Winter Use Plan, Environmental Impact Statement, Yellowstone National Park, 4842-4843 [2010-1914]

Download as PDF 4842 Federal Register / Vol. 75, No. 19 / Friday, January 29, 2010 / Notices Dated: December 21, 2009. Lynn M. Lewis, Assistant Regional Director, Ecological Services, Region 3, Fort Snelling, MN. [FR Doc. 2010–1810 Filed 1–28–10; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4310–55–P DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR Bureau of Land Management [LLAZC02000L16100000.DR0000.241A] Notice of Availability of Record of Decision for the Yuma Field Office Resource Management Plan/ Environmental Impact Statement jlentini on DSKJ8SOYB1PROD with NOTICES AGENCY: Bureau of Land Management, Interior. ACTION: Notice of availability. SUMMARY: The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) announces the availability of the Record of Decision (ROD)/Approved Resource Management Plan (RMP) for the Yuma Field Office (YFO) located in Arizona and California. The Arizona State Director signed the ROD on July 28, 2009, which constitutes the final decision of the BLM and makes the approved RMP effective immediately. ADDRESSES: Copies of the ROD/ Approved RMP are available upon request from the Bureau of Land Management, Yuma Field Office, 2555 Gila Ridge Road, Yuma, Arizona 85365, or via the Internet at http:// www.blm.gov/az/st/en/prog/planning/ yuma_plan.html. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: James T. Shoaff, Field Manager, Bureau of Land Management, Yuma Field Office, 2555 Gila Ridge Road, Yuma, Arizona 85365. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: One of BLM’s objectives during the planning process was to understand the views of various public interest groups by providing opportunities for meaningful participation. Through communication media such as meetings, newsletters, and news releases, the public was provided opportunities to identify issues that needed to be addressed. The public also provided comments during the 90-day public comment period on the Draft Environmental Impact Statement (EIS), which were addressed in the Final EIS. The Approved RMP/ Final EIS was developed with the following cooperating agencies: the Bureau of Reclamation; the Arizona Game and Fish Department; the Arizona Department of Transportation; the Federal Highway Administration; the Imperial, Cibola, and Kofa National VerDate Nov<24>2008 16:49 Jan 28, 2010 Jkt 220001 Wildlife Refuges; the Fort Yuma Quechan Tribe; the Marine Corps Air Station, Yuma; Natural Resource Conservation Service; the Yuma County Department of Public Works; the city of Yuma; the U.S. Army Yuma Proving Ground; the U.S. Department of Agriculture, the Natural Resources Conservation Service; the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, Customs and Border Patrol; the Cocopah Indian Tribe; the town of Quartzsite; the Wellton-Mohawk Irrigation District; and the Yavapai-Apache Nation. The BLM also initiated consultation with tribes that have oral traditions or cultural concerns relating to the planning area or that are documented as having occupied or used portions of the planning area during prehistoric or historic times. The Approved RMP includes strategies for protecting and preserving the biological, cultural, recreational, geological, educational, scientific, and scenic values that balance multiple uses of the BLM-administered lands throughout the YFO planning area. The planning area encompasses more than 1.2 million acres of BLM-administered lands. The ROD and Approved RMP include one new Area of Critical Environmental Concern (ACEC): Dripping Springs Natural and Cultural ACEC (11,733 acres). One existing ACEC is expanded under the new plan: Gila River Cultural ACEC (from 3,668 to 28,504 acres). The Gila River Cultural ACEC is renamed the Sears Point Cultural ACEC. The following types of resource use limitations generally apply to these ACECs: (1) Allowable uses are limited to those which are compatible with the natural or cultural resources for which the area is designated; (2) Recreation facilities are limited to projects that protect ACEC values; and (3) Travel is permitted only on designated open and signed routes. Detailed information is provided in the Special Designations Management section of the Approved RMP. The Preferred Alternative in the Draft Resource Management Plan/Draft EIS (published December 15, 2006) was revised to include comments received during the 90-day public comment period. The resulting alternative became the Proposed Plan in the Proposed Resource Management Plan/Final EIS (PRMP/FEIS), published on April 11, 2008. Seven protests were received during the Final EIS 30-day protest period. The Proposed Plan was clarified based on these protests. The Proposed Plan is now called the ‘‘Approved RMP’’ and is attached to the ROD. As a result of protests, only minor editorial modifications were made