Notice of Availability of the Draft Environmental Impact Statement and Resource Management Plan Amendment for the Proposed Modification to the Thompson Creek Mine Plan of Operations, Section 404 Clean Water Act Permit Application, and Public Land Disposal, Custer and Bannock Counties, Idaho, 15771-15772 [2014-06113]

Download as PDF Federal Register / Vol. 79, No. 55 / Friday, March 21, 2014 / Notices land use authorizations of a temporary nature which will not significantly impact the values to be protected by the withdrawal may be allowed with the approval of the authorized officer of the USDA FS during the temporary segregative period. This application will be processed in accordance with the regulations set forth in 43 CFR 2310.3. Donald A. Simpson, Wyoming State Director. [FR Doc. 2014–06184 Filed 3–20–14; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4310–11–P DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR Bureau of Land Management [LLIDI03000.L71220000.EX0000.XXXX. LVTFD0977180; IDI–33145, IDI–35728] Notice of Availability of the Draft Environmental Impact Statement and Resource Management Plan Amendment for the Proposed Modification to the Thompson Creek Mine Plan of Operations, Section 404 Clean Water Act Permit Application, and Public Land Disposal, Custer and Bannock Counties, Idaho Bureau of Land Management, Interior. ACTION: Notice of Availability. AGENCY: In compliance with the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969, as amended (NEPA), and the Federal Land Policy and Management Act of 1976, as amended (FLPMA), the Bureau of Land Management (BLM), Challis Field Office, Idaho, has prepared a draft environmental impact statement (EIS) and draft resource management plan (RMP) amendment for a proposed modified mining plan of operations (MMPO) for the Thompson Creek molybdenum mine and a related Section 404 Clean Water Act (CWA) permit application and land exchange proposal. The BLM announces the availability of the draft EIS/RMP amendment and the start of the comment period for the draft EIS/RMP amendment. DATES: To ensure comments will be considered, the BLM must receive written comments on the draft EIS/RMP amendment within 90 days following the date the Environmental Protection Agency publishes a Notice of Availability in the Federal Register. The BLM will announce future public meetings and any other public involvement activities at least 15 days in advance through public notices, media releases, and/or mailings. mstockstill on DSK4VPTVN1PROD with NOTICES SUMMARY: VerDate Mar<15>2010 17:18 Mar 20, 2014 Jkt 232001 You may submit comments or request your name be added to the mailing list for the project by any of these methods: D Email: BLM_ID_TCM_EIS@blm.gov; D Fax: 208–879–6219 (please reference ‘‘TCM EIS’’); or D Mail: TCM EIS, Bureau of Land Management, Challis Field Office, 1151 Blue Mountain Road, Challis, ID 83226. Copies of the draft EIS/RMP amendment are available in the BLM Challis Field Office at the address listed above from 7:45 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays. Copies of the draft EIS/RMP amendment are also available at http:// www.blm.gov/id/st/en/prog/nepa_ register/TCM-exlx_EIS.html. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Ken Gardner, project manager, at the BLM Challis Field Office, telephone: 208– 879–6210; address: 1151 Blue Mountain Road, Challis, ID 83226; email: ksgardner@blm.gov. Persons who use telecommunication devices for the deaf (TDD) may call the Federal Information Relay Service (FIRS) at 800–877–8339 to contact the above individual. The FIRS is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, to leave a message for the above individual. You will receive a reply during normal business hours. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: The draft EIS analyzes the potential environmental effects of the proposed MMPO, Section 404 CWA permit, RMP amendment, and land exchange pursuant to the NEPA. In response to these proposals: (1) The BLM will decide whether to approve the portion of an MMPO involving BLMadministered land under BLM regulations at 43 CFR 3809; (2) The US Forest Service will decide whether to approve the portion of an MMPO involving National Forest System land under Forest Service regulations at 36 CFR 228, Subpart A; (3) The US Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) will decide whether to issue a permit under Section 404 of the CWA and USACE regulations at 33 CFR 320 to discharge fill materials into waters of the US; (4) The BLM will decide whether to amend the Challis Field Office 1999 RMP pursuant to Section 202 of the FLPMA and BLM regulations at 43 CFR 1600 to identify the BLM-administered land in the land exchange proposal as available for disposal (exchange or sale); and (5) The BLM will decide whether to approve a land disposal action. The cooperating agencies for the draft EIS/RMP amendment are the Forest Service, Salmon-Challis National Forest; USACE, Walla Walla