Notice of Intent To Prepare a Draft Environmental Impact Statement for the City of Raleigh, Little River Reservoir Project in Wake County, NC, 53211-53213 [E8-21426]

Download as PDF Federal Register / Vol. 73, No. 179 / Monday, September 15, 2008 / Notices Dated: September 5, 2008. Patricia L. Toppings, OSD Federal Register Liaison Officer, Department of Defense. [FR Doc. E8–21422 Filed 9–12–08; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 5001–06–P DEPARTMENT OF DEFENSE Office of the Secretary [Docket ID: DoD–2008–OS–0091] Proposed Collection; Comment Request Office of the Under Secretary of Defense for Personnel and Readiness/ National Security Education Program, DoD. ACTION: Notice. AGENCY: In compliance with section 3506(c)(2)(A) of the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, the Office of the Under Secretary of Defense for Personnel and Readiness/National Security Education Program announces a proposed new public information collection and seeks public comment on the provisions thereof. Comments are invited on: (a) Whether the proposed collection of information is necessary for the proper performance of the functions of the agency, including whether the information shall have practical utility; (b) the accuracy of the agency’s estimate of the burden of the proposed information collection; (c) ways to enhance the quality, utility, and clarity of the information to be collected; and (d) ways to minimize the burden of the information collection on respondents, including through the use of automated collection techniques or other forms of information technology. DATES: Consideration will be given to all comments received by November 14, 2008. You may submit comments, identified by docket number and title, by any of the following methods: • Federal eRulemaking Portal: http:// www.regulations.gov. Follow the instructions for submitting comments. • Mail: Federal Docket Management System Office, 1160 Defense Pentagon, Washington, DC 20301–1160. Instructions: All submissions received must include the agency name, docket number and title for this Federal Register document. The general policy for comments and other submissions from members of the public is to make these submissions available for public viewing on the Internet at http:// www.regulations.gov as they are received without change, including any mstockstill on PROD1PC66 with NOTICES ADDRESSES: VerDate Aug<31>2005 20:22 Sep 12, 2008 Jkt 214001 personal identifiers or contact information. To request more information on this proposed information collection or to obtain a copy of the proposal and associated collection instruments, please write to the Office of the Under Secretary of Defense for Personnel and Readiness/National Security Education Program, ATTN: Mr. Robert Slater, PO Box 12221, Arlington, VA 22209–2221, or call at 703–696–5673. Title; Associated Form; and OMB Number: National Language Service Corps; DD Test Forms 2932, 2933, 2934 and 2935; OMB Number 0704–0449. Needs and Uses: The information collection requirement is necessary to identify individuals with language and special skills who potentially qualify for employment or service opportunities in the public section during periods of national need or emergency. Affected Public: Individuals or Households. Annual Burden Hours: 2,200. Number of Respondents: 4,000. Responses per Respondent: 1.75. Average Burden per Response: 18.86 minutes. Frequency: On occasion. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Summary of Information Collection The DD Test Form 2932, National Language Service Corps Application, is the initial document used to collect information from members of the public. The National Language Service Corps Application form contains a brief set of screening questions. Applicants fill this out for basic information (age, citizenship, Foreign Language), and if they meet eligibility criteria, they proceed to the supplemental documents. The supplemental documents are used to determine eligibility for membership in the National Language Service Corps. The DD Test Form 2934, National Language Service Corps (NLSC) Global Language SelfAssessment, provides an overall assessment of the applicant’s foreign language ability. The DD Test Form 2933, National Language Service Corps (NLSC) Detailed Skills Self-Assessment, is a detailed description of the applicant’s skills with respect to specific foreign language tasks. The DD Test Form 2935, National Language Service Corps (NLSC) Language Data Sheet, provides background data on where the applicant learned the foreign language and whether the applicant has used the language professionally. These three supplemental documents are used PO 00000 Frm 00024 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 53211 in conjunction for the certification of language skills for entry into the NLSC and quality assurance of certification. The information collected in the application and the supplemental documents is used solely by the National Language Service Corps. Dated: September 5, 2008. Patricia L. Toppings, OSD Federal Register Liaison Officer, Department of Defense. [FR Doc. E8–21423 Filed 9–12–08; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 5001–06–P DEPARTMENT OF DEFENSE Department of the Army; Corps of Engineers Notice of Intent To Prepare a Draft Environmental Impact Statement for the City of Raleigh, Little River Reservoir Project in Wake County, NC Department of the Army, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, DoD. ACTION: Notice