDRESSES: A copy of the decision may be obtained from: Bureau of Land Management, Alaska State Office, 222 West Seventh Avenue, #13, Anchorage, Alaska 99513–7599. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION, CONTACT: The Bureau of Land Management by phone at 907–271–5960, or by e-mail at ak.blm.conveyance@ak.blm.gov. Persons who use a telecommunication device (TTD) may call the Federal Information Relay Service (FIRS) at 1–800–877– 8330, 24 hours a day, seven days a week, to contact the Bureau of Land Management. Kara Marciniec, Land Law Examiner, Branch of Adjudication II. [FR Doc. E6–21348 Filed 12–14–06; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4310–$$–P DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR Bureau of Land Management [WY–100–06–1310–DB] Notice of Availability of Draft Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement for the Pinedale Anticline Oil and Gas Exploration and Development Project, Sublette County, WY Bureau of Land Management, Interior. ACTION: Notice of availability. AGENCY: SUMMARY: Under Section 102(2)(C) of the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) of 1969, as amended, the Bureau of Land Management (BLM), Pinedale Field Office announces the availability of a Draft Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement (SEIS) on a proposal for long-term development of natural gas resources in the Pinedale Anticline Project Area (PAPA). The BLM published the Notice of Intent (NOI) to prepare a SEIS for the Pinedale Anticline Project in the Federal Register on October 21, 2005. DATES: The Draft SEIS will be available for public comment for 60 days starting on the date the Environmental Protection Agency publishes its Notice of Availability in the Federal Register. A separate CALGRID airborne ozone report will be published subsequent to the release of the Draft SEIS. The BLM can best utilize your comments on the supplemental information if they are received within the 60 day review period provided above. To provide the public with an opportunity to review the proposal and project information, E:\FR\FM\15DEN1.SGM 15DEN1 mstockstill on PROD1PC61 with NOTICES Federal Register / Vol. 71, No. 241 / Friday, December 15, 2006 / Notices the BLM will host a meeting in Pinedale, Wyoming. The BLM will notify the public of the meeting date, time, and location at least 15 days prior to the event. Announcement of the public meeting will be made by news release to the media, individual letter mailings, and posting on the BLM website, listed below, if it is available. ADDRESSES: Please send written comments or resource information to the Bureau of Land Management, Pinedale Field Office, Matt Anderson, Project Manager, 432 East Mill Street, P.O. Box 768, Pinedale, Wyoming 82941. Electronic mail may be sent to: WYMail_PAPA_YRA@blm.gov. The SEIS will be posted at http:// web.wy.blm.gov when available. Your response is important and will be considered in the environmental analysis process. If you do respond, we will keep you informed of decisions resulting from this analysis. Please note that public comments and information submitted regarding this project including names, e-mail addresses, and street addresses of the respondents will be available for public review and disclosure at the above address during regular business hours (7:45 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.), Monday through Friday, except holidays. Individual respondents may request confidentiality. If you wish to withhold your name, e-mail address, or street address from public review or from disclosure under the Freedom of Information Act, you must state this plainly at the beginning of your written comment. Such requests will be honored to the extent allowed by the law. All submissions from organizations or businesses, and from individuals identifying themselves as representatives or officials of organizations or businesses, will be made available for public inspection in their entirety. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Bureau of Land Management, Matt Anderson, Project Manager at (307) 367– 5328, or by e-mail: matt_anderson@blm.gov; or by the address above. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: The BLM conducted NEPA analysis and issued a Record of Decision (ROD) for the Pinedale Anticline Oil and Gas Exploration and Development Project in July 2000 in response to the increasing number of operators requesting approval to drill and develop oil and gas wells on the Pinedale Anticline. The NEPA document analyzed three alternatives with different levels of required mitigation, and for each alternative, there were three exploration and development scenarios based on the VerDate Aug<31>2005 15:47 Dec 14, 2006 Jkt 211001 density and distribution of well pad development. The PAPA ROD established seasonal restrictions on natural gas development to minimize adverse effects on wintering big game and sage-grouse during breeding and nesting. The PAPA Final EIS did not include analysis of the potential impacts of oil and gas development activities (specifically drilling and completions) to big game on crucial winter ranges during the period of November 15 through April 30. Exceptions to this winter closure period were to be based on current conditions such as the presence of wintering animals or depth of snow cover on a case-by-case basis. Starting in the winter of 2002–2003, the BLM authorized Questar Exploration and Production (Questar) to continue gas development operations at one well pad within big game crucial winter range. Questar was required to cooperate fully with the Wyoming Game and Fish Department in the study of the impact of its operations by supporting the ongoing