District; US Environmental Protection Agency, Region 10; Idaho ADDRESSES: PO 00000 Frm 00051 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 15771 Department of Environmental Quality, Idaho Falls Regional Office; and Idaho Department of Lands, Eastern Idaho Supervisory Area Office. The BLM, Forest Service, and Idaho Department of Lands each administer their respective portions of a single plan of operations for the mine. If the BLM approves the land exchange, Thompson Creek Mining Company (TCMC) would obtain title to nearly all of the BLMadministered land involved with the mine. In such case, the few mine support features (i.e., pipelines, power lines, access roads, and a pump station) remaining on BLM-administered land could continue to be authorized by a portion of the plan of operations administered by the BLM, or by grants for rights-of-ways and special use permits under the FLPMA. In the latter case, only the Forest Service and the Idaho Department of Lands would administer the plan of operations. Regardless, the BLM must issue a decision on the MMPO because any title transfer would not occur until several months after any decision approving an RMP amendment and land disposal action. TCMC owns and operates the mine, which is 7 miles northwest of Clayton and 21 miles southwest of Challis in Custer County, Idaho. The mine has been in operation since 1981 and is authorized for approximately 3,300 acres of surface disturbance, of which approximately 2,300 acres are on private land, approximately 750 acres are on BLM-administered land, and approximately 250 acres are on National Forest System land. The current surface disturbance at the mine is approximately 2,800 acres. The MMPO would allow an approximate 10-year extension of the mine life and expansion of the waste rock and tailings storage facilities, requiring additional authorized surface disturbance on approximately 200 acres of BLMadministered land, 150 acres of National Forest System land, and 80 acres of private land. The land exchange proposal is an offer to exchange approximately 900 acres of private lands owned by TCMC in Custer and Bannock counties for approximately 5,100 acres of selected, BLM-administered land involving the mine in Custer County, including nearly all of the BLM-administered land involved in the MMPO. The offered lands are the Broken Wing Ranch (813 acres) in Custer County and the Garden Creek property (82 acres) in Bannock County. The ranch borders several miles of the Salmon River, and the Garden Creek property contains a portion of the headwaters of Garden Creek. Public E:\FR\FM\21MRN1.SGM 21MRN1 mstockstill on DSK4VPTVN1PROD with NOTICES 15772 Federal Register / Vol. 79, No. 55 / Friday, March 21, 2014 / Notices ownership of these lands would prevent their subdivision and development, enhance habitat for four threatened and endangered fish species and a variety of wildlife, and substantially increase public access to the Lyon Creek drainage in Custer County. The Challis RMP does not identify the selected land as available for disposal. Therefore, in addition to evaluating the land exchange proposal, the draft EIS also evaluates amending the RMP to identify the selected land as suitable for disposal pursuant to the FLPMA. The BLM published the notice of intent to prepare an EIS in the Federal Register on August 3, 2010 (75 FR 45652). The BLM held public meetings in Boise, Idaho on August 23, 2010 and in Challis, Idaho on August 24, 2010. The BLM also published a notice of exchange proposal for 4 consecutive weeks in April and May 2013 in newspapers of general circulation in the counties containing the selected and offered lands. Scoping identified multiple issues for nearly all of the elements of the human environment, e.g., socio-economic factors, water resources, tribal treaty rights, etc. These issues are described in the Scoping and Alternatives report available at http:// www.blm.gov/id/st/en/prog/nepa_ register/TCM-exlx_EIS.html. In response to these issues, the agencies have developed a set of MMPO alternatives and a set of independent land disposal alternatives which are described in the Scoping and Alternatives report and analyzed in the draft EIS: D Alternative M1—No Action. TCMC would complete mining and reclamation under the current mining plan of operations (Phase 7), with molybdenum mining ending in approximately 2015. Approximately 2,800 acres would be disturbed; D Alternative M2—MMPO as submitted by TCMC. TCMC would complete mining and reclamation under the proposed MMPO (Phase 8), with molybdenum mining ending in approximately 2025. The two existing waste rock storage facilities would be enlarged. Approximately 3,300 acres would be disturbed (which includes the disturbance of Alternative M1); D Alternative M3—No Name Waste Rock Facility. A variation of Alternative M2 in which TCMC would develop a new waste rock storage facility in the No Name drainage, with less waste rock placed into the two existing waste rock storage