of intent. AGENCY: SUMMARY: The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (COE), Wilmington District, Wilmington Regulatory Division has received a request for Department of the Army authorization, pursuant to Section 404 of the Clean Water Act, from the City of Raleigh to construct a drinking water reservoir on Little River to satisfy the future demands for the service area which includes Raleigh, Garner, Knightdale, Rolesville, Wake Forest, Wendell, and Zebulon, NC. The proposed project would require the construction of a dam north of U.S. Highway 64 on Little River, a tributary in the Neuse River Basin. In addition, infrastructure improvements including a water treatment plant, water lines, and raising and/or closing existing roadways are expected. DATES: A public scoping meeting for the Draft Environmental Impact Statement (DEIS) will be held at the East Wake High School at 5101 Rolesville Road, Wendell, NC 27591 on October 14, 2008 at 6:30 pm. ADDRESSES: Copies of comments and questions regarding scoping of the Draft EIS may be addressed to: U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Wilmington District, Regulatory Division—Raleigh Field Office, 3331 Heritage Trade Drive, Suite 105, Wake Forest, NC 27587, ATTN: File Number SAW–2004–9984752. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Questions about the proposed action and DEIS can be directed to Mr. Monte Matthews, Regulatory Division, telephone: (919) 554–4884, Extension 30. E:\FR\FM\15SEN1.SGM 15SEN1 53212 Federal Register / Vol. 73, No. 179 / Monday, September 15, 2008 / Notices The proposed Little River Reservoir site is located north of U.S. Highway 64, near Zebulon, Wake County, NC. The proposed reservoir would be comprised of approximately 1,100 acres of surface water at a normal pool elevation of 260 feet mean sea level. This would supply the service area with 17 million gallons per day (mgd) of drinking water. Impounded water would extend from the proposed dam site north to an area just south of State Route #2224, Mitchell Mill Road. The proposed project site includes undeveloped forested lands, existing farm fields, and beaver impacted streams and wetlands. This portion of Little River is classified as WS–II, High Quality Waters, Nutrient Sensitive Waters by the North Carolina Department of Environment and Natural Resources. The City of Raleigh has provided the following information about the purpose of the proposed project: The purpose of the proposed project is to develop a safe and dependable water supply for the project service area that, together with existing supplies, will satisfy estimated water demands for a planning period of approximately 30 years, and that will reinforce water system’s reliability during periods of drought and other water emergencies. Furthermore, an adequate water supply is necessary to support continued growth of the service area. The service area for the proposed project includes the City of Raleigh and the Towns of Garner, Knightdale, Rolesville, Wake Forest, Wendell, and Zebulon, NC. The water and wastewater utilities for these six towns have been merged with the utilities for the City of Raleigh. The City of Raleigh also provides water to other communities in Wake County (Holly Springs and Fuquay-Varina) under existing sales contracts. The population projections for the service area are expected to increase from 489,000 people in 2010 to 896,200 people in 2040. To continue, the water supply sources that currently provide drinking water for the project service area, including the communities served by sales contracts, encompass Falls Lake, Lake Benson/Lake Wheeler (scheduled to go on-line in 2010), and the Smith Creek Reservoir. The existing safe yield of the Smith Creek Reservoir is approximately 1 mgd, and the use of this source for water supply is currently planned to be discontinued. The existing 50-year safe yield of Falls Lake and Lake Benson/ Lake Wheeler is approximately 78.4 mgd. The projected water demand for the project service area for the Year 2040 is approximately 93 mgd. This mstockstill on PROD1PC66 with NOTICES SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: VerDate Aug<31>2005 20:22 Sep 12, 2008 Jkt 214001 projection includes allowances for sustainable reductions in water demand due to water conservation and reuse, which are important components of the City of Raleigh’s long-term water supply planning. On this basis, the proposed project, operated in conjunction with existing supplies as noted above, will meet the project service area demand through 2040. An additional water supply source will also increase the water system’s reliability during shortterm or catastrophic interruptions in the system due to line break or equipment breakdowns. Proposed Impacts to Wetlands and Surface Waters: Surface waters and wetlands have been delineated for the proposed project site. Field reviews of the delineations with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE), and North Carolina Division of Water Quality (DWQ) have been conducted with final USACE verification of the streams and wetlands delineation pending. The proposed reservoir will impact approximately 650 acres of wetlands and 55,500 linear feet of stream channel. Scope of Investigations: Based upon the proposed impacts to wetlands and streams, the City of Raleigh has indicated to the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers that they are willing to pursue an Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) for the proposed Project. The scope of the EIS investigation will include the following: Alternatives analyses, Affected environment, Environmental consequences, Secondary and cumulative environmental impacts, and Mitigation. Alternatives analyses: Council on Environmental Quality (CEQ) regulations (40 CFR 1502.14(a)) require an EIS to ‘‘rigorously explore and objectively evaluate all reasonable alternatives’’ for a proposed action. The regulations (40 CFR 1502.14(b)) further require that substantial treatment be made of each alternative considered in detail, including the proposed action. The Proposed Project and a reasonable number of alternatives, including the no action alternative, Use of Existing Reservoirs (Falls Lake, Lake Benson, Jordan Lake, and/or Kerr Lake), Alternative Reservoir Sites, Construction of Several Reservoirs, River or Stream Intake, Upland Constructed Flow Augmentation Reservoir, Purchasing Water from Other Systems, Development of Groundwater Supplies, Recycle and Reuse of Wastewater, Water Conservation, and any Combination of Alternatives will be evaluated and compared in the EIS. The factors used to compare the alternatives will be the same for each of the alternatives. PO 00000 Frm 00025 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 Affected environment: CEQ regulations (40 CFR 1502.15) require the EIS to describe the environment of the areas to be affected or created by the alternatives under consideration. The data and analysis shall be commensurate with the importance of the impact. Based upon preliminary evaluation of the proposed Project, it appears the primary areas of environmental concern will focus on the loss of wetlands and/or streams and other aquatic resource functions and values, mitigation of such losses, and the effect of the proposed reservoir on downstream water quality. In preparation for the EIS, the following studies have been completed or are ongoing for the proposed Project: • An in-house Environmental Assessment, Phase I Report completed by the applicant in January 1990. This report will be included as an appendix to the EIS. • An in-stream flow study composed of an interagency technical group to develop a technically defensible study, including alternatives, for releases of minimum flow. This report detailing the methodologies and results of the study will be included as an appendix to the EIS. • Jurisdictional wetland/stream/open waters delineations (Section 404 Jurisdictional Areas) (field reviews have been conducted with USACE and DWQ with final verification pending). A technical report detailing the methodologies and results of the jurisdictional areas delineation will be included as an appendix to the EIS. • Archaeological investigations and field survey. A technical report detailing the methodologies and results of the archaeological investigation and survey will be included as an appendix to the EIS. Environmental consequences: CEQ regulations (40 CFR 1502.16) state the EIS will include the environmental impacts of the alternatives including the proposed action, any adverse environmental effects which cannot be avoided should the proposal be implemented, the relationship between short-term uses of man’s environment and the maintenance and enhancement of long-term productivity, and any irreversible or irretrievable commitments of resources which would be involved in the proposal should it be implemented. The EIS will identify and disclose the direct impacts of the proposed project and study a reasonable number of alternatives on the following: Topography, geology, soils, climate, biotic communities, wetlands, fish and wildlife resources, endangered and threatened species, hydrology, water E:\FR\FM\15SEN1.SGM 15SEN1 mstockstill on PROD1PC66 with NOTICES Federal Register / Vol. 73, No. 179 / Monday, September 15, 2008 / Notices resources and water quality, floodplains, hazardous materials, air quality, noise, aesthetics, recreational resources, historical and cultural resources, socioeconomics, land use, public health and safety, energy requirements and conservation, natural or non-renewable resources, drinking waters, and environmental justice. Secondary and cumulative environmental impacts: Cumulative impacts result from the incremental impact of the proposed action when added to past, present, and reasonably foreseeable future actions, regardless of what agency or person undertakes the action. GIS data and mapping will be used to evaluate and quantify secondary and cumulative impacts of the proposed Project with particular emphasis given to wetlands and surface/groundwater resources. Mitigation: CEQ regulations (40 CFR 1502.14, 1502.16, and 1508.20) require the EIS to include appropriate mitigation measures. The USACE has adopted, through the CEQ, a mitigation policy which embraces the concepts of ‘‘no net loss of wetlands’’ and project sequencing. The purpose of this policy is to restore and maintain the chemical, biological, and physical integrity of ‘‘Waters of the United States,’’ specifically wetlands. Mitigation of wetland impacts has been defined by the CEQ to include: avoidance of impacts (to wetlands), minimizing impacts, rectifying impacts, reducing impacts over time, and compensating for impacts (40 CFR 1508.20). Each of these aspects (avoidance, minimization, and compensatory mitigation) must be considered in sequential order. As part of the EIS, the applicant will develop a compensatory mitigation plan detailing the methodology and approach to compensate for unavoidable impacts to waters of the U.S. including streams and wetlands. NEPA/SEPA Preparation and Permitting: Because the proposed Little River Reservoir project requires approvals from federal and state agencies under both the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) and the State Environmental Policy Act (SEPA), a joint Federal and State Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) will be prepared. The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers will serve as the lead agency for the process. The EIS will be the NEPA document for the Corps of Engineers (404 permit) and the SEPA document for the State of North Carolina (401 permit). Based on the size, complexity, and potential impacts of the proposed project, the Applicant has been advised by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to VerDate Aug<31>2005 20:22 Sep 12, 2008 Jkt 214001 identify and disclose the environmental impacts of the proposed project in an Environmental Impact Statement (EIS). Within the EIS, the Applicant will conduct a thorough environmental review, including an evaluation of a reasonable number of alternatives. After distribution and review of the Draft EIS and Final EIS, the Applicant understands that the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers will issue a Record of Decision (ROD) for the project. The ROD will document the completion of the EIS process and will serve as a basis for permitting decisions by Federal and State agencies. Jefferson M. Ryscavage, Colonel, U.S. Army, District Commander. [FR Doc. E8–21426 Filed 9–12–08; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3710–GN–P DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY Federal Energy Regulatory Commission Combined Notice of Filings September 10, 2008. Take notice that the Commission has received the following Natural Gas Pipeline Rate and Refund Report filings: Docket Numbers: RP00–157–020. Applicants: Kern River Gas Transmission Company. Description: Kern River Gas Transmission Co submits Original Sheet 495–A and 499–B to FERC Gas Tariff, Second Revised Volume 1. Filed Date: 08/28/2008. Accession Number: 20080903–0046. Comment Date: 5 p.m. Eastern Time on Friday, September 12, 2008. Docket Numbers: RP08–198–002. Applicants: Gulf South Pipeline Company, LP. Description: Gulf South Pipeline Company LP submits Fourth Revised Sheet 805A et al. to FERC Gas Tariff, Sixth Revised Volume 1, to be effective 8/17/08. Filed Date: 08/28/2008. Accession Number: 20080829–0093. Comment Date: 5 p.m. Eastern Time on Friday, September 12, 2008. Docket Numbers: RP08–613–000. Applicants: Alliance Pipeline L.P. Description: Alliance Pipeline, LP submits Fifth Revised Sheet 244 et al to FERC Gas Tariff, Original Volume 1, effective 10/1/08. Filed Date: 09/08/2008. Accession Number: 20080909–0095. Comment Date: 5 p.m. Eastern Time on Monday, September 22, 2008. Docket Numbers: RP08–614–000. Applicants: Columbia Gas Transmission Corporation. PO 00000 Frm 00026 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 53213 Description: Columbia Gas Transmission Corporation submits Thirty-Eighth Revised Sheet 30A et al to FERC Gas Tariff, Second Revised Volume 1, effective 10/8/08. Filed Date: 09/08/2008. Accession Number: 20080909–0094. Comment Date: 5 p.m. Eastern Time on Monday, September 22, 2008. Docket Numbers: RP08–615–000. Applicants: Trunkline Gas Company, LLC. Description: Trunkline Gas Company, LLC submits its Annual Report of Flow Through of Cash Out and Penalty Revenues for the period of May 2006 through April 2007. Filed Date: 09/08/2008. Accession Number: 20080909–0093. Comment Date: 5 p.m. Eastern Time on Monday, September 22, 2008. Docket Numbers: RP08–616–000. Applicants: Trunkline Gas Company, LLC. Description: Trunkline Gas Company, LLC submits its Annual Report of Flow Through of Cash Out and Penalty Revenues for the period of May 2007 through April 2008. Filed Date: 09/08/2008. Accession Number: 20080909–0092. Comment Date: 5 p.m. Eastern Time on Monday, September 22, 2008. Any person desiring to intervene or to protest in any of the above proceedings must file in accordance with Rules 211 and 214 of the Commission’s Rules of Practice and Procedure (18 CFR 385.211 and 385.214) on or before 5 p.m. Eastern time on the specified comment date. It is not necessary to separately intervene again in a subdocket related to a compliance filing if you have previously intervened in the same docket. Protests will be considered by the Commission in determining the appropriate action to be taken, but will not serve to make protestants parties to the proceeding. Anyone filing a motion to intervene or protest must serve a copy of that document on the Applicant. In reference to filings initiating a new proceeding, interventions or protests submitted on or before the comment deadline need not be served on persons other than the Applicant. The Commission encourages electronic submission of protests and interventions in lieu of paper, using the FERC Online links at http:// www.ferc.gov. To facilitate electronic service, persons with Internet access who will eFile a document and/or be listed as a contact for an intervenor must create and validate an eRegistration account using the eRegistration link. Select the eFiling link to log on and submit the intervention or protests. E:\FR\FM\15SEN1.SGM 15SEN1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 73, Number 179 (Monday, September 15, 2008)]
[Notices]
[Pages 53211-53213]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: E8-21426]