Sublette Mule Deer Study. In November 2004, the BLM issued a Decision Record allowing Questar to expand their development activities in crucial mule deer winter range during winter while continuing to support the Sublette Mule Deer Study (Questar Year-Round Drilling Proposal Environmental Assessment, November 2004). Since then, other operators within the PAPA have expressed interest in conducting gas development activities including year-round drilling within big game crucial winter range. In the summer of 2005, Anschutz, Shell Exploration and Production Company (Shell), and Ultra Resources Inc. (Ultra) submitted a proposal to the BLM for a year-round drilling demonstration project on three well pads within their leaseholds during 1 year. In September 2005, the BLM issued a Decision Record to allow them to proceed (ASU YearRound Drilling Demonstration Project, September 2005). The Decision Record allowed each of the three operators to drill year-round on one well pad each on crucial winter range during the winter of 2005–2006. The result of that project led to the current proposal and to BLM’s determination that a Supplemental EIS is necessary. The PAPA encompasses approximately 198,034 acres of primarily Federal lands (nearly 80 percent), and State and private land. Approximately 83 percent of the mineral estate underlying the PAPA is Federally-owned. Alternatives: The BLM has received a proposal for continued development of natural gas resources in the PAPA from Questar, Shell, and Ultra, representing PO 00000 Frm 00103 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 75577 themselves and others who agree to participate, collectively referred to as the Operators. There are currently approximately 460 producing wells in the PAPA; the Operators’ proposal would exceed the drilling activity analyzed in the PAPA ROD (2000). The NEPA and air quality impact analyses supporting the PAPA ROD (2000) addressed 900 total wells and 700 producing well pads. The PAPA ROD stated that if the level of development exceeded that analyzed in the Draft EIS, that BLM would conduct additional environmental analysis. The BLM has identified the following resources that may be adversely impacted beyond the level analyzed in the PAPA ROD and the resources will be analyzed in the Draft SEIS: surface and ground water; air quality; wildlife and their habitats; vegetation; visual resources; transportation; noxious weeds; grazing; cultural and paleontological; wetland and riparian; threatened and endangered animal and plant species; and socioeconomics. In addition to the proposed action, the Draft SEIS analyzes the effects of the no-action alternative and the BLM preferred alternative, which are summarized below. Proposed Action: The Operators propose to conduct year-round drilling and completions in Concentrated Development Areas within a Core Development Area (coinciding with the Anticline Crest) of the PAPA. The Operators’ proposed development includes construction of new well pads and substantial expansion of existing well pads to allow for multiple wells drilled from a pad. The Operators propose an additional 4,399 wells on approximately 10-acre bottom hole spacing from an additional 250 well pads to more effectively recover the mineral resource. In addition, the BLM has determined that there is a need for new pipeline corridors between the PAPA and processing plants in southwestern Wyoming. Therefore, the SEIS includes specific analysis for two additional gas sales pipelines from the PAPA, one to the Granger and Blacks Fork gas plant and one from the PAPA to the Opal and Pioneer gas plant. Concurrent with the drilling and development activities, the Operators propose 3:1 compensatory mitigation to offset wildlife impacts and to study and evaluate the effects of oil and gas activities on big game using crucial winter ranges and sage-grouse using seasonal habitats during the winter months (November 15 through April 30). No Action Alternative: This alternative would continue E:\FR\FM\15DEN1.SGM 15DEN1 75578 Federal Register / Vol. 71, No. 241 / Friday, December 15, 2006 / Notices development within the PAPA as approved in the PAPA ROD and subsequent environmental documents and would not consider the Operators’ proposal to: provide compensatory mitigation; minimize habitat fragmentation; and maximize resource recovery through multi-well pads and directional drilling. BLM Preferred Alternative: This alternative analyzes the same number of drilled wells, pad expansions, new well pads, proposed compensatory mitigation, and pipeline routes as the proposed action with limitations on where year-round drilling could occur at any one time within a core development area. The preferred alternative also reduces the size of the core development area from the proposed action. Dated: September 22, 2006. Robert A. Bennett, State Director. [FR Doc. E6–21309 Filed 12–14–06; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4310–22–P DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR Bureau of Land Management [AZ 320–06–1610–DP–091A–241E] Notice of Availability of Yuma Field Office Draft Resource Management Plan and Draft Environmental Impact Statement Bureau of Land Management, Interior. ACTION: Notice of Availability (NOA) of Yuma Field Office (YFO) Draft Resource Management Plan and Draft Environmental Impact Statement (DRMP/DEIS). mstockstill on PROD1PC61 with NOTICES AGENCY: SUMMARY: In accordance with the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969 (NEPA, 42 U.S.C. 4321 et seq.) and the Federal Land Policy and Management Act of 1976 (FLPMA, 43 U.S.C. 1701 et seq.), the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) has prepared a Draft Resource Management Plan