in preparing PO 00000 Frm 00074 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 the Approved RMP. These modifications provided further clarification of some of the decisions. Minor clarifications and changes between the Proposed Plan/Final EIS and the ROD/Approved Plan include the recalculation of Geographic Information System acreage to ensure consistency between lands available for grazing and those unavailable for grazing in the YFO, and minor text changes to clarify certain decisions. The BLM has determined that the Approved RMP provides an optimal balance between authorized resource use and the protection and long-term sustainability of sensitive resources within the planning area. Neither the Arizona Governor’s Office nor the California Governor’s Office identified any inconsistencies between the Proposed RMP/Final EIS and state or local plans, policies, and programs following the 60-day Governors’ Consistency Reviews (initiated March 6, 2008), in accordance with planning regulations at 43 CFR part 1610.3–2(e). The Approved RMP does not contain implementation decisions. Future activity-level plans will address the implementation of the approved RMP. These implementation plans will provide the required additional sitespecific planning and National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) analyses. At that time, such decisions will become appealable. The appeal process will be outlined in the future individual implementation (activity or project-level) plans. Authority: H–1790–1 National Environmental Policy Act Handbook, January 30, 2008. James G. Kenna, Arizona State Director. [FR Doc. 2010–1726 Filed 1–28–10; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4310–32–P DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR National Park Service Winter Use Plan, Environmental Impact Statement, Yellowstone National Park AGENCY: National Park Service, Department of the Interior. ACTION: Notice of Intent to prepare an Environmental Impact Statement for a Winter Use Plan, Yellowstone National Park. SUMMARY: Pursuant to the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969, 42 U.S.C. 4332(2)(C), the National Park Service (NPS) is preparing an Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) for a Winter Use Plan for Yellowstone E:\FR\FM\29JAN1.SGM 29JAN1 jlentini on DSKJ8SOYB1PROD with NOTICES Federal Register / Vol. 75, No. 19 / Friday, January 29, 2010 / Notices National Park, located in Idaho, Montana and Wyoming. The purpose of the EIS is to establish a management framework that allows the public to experience Yellowstone’s unique winter resources and values. This plan will determine whether motorized winter use of the park (including wheeled motor vehicles, snowmobiles, and snowcoaches) is appropriate, and if so, the types, extent, and location of this use. A Winter Use Plan is needed at this time because: (1) Yellowstone offers unique winter experiences that are distinct from other times of the year; (2) the National Park Service provides opportunities for people to experience the park in the winter, but access to most of the park in the winter is limited by distance and the harsh winter environment, which present challenges to safety and park operations; and (3) the legal authority for oversnow vehicle use (snowmobiles and snowcoaches) at Yellowstone expires after the winter of 2010–2011. A decision is needed about whether this use should continue, and if so, how to structure use to protect resources and values and to provide for visitor use and enjoyment. Alternatives considered in the EIS process will focus on responding to the purpose and need, and will also address the objectives of the EIS. The EIS will consider a variety of alternatives for managing winter use in the park, including the use of snowmobiles, snowcoaches, and wheeled vehicles, as well as requirement for professional guides to lead oversnow vehicles into and out of the park. The EIS will evaluate the environmental effects of winter use on air quality and visibility, wildlife, natural soundscapes, employee and visitor health and safety, visitor experience, and socioeconomics. The NPS will be inviting several other government agencies to participate in the development of the EIS as cooperating agencies, including the states of Wyoming, Montana, and Idaho; the counties of Park and Teton, WY; Gallatin and Park, MT; and Fremont, ID; the Environmental Protection Agency; the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service; and the U.S. Forest Service. A scoping brochure has been prepared that details the issues identified to date, and includes the purpose, need and objectives of the EIS. Copies of the brochure may be obtained online at http://parkplanning.nps.gov/YELL (click on the link to the Winter Use Plan) or from Yellowstone National Park, P.O. Box 168, Yellowstone National Park, WY 82190, 307–344–2019. The NPS is interested