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DEPARTMENT OF DEFENSE

Department of the Army; Corps of Engineers


Notice of Intent To Prepare a Draft Environmental Impact 
Statement for the City of Raleigh, Little River Reservoir Project in 
Wake County, NC

AGENCY: Department of the Army, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, DoD.

ACTION: Notice of intent.

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

SUMMARY: The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (COE), Wilmington District, 
Wilmington Regulatory Division has received a request for Department of 
the Army authorization, pursuant to Section 404 of the Clean Water Act, 
from the City of Raleigh to construct a drinking water reservoir on 
Little River to satisfy the future demands for the service area which 
includes Raleigh, Garner, Knightdale, Rolesville, Wake Forest, Wendell, 
and Zebulon, NC.
    The proposed project would require the construction of a dam north 
of U.S. Highway 64 on Little River, a tributary in the Neuse River 
Basin. In addition, infrastructure improvements including a water 
treatment plant, water lines, and raising and/or closing existing 
roadways are expected.

DATES: A public scoping meeting for the Draft Environmental Impact 
Statement (DEIS) will be held at the East Wake High School at 5101 
Rolesville Road, Wendell, NC 27591 on October 14, 2008 at 6:30 pm.

ADDRESSES: Copies of comments and questions regarding scoping of the 
Draft EIS may be addressed to: U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Wilmington 
District, Regulatory Division--Raleigh Field Office, 3331 Heritage 
Trade Drive, Suite 105, Wake Forest, NC 27587, ATTN: File Number SAW-
2004-9984752.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Questions about the proposed action 
and DEIS can be directed to Mr. Monte Matthews, Regulatory Division, 
telephone: (919) 554-4884, Extension 30.

[[Page 53212]]


SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: The proposed Little River Reservoir site is 
located north of U.S. Highway 64, near Zebulon, Wake County, NC. The 
proposed reservoir would be comprised of approximately 1,100 acres of 
surface water at a normal pool elevation of 260 feet mean sea level. 
This would supply the service area with 17 million gallons per day 
(mgd) of drinking water. Impounded water would extend from the proposed 
dam site north to an area just south of State Route 2224, 
Mitchell Mill Road. The proposed project site includes undeveloped 
forested lands, existing farm fields, and beaver impacted streams and 
wetlands. This portion of Little River is classified as WS-II, High 
Quality Waters, Nutrient Sensitive Waters by the North Carolina 
Department of Environment and Natural Resources.
    The City of Raleigh has provided the following information about 
the purpose of the proposed project:
    The purpose of the proposed project is to develop a safe and 
dependable water supply for the project service area that, together 
with existing supplies, will satisfy estimated water demands for a 
planning period of approximately 30 years, and that will reinforce 
water system's reliability during periods of drought and other water 
emergencies. Furthermore, an adequate water supply is necessary to 
support continued growth of the service area. The service area for the 
proposed project includes the City of Raleigh and the Towns of Garner, 
Knightdale, Rolesville, Wake Forest, Wendell, and Zebulon, NC. The 
water and wastewater utilities for these six towns have been merged 
with the utilities for the City of Raleigh. The City of Raleigh also 
provides water to other communities in Wake County (Holly Springs and 
Fuquay-Varina) under existing sales contracts. The population 
projections for the service area are expected to increase from 489,000 
people in 2010 to 896,200 people in 2040.
    To continue, the water supply sources that currently provide 
drinking water for the project service area, including the communities 
served by sales contracts, encompass Falls Lake, Lake Benson/Lake 
Wheeler (scheduled to go on-line in 2010), and the Smith Creek 
Reservoir. The existing safe yield of the Smith Creek Reservoir is 
approximately 1 mgd, and the use of this source for water supply is 
currently planned to be discontinued. The existing 50-year safe yield 
of Falls Lake and Lake Benson/Lake Wheeler is approximately 78.4 mgd. 
The projected water demand for the project service area for the Year 
2040 is approximately 93 mgd. This projection includes allowances for 
sustainable reductions in water demand due to water conservation and 
reuse, which are important components of the City of Raleigh's long-
term water supply planning. On this basis, the proposed project, 
operated in conjunction with existing supplies as noted above, will 
meet the project service area demand through 2040. An additional water 
supply source will also increase the water system's reliability during 
short-term or catastrophic interruptions in the system due to line 
break or equipment breakdowns.
    Proposed Impacts to Wetlands and Surface Waters: Surface waters and 
wetlands have been delineated for the proposed project site. Field 
reviews of the delineations with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers 
(USACE), and North Carolina Division of Water Quality (DWQ) have been 
conducted with final USACE verification of the streams and wetlands 
delineation pending. The proposed reservoir will impact approximately 
650 acres of wetlands and 55,500 linear feet of stream channel.
    Scope of Investigations: Based upon the proposed impacts to 
wetlands and streams, the City of Raleigh has indicated to the U.S. 
Army Corps of Engineers that they are willing to pursue an 
Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) for the proposed Project. The 
scope of the EIS investigation will include the following: Alternatives 
analyses, Affected environment, Environmental consequences, Secondary 
and cumulative environmental impacts, and Mitigation.
    Alternatives analyses: Council on Environmental Quality (CEQ) 
regulations (40 CFR 1502.14(a)) require an EIS to ``rigorously explore 
and objectively evaluate all reasonable alternatives'' for a proposed 
action. The regulations (40 CFR 1502.14(b)) further require that 
substantial treatment be made of each alternative considered in detail, 
including the proposed action. The Proposed Project and a reasonable 
number of alternatives, including the no action alternative, Use of 
Existing Reservoirs (Falls Lake, Lake Benson, Jordan Lake, and/or Kerr 
Lake), Alternative Reservoir Sites, Construction of Several Reservoirs, 
River or Stream Intake, Upland Constructed Flow Augmentation Reservoir, 
Purchasing Water from Other Systems, Development of Groundwater 
Supplies, Recycle and Reuse of Wastewater, Water Conservation, and any 
Combination of Alternatives will be evaluated and compared in the EIS. 
The factors used to compare the alternatives will be the same for each 
of the alternatives.
    Affected environment: CEQ regulations (40 CFR 1502.15) require the 
EIS to describe the environment of the areas to be affected or created 
by the alternatives under consideration. The data and analysis shall be 
commensurate with the importance of the impact. Based upon preliminary 
evaluation of the proposed Project, it appears the primary areas of 
environmental concern will focus on the loss of wetlands and/or streams 
and other aquatic resource functions and values, mitigation of such 
losses, and the effect of the proposed reservoir on downstream water 
quality.
    In preparation for the EIS, the following studies have been 
completed or are ongoing for the proposed Project:
     An in-house Environmental Assessment, Phase I Report 
completed by the applicant in January 1990. This report will be 
included as an appendix to the EIS.
     An in-stream flow study composed of an interagency 
technical group to develop a technically defensible study, including 
alternatives, for releases of minimum flow. This report detailing the 
methodologies and results of the study will be included as an appendix 
to the EIS.
     Jurisdictional wetland/stream/open waters delineations 
(Section 404 Jurisdictional Areas) (field reviews have been conducted 
with USACE and DWQ with final verification pending). A technical report 
detailing the methodologies and results of the jurisdictional areas 
delineation will be included as an appendix to the EIS.
     Archaeological investigations and field survey. A 
technical report detailing the methodologies and results of the 
archaeological investigation and survey will be included as an appendix 
to the EIS.
    Environmental consequences: CEQ regulations (40 CFR 1502.16) state 
the EIS will include the environmental impacts of the alternatives 
including the proposed action, any adverse environmental effects which 
cannot be avoided should the proposal be implemented, the relationship 
between short-term uses of man's environment and the maintenance and 
enhancement of long-term productivity, and any irreversible or 
irretrievable commitments of resources which would be involved in the 
proposal should it be implemented. The EIS will identify and disclose 
the direct impacts of the proposed project and study a reasonable 
number of alternatives on the following: Topography, geology, soils, 
climate, biotic communities, wetlands, fish and wildlife resources, 
endangered and threatened species, hydrology, water

[[Page 53213]]

resources and water quality, floodplains, hazardous materials, air 
quality, noise, aesthetics, recreational resources, historical and 
cultural resources, socioeconomics, land use, public health and safety, 
energy requirements and conservation, natural or non-renewable 
resources, drinking waters, and environmental justice.
    Secondary and cumulative environmental impacts: Cumulative impacts 
result from the incremental impact of the proposed action when added to 
past, present, and reasonably foreseeable future actions, regardless of 
what agency or person undertakes the action. GIS data and mapping will 
be used to evaluate and quantify secondary and cumulative impacts of 
the proposed Project with particular emphasis given to wetlands and 
surface/groundwater resources.
    Mitigation: CEQ regulations (40 CFR 1502.14, 1502.16, and 1508.20) 
require the EIS to include appropriate mitigation measures. The USACE 
has adopted, through the CEQ, a mitigation policy which embraces the 
concepts of ``no net loss of wetlands'' and project sequencing. The 
purpose of this policy is to restore and maintain the chemical, 
biological, and physical integrity of ``Waters of the United States,'' 
specifically wetlands. Mitigation of wetland impacts has been defined 
by the CEQ to include: avoidance of impacts (to wetlands), minimizing 
impacts, rectifying impacts, reducing impacts over time, and 
compensating for impacts (40 CFR 1508.20). Each of these aspects 
(avoidance, minimization, and compensatory mitigation) must be 
considered in sequential order. As part of the EIS, the applicant will 
develop a compensatory mitigation plan detailing the methodology and 
approach to compensate for unavoidable impacts to waters of the U.S. 
including streams and wetlands.
    NEPA/SEPA Preparation and Permitting: Because the proposed Little 
River Reservoir project requires approvals from federal and state 
agencies under both the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) and 
the State Environmental Policy Act (SEPA), a joint Federal and State 
Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) will be prepared. The U.S. Army 
Corps of Engineers will serve as the lead agency for the process. The 
EIS will be the NEPA document for the Corps of Engineers (404 permit) 
and the SEPA document for the State of North Carolina (401 permit).
    Based on the size, complexity, and potential impacts of the 
proposed project, the Applicant has been advised by the U.S. Army Corps 
of Engineers to identify and disclose the environmental impacts of the 
proposed project in an Environmental Impact Statement (EIS). Within the 
EIS, the Applicant will conduct a thorough environmental review, 
including an evaluation of a reasonable number of alternatives. After 
distribution and review of the Draft EIS and Final EIS, the Applicant 
understands that the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers will issue a Record 
of Decision (ROD) for the project. The ROD will document the completion 
of the EIS process and will serve as a basis for permitting decisions 
by Federal and State agencies.

Jefferson M. Ryscavage,
Colonel, U.S. Army, District Commander.
[FR Doc. E8-21426 Filed 9-12-08; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 3710-GN-P