and Draft Environmental Impact Statement (DRMP/DEIS) for the Yuma Field Office (YFO), Arizona, and by this notice is announcing the opening of the public review and comment period. DATES: Written comments on the DRMP/ DEIS will be accepted for 90 days following the date the Environmental Protection Agency publishes its NOA in the Federal Register. Future meetings or hearings and any other public involvement activities will be announced at least 15 days in advance through local media. VerDate Aug<31>2005 15:47 Dec 14, 2006 Jkt 211001 Written comments may be mailed to Rebecca Heick, Bureau of Land Management, Yuma Field Office, 2555 East Gila Ridge Road, Yuma, Arizona 85365 or by e-mail at AZ_YM_RMP@blm.gov. You may also hand-deliver comments to the above listed address. A minimum of five public meetings will be held during the 90-day public review and comment period during which oral comments will be accepted. Exact dates, places, and times of public meetings will be posted on the BLM Arizona Web page at http://www.blm.gov/az/, news releases and Planning Bulletin, or you may contact Micki Bailey at (928) 317–3215, for further information. Public comments, including names and street addresses of respondents, will be available for public review at the Bureau of Land Management, Yuma Field Office, 2555 East Gila Ridge Road, Yuma, Arizona 85365, during regular business hours (8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.), Monday through Friday, except holidays. Individual respondents may request confidentiality. If you wish to withhold your name or street address from public review or from disclosure under the Freedom of Information Act, you must state this prominently at the beginning of your comments. Such requests will be honored to the extent allowed by law. All submissions from organizations or businesses, and from individuals identifying themselves as representatives or officials of organizations or businesses, will be made available for public inspection in their entirety. ADDRESSES: FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Micki Bailey, Planning and Environmental Coordinator, Bureau of Land Management, Yuma Field Office, 2555 East Gila Ridge Road, Yuma, Arizona 85365; telephone (928) 317– 3200. A copy of the YFO DRMP/DEIS is available for review via the internet from a link at http://www.blm.gov/az/LUP/ planning.htm (subject to change), electronic (on CD-ROM), and paper at the BLM YFO. Electronic (on CD-ROM) and paper copies may also be obtained by contacting Micki Bailey at the aforementioned address and phone number. The planning area encompasses more than 1.3 million acres of BLMadministered public land. The DRMP/ DEIS includes strategies for protecting and preserving the biological, cultural, recreational, geological, educational, scientific, and scenic values that balance multiple uses of the BLM- SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: PO 00000 Frm 00104 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 administered lands throughout the YFO planning area. The agency-preferred alternative attempts to accomplish the above while achieving consistency among the Bureau of Reclamation, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Arizona Department of Transportation, Arizona State Land Department, Arizona Game and Fish Department, California Department of Fish and Game, the BLM, and other land managing agencies within the boundaries of the planning area. The range of alternatives in this draft evaluates planning decisions brought forward from the current BLM planning documents, the Yuma District Resource Management Plan (1987), the Lower Gila South Resource Management Plan (1988), and the Lower Gila North Management Framework Plan (1983). The agency-preferred alternative identifies one new proposed Area of Critical Environmental Concern (ACEC): Dripping Springs Natural and Cultural ACEC (11,700 acres). One existing ACEC would be expanded under the agencypreferred alternative: Gila River Cultural ACEC (3,700 to 28,500 acres). The Gila River Cultural ACEC would be renamed the Sears Point Cultural ACEC. A total of seven ACECs are represented within the [proposed] range of alternatives. The existing Big Maria Mountains Cultural ACEC (4,500 acres) would be carried forward within Alternatives A, B, C, and E. An expansion of this ACEC is proposed within Alternative D (from 4,500 acres to 9,200 acres). Dripping Springs Natural and Cultural ACEC is proposed within Alternatives C (11,700 acres), D (9,800 acres), and E (11,700 acres). The Gila River Terraces and Trails Cultural ACEC is proposed within Alternative D only (140,400 acres). The Limitrophe is proposed as an ACEC within Alternative D only (4,500 acres). Palomas Plain Natural ACEC is proposed within Alternative D only (429,900 acres). The Gila River Cultural ACEC would be carried forward within Alternatives A and B (3,700 acres), and expanded within Alternatives C, D, and E (28,500 acres). Walter’s Camp Natural and Cultural ACEC is proposed within Alternative D only (3,500 acres). The following types of resource-use limitations would apply to these ACECs: (1) Allowable uses would be limited to those that are compatible with the natural or cultural resources for which the area is designated, (2) Recreation facilities would be limited to projects that protect ACEC values, and (3) Travel would be permitted only on designated open and signed routes. For detailed information on specific management for each proposed ACEC, see Chapter 2, E:\FR\FM\15DEN1.SGM 15DEN1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 71, Number 241 (Friday, December 15, 2006)]
[Notices]
[Pages 75576-75578]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: E6-21309]


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

DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR

Bureau of Land Management

[WY-100-06-1310-DB]


Notice of Availability of Draft Supplemental Environmental Impact 
Statement for the Pinedale Anticline Oil and Gas Exploration and 
Development Project, Sublette County, WY

AGENCY: Bureau of Land Management, Interior.

ACTION: Notice of availability.

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

SUMMARY: Under Section 102(2)(C) of the National Environmental Policy 
Act (NEPA) of 1969, as amended, the Bureau of Land Management (BLM), 
Pinedale Field Office announces the availability of a Draft 
Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement (SEIS) on a proposal for 
long-term development of natural gas resources in the Pinedale 
Anticline Project Area (PAPA). The BLM published the Notice of Intent 
(NOI) to prepare a SEIS for the Pinedale Anticline Project in the 
Federal Register on October 21, 2005.

DATES: The Draft SEIS will be available for public comment for 60 days 
starting on the date the Environmental Protection Agency publishes its 
Notice of Availability in the Federal Register. A separate CALGRID 
airborne ozone report will be published subsequent to the release of 
the Draft SEIS. The BLM can best utilize your comments on the 
supplemental information if they are received within the 60 day review 
period provided above. To provide the public with an opportunity to 
review the proposal and project information,

[[Page 75577]]

the BLM will host a meeting in Pinedale, Wyoming. The BLM will notify 
the public of the meeting date, time, and location at least 15 days 
prior to the event. Announcement of the public meeting will be made by 
news release to the media, individual letter mailings, and posting on 
the BLM website, listed below, if it is available.

ADDRESSES: Please send written comments or resource information to the 
Bureau of Land Management, Pinedale Field Office, Matt Anderson, 
Project Manager, 432 East Mill Street, P.O. Box 768, Pinedale, Wyoming 
82941. Electronic mail may be sent to: WYMail--PAPA--YRA@blm.gov. The 
SEIS will be posted at http://web.wy.blm.gov when available.
    Your response is important and will be considered in the 
environmental analysis process. If you do respond, we will keep you 
informed of decisions resulting from this analysis. Please note that 
public comments and information submitted regarding this project 
including names, e-mail addresses, and street addresses of the 
respondents will be available for public review and disclosure at the 
above address during regular business hours (7:45 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.), 
Monday through Friday, except holidays. Individual respondents may 
request confidentiality. If you wish to withhold your name, e-mail 
address, or street address from public review or from disclosure under 
the Freedom of Information Act, you must state this plainly at the 
beginning of your written comment. Such requests will be honored to the 
extent allowed by the law. All submissions from organizations or 
businesses, and from individuals identifying themselves as 
representatives or officials of organizations or businesses, will be 
made available for public inspection in their entirety.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Bureau of Land Management, Matt 
Anderson, Project Manager at (307) 367-5328, or by e-mail: matt_
anderson@blm.gov; or by the address above.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: The BLM conducted NEPA analysis and issued a 
Record of Decision (ROD) for the Pinedale Anticline Oil and Gas 
Exploration and Development Project in July 2000 in response to the 
increasing number of operators requesting approval to drill and develop 
oil and gas wells on the Pinedale Anticline. The NEPA document analyzed 
three alternatives with different levels of required mitigation, and 
for each alternative, there were three exploration and development 
scenarios based on the density and distribution of well pad 
development. The PAPA ROD established seasonal restrictions on natural 
gas development to minimize adverse effects on wintering big game and 
sage-grouse during breeding and nesting. The PAPA Final EIS did not 
include analysis of the potential impacts of oil and gas development 
activities (specifically drilling and completions) to big game on 
crucial winter ranges during the period of November 15 through April 
30. Exceptions to this winter closure period were to be based on 
current conditions such as the presence of wintering animals or depth 
of snow cover on a case-by-case basis.
    Starting in the winter of 2002-2003, the BLM authorized Questar 
Exploration and Production (Questar) to continue gas development 
operations at one well pad within big game crucial winter range. 
Questar was required to cooperate fully with the Wyoming Game and Fish 
Department in the study of the impact of its operations by supporting 
the ongoing Sublette Mule Deer Study. In November 2004, the BLM issued 
a Decision Record allowing Questar to expand their development 
activities in crucial mule deer winter range during winter while 
continuing to support the Sublette Mule Deer Study (Questar Year-Round 
Drilling Proposal Environmental Assessment, November 2004).
    Since then, other operators within the PAPA have expressed interest 
in conducting gas development activities including year-round drilling 
within big game crucial winter range. In the summer of 2005, Anschutz, 
Shell Exploration and Production Company (Shell), and Ultra Resources 
Inc. (Ultra) submitted a proposal to the BLM for a year-round drilling 
demonstration project on three well pads within their leaseholds during 
1 year. In September 2005, the BLM issued a Decision Record to allow 
them to proceed (ASU Year-Round Drilling Demonstration Project, 
September 2005). The Decision Record allowed each of the three 
operators to drill year-round on one well pad each on crucial winter 
range during the winter of 2005-2006. The result of that project led to 
the current proposal and to BLM's determination that a Supplemental EIS 
is necessary. The PAPA encompasses approximately 198,034 acres of 
primarily Federal lands (nearly 80 percent), and State and private 
land. Approximately 83 percent of the mineral estate underlying the 
PAPA is Federally-owned.
    Alternatives: The BLM has received a proposal for continued 
development of natural gas resources in the PAPA from Questar, Shell, 
and Ultra, representing themselves and others who agree to participate, 
collectively referred to as the Operators. There are currently 
approximately 460 producing wells in the PAPA; the Operators' proposal 
would exceed the drilling activity analyzed in the PAPA ROD (2000). The 
NEPA and air quality impact analyses supporting the PAPA ROD (2000) 
addressed 900 total wells and 700 producing well pads.
    The PAPA ROD stated that if the level of development exceeded that 
analyzed in the Draft EIS, that BLM would conduct additional 
environmental analysis. The BLM has identified the following resources 
that may be adversely impacted beyond the level analyzed in the PAPA 
ROD and the resources will be analyzed in the Draft SEIS: surface and 
ground water; air quality; wildlife and their habitats; vegetation; 
visual resources; transportation; noxious weeds; grazing; cultural and 
paleontological; wetland and riparian; threatened and endangered animal 
and plant species; and socioeconomics. In addition to the proposed 
action, the Draft SEIS analyzes the effects of the no-action 
alternative and the BLM preferred alternative, which are summarized 
below.
    Proposed Action: The Operators propose to conduct year-round 
drilling and completions in Concentrated Development Areas within a 
Core Development Area (coinciding with the Anticline Crest) of the 
PAPA. The Operators' proposed development includes construction of new 
well pads and substantial expansion of existing well pads to allow for 
multiple wells drilled from a pad. The Operators propose an additional 
4,399 wells on approximately 10-acre bottom hole spacing from an 
additional 250 well pads to more effectively recover the mineral 
resource. In addition, the BLM has determined that there is a need for 
new pipeline corridors between the PAPA and processing plants in 
southwestern Wyoming. Therefore, the SEIS includes specific analysis 
for two additional gas sales pipelines from the PAPA, one to the 
Granger and Blacks Fork gas plant and one from the PAPA to the Opal and 
Pioneer gas plant.
    Concurrent with the drilling and development activities, the 
Operators propose 3:1 compensatory mitigation to offset wildlife 
impacts and to study and evaluate the effects of oil and gas activities 
on big game using crucial winter ranges and sage-grouse using seasonal 
habitats during the winter months (November 15 through April 30).
    No Action Alternative: This alternative would continue

[[Page 75578]]

development within the PAPA as approved in the PAPA ROD and subsequent 
environmental documents and would not consider the Operators' proposal 
to: provide compensatory mitigation; minimize habitat fragmentation; 
and maximize resource recovery through multi-well pads and directional 
drilling.
    BLM Preferred Alternative: This alternative analyzes the same 
number of drilled wells, pad expansions, new well pads, proposed 
compensatory mitigation, and pipeline routes as the proposed action 
with limitations on where year-round drilling could occur at any one 
time within a core development area. The preferred alternative also 
reduces the size of the core development area from the proposed action.

    Dated: September 22, 2006.
Robert A. Bennett,
State Director.
[FR Doc. E6-21309 Filed 12-14-06; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 4310-22-P