in obtaining comments from the public on the scope VerDate Nov<24>2008 16:49 Jan 28, 2010 Jkt 220001 of the EIS; the purpose, need, and objectives; the issues that the EIS should address; and the alternatives that should be considered in the EIS. Comments submitted during this scoping period will allow the NPS to address public concerns as the EIS is prepared. Background: The NPS is preparing this EIS to develop a long-term plan to allow the public to experience Yellowstone’s unique winter resources and values. Currently, the vast majority of access to the park in winter is automobile access in the northern portion of the park and snowmobile and snowcoach access through the park’s North, South, and East entrances. Snowmobile and snowcoach access in the park are currently authorized by an interim regulation, which allows their use for the winters of 2009–2010 and 2010–2011. The regulation mandates that the authorization of snowmobile and snowcoach use ends following the winter of 2010–2011, so their use will cease unless a new regulation is promulgated. Among other issues, the EIS will consider whether continued use of snowmobiles and snowcoaches is appropriate. If a determination is made that continued use of snowmobiles and/ or snowcoaches is appropriate, this EIS is intended to satisfy the National Environmental Policy Act requirements for any new regulation. Because the interim regulation’s authorization of oversnow vehicle use is only in effect through the winter of 2010–2011, the NPS intends to complete this EIS and issue a new regulation, if necessary, based upon the outcome of the EIS process, prior to the start of the 2011–2012 winter season. More information regarding Yellowstone in the winter, including educational materials and a detailed history of winter use in Yellowstone, is available at http://www.nps.gov/yell/ planvisit/winteruse/index.htm. DATES: The National Park Service will accept comments from the public for 60 days from the date that this Notice is published in the Federal Register. The National Park Service intends to hold public scoping meetings in Idaho Falls, ID, and Billings, MT, the week of February 15, 2010; and in Cheyenne, WY, and Washington, DC, the week of March 15, 2010. Details regarding the exact times and locations of these meetings will be announced on the park’s Web site, at http:// parkplanning.nps.gov/YELL (click on the link to the Winter Use Plan), and through local media. ADDRESSES: Information specific to the EIS process will be available for public review and comment online at http:// PO 00000 Frm 00075 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 4843 parkplanning.nps.gov/YELL (click on the link to the Winter Use Plan), and at Yellowstone National Park headquarters, Mammoth Hot Springs, WY. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: John Sacklin, P.O. Box 168, Yellowstone National Park, WY 82190, (307) 344– 2019, yell_winter_use@nps.gov. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: If you wish to comment on the scoping brochure or on any other issues associated with the plan, you may submit your comments by any one of several methods. We encourage you to comment via the Internet at http:// parkplanning.nps.gov/YELL (click on the link to the Winter Use Plan). You may also comment by mail to: Yellowstone National Park, Winter Use Scoping, P.O. Box 168, Yellowstone NP, WY 82190. Finally, you may hand deliver your comments to: Management Assistant’s Office, Headquarters Building, Mammoth Hot Springs, Yellowstone National Park, WY. Comments will not be accepted by fax, e-mail, or in any other way than those specified above. Before including your address, phone number, e-mail address, or other personal identifying information in your comment, you should be aware that your entire comment—including your personal identifying information—may be made publicly available at any time. While you can ask us in your comment to withhold your personal identifying information from public review, we cannot guarantee that we will be able to do so. Dated: January 8, 2010. Michael D. Snyder, Director, Intermountain Region, National Park Service. [FR Doc. 2010–1914 Filed 1–28–10; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE P DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR Bureau of Land Management [LLAK920000–L14100000–BJ0000] Notice of Filing of Plats of Survey; Alaska AGENCY: Bureau of Land Management, Interior. ACTION: Notice of Filing of Plats of Survey. SUMMARY: Notice of Filing of Plats of Survey; Alaska. DATES: The plat(s) of survey described below is scheduled to be officially filed in the Alaska State Office, Bureau of Land Management, Anchorage, Alaska, E:\FR\FM\29JAN1.SGM 29JAN1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 75, Number 19 (Friday, January 29, 2010)]
[Notices]
[Pages 4842-4843]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2010-1914]