facilities. Approximately 3,400 acres would be disturbed (which includes the disturbance of Alternative M1); VerDate Mar<15>2010 17:18 Mar 20, 2014 Jkt 232001 D Alternative L1—No Action. The BLM would not amend the RMP and the land exchange would not occur. Mining would occur according to the selected MMPO alternative. That is, the MMPO alternatives do not depend on the outcome of the land disposal alternatives; TCMC would not operate the mine any differently if the BLMadministered land in the land exchange proposal were owned by TCMC or continued to be administered by the BLM. This is the case for all of the land disposal alternatives; D Alternative L2—Land Exchange Proposal submitted by TCMC. The BLM would amend the RMP, TCMC would acquire up to approximately 5,100 acres of BLM-administered land, and the US would acquire up to approximately 900 acres of private land that would be administered by the BLM. D Alternative L3—Land Sale. The BLM would amend the RMP allowing conveyance of up to approximately 5,100 acres of BLM-administered land to TCMC via a sale at the appraised fair market value pursuant to Section 203 of the FLPMA; D Alternative L4—Reduced Area Land Exchange, Fee Simple. The BLM would amend the RMP, TCMC would acquire approximately 3,600 acres of BLMadministered land, and the US would acquire approximately 30 percent less private land by fair market value compared to Alternative L2; and D Alternative L5—Reduced Area Land Exchange, Easement. The BLM would amend the RMP and TCMC would acquire approximately 5,100 acres of BLM-administered land, but with a conservation easement on approximately 1,500 acres. The US would accordingly acquire approximately 10 percent less private land by fair market value. The BLM and Forest Service preferred MMPO alternative is Alternative M2. The BLM preferred land disposal alternative is Alternative L2. Pursuant to the notice of intent (75 FR 45652) and this notice, the BLM is complying with the requirements in 43 CFR 1610.2 to notify the public of potential amendments to land use plans, based on the analysis in an EIS. The BLM will continue to integrate the land use planning process with the NEPA process for the EIS. The BLM will utilize and coordinate the NEPA commenting process to satisfy the public involvement for Section 106 of the National Historic Preservation Act (16 U.S.C. 470f) as provided for in 36 CFR 800.2(d)(3). The responsible officials for the proposed actions are the Field Manager, Challis Field Office, BLM (MMPO); District Manager, Idaho PO 00000 Frm 00052 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 Falls District, BLM (land disposal); State Director, Idaho State Office, BLM (RMP amendment); Forest Supervisor, Salmon-Challis National Forest, Forest Service (MMPO); and Chief, Regulatory Division, Walla Walla District, USACE (404 Permit). Please be aware that your entire comment—including any personal identifying information such as your address, phone number, email address, etc.—may be made publicly available at any time. While you may ask the BLM to withhold your personal identifying information from public review, we cannot guarantee that we will be able to do so. Authority: 42 U.S.C. 4321 et seq.; 33 CFR 325.3; 43 CFR 1610.2. Todd Kuck, Challis Field Manager. [FR Doc. 2014–06113 Filed 3–20–14; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4310–GG–P DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR Bureau of Land Management [LLCON02000 L16100000.DQ0000] Notice of Availability of the Proposed Resource Management Plan and Final Environmental Impact Statement for the Kremmling Field Office, Colorado Bureau of Land Management, Interior. ACTION: Notice of Availability. AGENCY: In accordance with the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969, as amended, and the Federal Land Policy and Management Act of 1976, as amended, the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) has prepared a Proposed Resource Management Plan (RMP)/Final Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) for the Kremmling Field Office Planning Area and by this notice is announcing its availability. DATES: The BLM planning regulations provide that any person who meets the conditions as described in the regulations may protest the BLM’s Proposed RMP/Final EIS. A person who meets the conditions and files a protest must file the protest within 30 days of the date that the Environmental Protection Agency publishes its notice of availability in the Federal Register. ADDRESSES: The BLM sent copies of the Kremmling Proposed RMP/Final EIS to affected Federal, State, and local government agencies; other stakeholders; Tribal governments; and members of the public who requested copies. Copies of the Proposed RMP/ Final EIS are available for public SUMMARY: E:\FR\FM\21MRN1.SGM 21MRN1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 79, Number 55 (Friday, March 21, 2014)]
[Notices]
[Pages 15771-15772]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2014-06113]


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DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR

Bureau of Land Management

[LLIDI03000.L71220000.EX0000.XXXX.LVTFD0977180; IDI-33145, IDI-35728]


Notice of Availability of the Draft Environmental Impact 
Statement and Resource Management Plan Amendment for the Proposed 
Modification to the Thompson Creek Mine Plan of Operations, Section 404 
Clean Water Act Permit Application, and Public Land Disposal, Custer 
and Bannock Counties, Idaho

AGENCY: Bureau of Land Management, Interior.

ACTION: Notice of Availability.

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

SUMMARY: In compliance with the National Environmental Policy Act of 
1969, as amended (NEPA), and the Federal Land Policy and Management Act 
of 1976, as amended (FLPMA), the Bureau of Land Management (BLM), 
Challis Field Office, Idaho, has prepared a draft environmental impact 
statement (EIS) and draft resource management plan (RMP) amendment for 
a proposed modified mining plan of operations (MMPO) for the Thompson 
Creek molybdenum mine and a related Section 404 Clean Water Act (CWA) 
permit application and land exchange proposal. The BLM announces the 
availability of the draft EIS/RMP amendment and the start of the 
comment period for the draft EIS/RMP amendment.

DATES: To ensure comments will be considered, the BLM must receive 
written comments on the draft EIS/RMP amendment within 90 days 
following the date the Environmental Protection Agency publishes a 
Notice of Availability in the Federal Register. The BLM will announce 
future public meetings and any other public involvement activities at 
least 15 days in advance through public notices, media releases, and/or 
mailings.

ADDRESSES: You may submit comments or request your name be added to the 
mailing list for the project by any of these methods:
    [ssquf] Email: BLM_ID_TCM_EIS@blm.gov;
    [ssquf] Fax: 208-879-6219 (please reference ``TCM EIS''); or
    [ssquf] Mail: TCM EIS, Bureau of Land Management, Challis Field 
Office, 1151 Blue Mountain Road, Challis, ID 83226.
    Copies of the draft EIS/RMP amendment are available in the BLM 
Challis Field Office at the address listed above from 7:45 a.m. to 4:30 
p.m., Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays. Copies of the 
draft EIS/RMP amendment are also available at http://www.blm.gov/id/st/en/prog/nepa_register/TCM-exlx_EIS.html.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Ken Gardner, project manager, at the 
BLM Challis Field Office, telephone: 208-879-6210; address: 1151 Blue 
Mountain Road, Challis, ID 83226; email: ksgardner@blm.gov. Persons who 
use telecommunication devices for the deaf (TDD) may call the Federal 
Information Relay Service (FIRS) at 800-877-8339 to contact the above 
individual. The FIRS is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, to 
leave a message for the above individual. You will receive a reply 
during normal business hours.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: The draft EIS analyzes the potential 
environmental effects of the proposed MMPO, Section 404 CWA permit, RMP 
amendment, and land exchange pursuant to the NEPA. In response to these 
proposals: (1) The BLM will decide whether to approve the portion of an 
MMPO involving BLM-administered land under BLM regulations at 43 CFR 
3809; (2) The US Forest Service will decide whether to approve the 
portion of an MMPO involving National Forest System land under Forest 
Service regulations at 36 CFR 228, Subpart A; (3) The US Army Corps of 
Engineers (USACE) will decide whether to issue a permit under Section 
404 of the CWA and USACE regulations at 33 CFR 320 to discharge fill 
materials into waters of the US; (4) The BLM will decide whether to 
amend the Challis Field Office 1999 RMP pursuant to Section 202 of the 
FLPMA and BLM regulations at 43 CFR 1600 to identify the BLM-
administered land in the land exchange proposal as available for 
disposal (exchange or sale); and (5) The BLM will decide whether to 
approve a land disposal action. The cooperating agencies for the draft 
EIS/RMP amendment are the Forest Service, Salmon-Challis National 
Forest; USACE, Walla Walla District; US Environmental Protection 
Agency, Region 10; Idaho Department of Environmental Quality, Idaho 
Falls Regional Office; and Idaho Department of Lands, Eastern Idaho 
Supervisory Area Office.
    The BLM, Forest Service, and Idaho Department of Lands each 
administer their respective portions of a single plan of operations for 
the mine. If the BLM approves the land exchange, Thompson Creek Mining 
Company (TCMC) would obtain title to nearly all of the BLM-administered 
land involved with the mine. In such case, the few mine support 
features (i.e., pipelines, power lines, access roads, and a pump 
station) remaining on BLM-administered land could continue to be 
authorized by a portion of the plan of operations administered by the 
BLM, or by grants for rights-of-ways and special use permits under the 
FLPMA. In the latter case, only the Forest Service and the Idaho 
Department of Lands would administer the plan of operations. 
Regardless, the BLM must issue a decision on the MMPO because any title 
transfer would not occur until several months after any decision 
approving an RMP amendment and land disposal action.
    TCMC owns and operates the mine, which is 7 miles northwest of 
Clayton and 21 miles southwest of Challis in Custer County, Idaho. The 
mine has been in operation since 1981 and is authorized for 
approximately 3,300 acres of surface disturbance, of which 
approximately 2,300 acres are on private land, approximately 750 acres 
are on BLM-administered land, and approximately 250 acres are on 
National Forest System land. The current surface disturbance at the 
mine is approximately 2,800 acres. The MMPO would allow an approximate 
10-year extension of the mine life and expansion of the waste rock and 
tailings storage facilities, requiring additional authorized surface 
disturbance on approximately 200 acres of BLM-administered land, 150 
acres of National Forest System land, and 80 acres of private land.
    The land exchange proposal is an offer to exchange approximately 
900 acres of private lands owned by TCMC in Custer and Bannock counties 
for approximately 5,100 acres of selected, BLM-administered land 
involving the mine in Custer County, including nearly all of the BLM-
administered land involved in the MMPO. The offered lands are the 
Broken Wing Ranch (813 acres) in Custer County and the Garden Creek 
property (82 acres) in Bannock County. The ranch borders several miles 
of the Salmon River, and the Garden Creek property contains a portion 
of the headwaters of Garden Creek. Public

[[Page 15772]]

ownership of these lands would prevent their subdivision and 
development, enhance habitat for four threatened and endangered fish 
species and a variety of wildlife, and substantially increase public 
access to the Lyon Creek drainage in Custer County. The Challis RMP 
does not identify the selected land as available for disposal. 
Therefore, in addition to evaluating the land exchange proposal, the 
draft EIS also evaluates amending the RMP to identify the selected land 
as suitable for disposal pursuant to the FLPMA.
    The BLM published the notice of intent to prepare an EIS in the 
Federal Register on August 3, 2010 (75 FR 45652). The BLM held public 
meetings in Boise, Idaho on August 23, 2010 and in Challis, Idaho on 
August 24, 2010. The BLM also published a notice of exchange proposal 
for 4 consecutive weeks in April and May 2013 in newspapers of general 
circulation in the counties containing the selected and offered lands. 
Scoping identified multiple issues for nearly all of the elements of 
the human environment, e.g., socio-economic factors, water resources, 
tribal treaty rights, etc. These issues are described in the Scoping 
and Alternatives report available at http://www.blm.gov/id/st/en/prog/nepa_register/TCM-exlx_EIS.html.
    In response to these issues, the agencies have developed a set of 
MMPO alternatives and a set of independent land disposal alternatives 
which are described in the Scoping and Alternatives report and analyzed 
in the draft EIS:
    [ssquf] Alternative M1--No Action. TCMC would complete mining and 
reclamation under the current mining plan of operations (Phase 7), with 
molybdenum mining ending in approximately 2015. Approximately 2,800 
acres would be disturbed;
    [ssquf] Alternative M2--MMPO as submitted by TCMC. TCMC would 
complete mining and reclamation under the proposed MMPO (Phase 8), with 
molybdenum mining ending in approximately 2025. The two existing waste 
rock storage facilities would be enlarged. Approximately 3,300 acres 
would be disturbed (which includes the disturbance of Alternative M1);
    [ssquf] Alternative M3--No Name Waste Rock Facility. A variation of 
Alternative M2 in which TCMC would develop a new waste rock storage 
facility in the No Name drainage, with less waste rock placed into the 
two existing waste rock storage facilities. Approximately 3,400 acres 
would be disturbed (which includes the disturbance of Alternative M1);
    [ssquf] Alternative L1--No Action. The BLM would not amend the RMP 
and the land exchange would not occur. Mining would occur according to 
the selected MMPO alternative. That is, the MMPO alternatives do not 
depend on the outcome of the land disposal alternatives; TCMC would not 
operate the mine any differently if the BLM-administered land in the 
land exchange proposal were owned by TCMC or continued to be 
administered by the BLM. This is the case for all of the land disposal 
alternatives;
    [ssquf] Alternative L2--Land Exchange Proposal submitted by TCMC. 
The BLM would amend the RMP, TCMC would acquire up to approximately 
5,100 acres of BLM-administered land, and the US would acquire up to 
approximately 900 acres of private land that would be administered by 
the BLM.
    [ssquf] Alternative L3--Land Sale. The BLM would amend the RMP 
allowing conveyance of up to approximately 5,100 acres of BLM-
administered land to TCMC via a sale at the appraised fair market value 
pursuant to Section 203 of the FLPMA;
    [ssquf] Alternative L4--Reduced Area Land Exchange, Fee Simple. The 
BLM would amend the RMP, TCMC would acquire approximately 3,600 acres 
of BLM-administered land, and the US would acquire approximately 30 
percent less private land by fair market value compared to Alternative 
L2; and
    [ssquf] Alternative L5--Reduced Area Land Exchange, Easement. The 
BLM would amend the RMP and TCMC would acquire approximately 5,100 
acres of BLM-administered land, but with a conservation easement on 
approximately 1,500 acres. The US would accordingly acquire 
approximately 10 percent less private land by fair market value.
    The BLM and Forest Service preferred MMPO alternative is 
Alternative M2. The BLM preferred land disposal alternative is 
Alternative L2. Pursuant to the notice of intent (75 FR 45652) and this 
notice, the BLM is complying with the requirements in 43 CFR 1610.2 to 
notify the public of potential amendments to land use plans, based on 
the analysis in an EIS. The BLM will continue to integrate the land use 
planning process with the NEPA process for the EIS. The BLM will 
utilize and coordinate the NEPA commenting process to satisfy the 
public involvement for Section 106 of the National Historic 
Preservation Act (16 U.S.C. 470f) as provided for in 36 CFR 
800.2(d)(3). The responsible officials for the proposed actions are the 
Field Manager, Challis Field Office, BLM (MMPO); District Manager, 
Idaho Falls District, BLM (land disposal); State Director, Idaho State 
Office, BLM (RMP amendment); Forest Supervisor, Salmon-Challis National 
Forest, Forest Service (MMPO); and Chief, Regulatory Division, Walla 
Walla District, USACE (404 Permit).
    Please be aware that your entire comment--including any personal 
identifying information such as your address, phone number, email 
address, etc.--may be made publicly available at any time. While you 
may ask the BLM to withhold your personal identifying information from 
public review, we cannot guarantee that we will be able to do so.

    Authority: 42 U.S.C. 4321 et seq.; 33 CFR 325.3; 43 CFR 1610.2.

Todd Kuck,
Challis Field Manager.
[FR Doc. 2014-06113 Filed 3-20-14; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 4310-GG-P