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DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR

National Park Service


Winter Use Plan, Environmental Impact Statement, Yellowstone 
National Park

AGENCY: National Park Service, Department of the Interior.

ACTION: Notice of Intent to prepare an Environmental Impact Statement 
for a Winter Use Plan, Yellowstone National Park.

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

SUMMARY: Pursuant to the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969, 42 
U.S.C. 4332(2)(C), the National Park Service (NPS) is preparing an 
Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) for a Winter Use Plan for 
Yellowstone

[[Page 4843]]

National Park, located in Idaho, Montana and Wyoming.
    The purpose of the EIS is to establish a management framework that 
allows the public to experience Yellowstone's unique winter resources 
and values. This plan will determine whether motorized winter use of 
the park (including wheeled motor vehicles, snowmobiles, and 
snowcoaches) is appropriate, and if so, the types, extent, and location 
of this use.
    A Winter Use Plan is needed at this time because: (1) Yellowstone 
offers unique winter experiences that are distinct from other times of 
the year; (2) the National Park Service provides opportunities for 
people to experience the park in the winter, but access to most of the 
park in the winter is limited by distance and the harsh winter 
environment, which present challenges to safety and park operations; 
and (3) the legal authority for oversnow vehicle use (snowmobiles and 
snowcoaches) at Yellowstone expires after the winter of 2010-2011. A 
decision is needed about whether this use should continue, and if so, 
how to structure use to protect resources and values and to provide for 
visitor use and enjoyment.
    Alternatives considered in the EIS process will focus on responding 
to the purpose and need, and will also address the objectives of the 
EIS. The EIS will consider a variety of alternatives for managing 
winter use in the park, including the use of snowmobiles, snowcoaches, 
and wheeled vehicles, as well as requirement for professional guides to 
lead oversnow vehicles into and out of the park. The EIS will evaluate 
the environmental effects of winter use on air quality and visibility, 
wildlife, natural soundscapes, employee and visitor health and safety, 
visitor experience, and socioeconomics.
    The NPS will be inviting several other government agencies to 
participate in the development of the EIS as cooperating agencies, 
including the states of Wyoming, Montana, and Idaho; the counties of 
Park and Teton, WY; Gallatin and Park, MT; and Fremont, ID; the 
Environmental Protection Agency; the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service; 
and the U.S. Forest Service.
    A scoping brochure has been prepared that details the issues 
identified to date, and includes the purpose, need and objectives of 
the EIS. Copies of the brochure may be obtained online at http://parkplanning.nps.gov/YELL (click on the link to the Winter Use Plan) or 
from Yellowstone National Park, P.O. Box 168, Yellowstone National 
Park, WY 82190, 307-344-2019.
    The NPS is interested in obtaining comments from the public on the 
scope of the EIS; the purpose, need, and objectives; the issues that 
the EIS should address; and the alternatives that should be considered 
in the EIS. Comments submitted during this scoping period will allow 
the NPS to address public concerns as the EIS is prepared.
    Background: The NPS is preparing this EIS to develop a long-term 
plan to allow the public to experience Yellowstone's unique winter 
resources and values. Currently, the vast majority of access to the 
park in winter is automobile access in the northern portion of the park 
and snowmobile and snowcoach access through the park's North, South, 
and East entrances. Snowmobile and snowcoach access in the park are 
currently authorized by an interim regulation, which allows their use 
for the winters of 2009-2010 and 2010-2011. The regulation mandates 
that the authorization of snowmobile and snowcoach use ends following 
the winter of 2010-2011, so their use will cease unless a new 
regulation is promulgated. Among other issues, the EIS will consider 
whether continued use of snowmobiles and snowcoaches is appropriate. If 
a determination is made that continued use of snowmobiles and/or 
snowcoaches is appropriate, this EIS is intended to satisfy the 
National Environmental Policy Act requirements for any new regulation.
    Because the interim regulation's authorization of oversnow vehicle 
use is only in effect through the winter of 2010-2011, the NPS intends 
to complete this EIS and issue a new regulation, if necessary, based 
upon the outcome of the EIS process, prior to the start of the 2011-
2012 winter season.
    More information regarding Yellowstone in the winter, including 
educational materials and a detailed history of winter use in 
Yellowstone, is available at http://www.nps.gov/yell/planvisit/winteruse/index.htm.

DATES: The National Park Service will accept comments from the public 
for 60 days from the date that this Notice is published in the Federal 
Register. The National Park Service intends to hold public scoping 
meetings in Idaho Falls, ID, and Billings, MT, the week of February 15, 
2010; and in Cheyenne, WY, and Washington, DC, the week of March 15, 
2010. Details regarding the exact times and locations of these meetings 
will be announced on the park's Web site, at http://parkplanning.nps.gov/YELL (click on the link to the Winter Use Plan), 
and through local media.

ADDRESSES: Information specific to the EIS process will be available 
for public review and comment online at http://parkplanning.nps.gov/YELL (click on the link to the Winter Use Plan), and at Yellowstone 
National Park headquarters, Mammoth Hot Springs, WY.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: John Sacklin, P.O. Box 168, 
Yellowstone National Park, WY 82190, (307) 344-2019, yell_winter_use@nps.gov.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: If you wish to comment on the scoping 
brochure or on any other issues associated with the plan, you may 
submit your comments by any one of several methods. We encourage you to 
comment via the Internet at http://parkplanning.nps.gov/YELL (click on 
the link to the Winter Use Plan). You may also comment by mail to: 
Yellowstone National Park, Winter Use Scoping, P.O. Box 168, 
Yellowstone NP, WY 82190. Finally, you may hand deliver your comments 
to: Management Assistant's Office, Headquarters Building, Mammoth Hot 
Springs, Yellowstone National Park, WY. Comments will not be accepted 
by fax, e-mail, or in any other way than those specified above.
    Before including your address, phone number, e-mail address, or 
other personal identifying information in your comment, you should be 
aware that your entire comment--including your personal identifying 
information--may be made publicly available at any time. While you can 
ask us in your comment to withhold your personal identifying 
information from public review, we cannot guarantee that we will be 
able to do so.

    Dated: January 8, 2010.
Michael D. Snyder,
Director, Intermountain Region, National Park Service.
[FR Doc. 2010-1914 Filed 1-28-10; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE P