Basin Electric Power Cooperative, Inc.: Notice of Availability of a Final Environmental Impact Statement, 31085-31086 [2014-12316]

Download as PDF Federal Register / Vol. 79, No. 104 / Friday, May 30, 2014 / Notices 2014 to be scheduled on the agenda. Anyone who would like to bring related matters to the attention of the committee may file written statements with the committee staff before or after the meeting. Written comments and requests for time for oral comments must be sent to Kristi Schroeder, RAC Coordinator, Eldorado NF Supervisor’s Office, 100 Forni Road, Placerville, California 95667; or by email to kschroeder@fs.fed.us, or via facsimile to 530–621–5297. Meeting Accommodations: If you are a person requiring reasonable accommodation, please make requests in advance for sign language interpreting, assistive listening devices or other reasonable accommodation for access to the facility or proceedings by contacting the person listed in the section titled FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT. All reasonable accommodation requests are managed on a case by case basis. Dated: May 20, 2014. Laurence Crabtree, Forest Supervisor. [FR Doc. 2014–12516 Filed 5–29–14; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3411–15–P DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE Rural Utilities Service Basin Electric Power Cooperative, Inc.: Notice of Availability of a Final Environmental Impact Statement Rural Utilities Service, USDA. Notice of Availability of a Final Environmental Impact Statement. AGENCY: ACTION: The Rural Utilities Service (RUS), an agency within the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), has prepared a Final Environmental Impact Statement (FEIS) to meet its responsibilities under the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA), RUS’s implementing regulations, 7 CFR part 1794, and other applicable environmental requirements related to providing financial assistance for Basin Electric Power Cooperative’s (Basin Electric) proposed Antelope Valley Station (AVS) to Neset 345-kV Transmission Project (Project) in North Dakota. RUS will also use the FEIS to meet its responsibilities under Section 106 of the National Historic Preservation Act, 16 U.S.C. 470, and its implementing regulations, ‘‘Protection of Historic Properties’’ (36 CFR part 800). The FEIS addresses the construction, operation, and maintenance of approximately 278 miles of new 345-kV mstockstill on DSK4VPTVN1PROD with NOTICES SUMMARY: VerDate Mar<15>2010 18:23 May 29, 2014 Jkt 232001 single pole transmission line, a 230-kV single pole transmission line, and a double circuit 345/115-kV transmission line, 4 new substations and a switchyard, modifications to 4 existing substations, maintenance access roads, temporary construction roads, river crossings, temporary construction staging sites, and other facilities described previously in the Draft Environmental Impact Statement (DEIS) and Supplemental Draft Environmental Impact Statement (SDEIS). It also addresses comments received during the comment periods for the DEIS and the SDEIS. The overall project area encompasses parts of Dunn, McKenzie, Mercer, Mountrail, and Williams Counties in western North Dakota. DATES: Written comments on the FEIS will be accepted 30 days following the publication of the Environmental Protection Agency’s environmental impact statement receipt notice in the Federal Register. Notices of Availability of FEIS will be published in the local newspapers. After a 30-day public review period on the FEIS, RUS will prepare a Record of Decision for its respective action. The environmental review process is expected to conclude in the summer of 2014. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: To receive copies of the FEIS or request information on the proposed Project, the FEIS process, and RUS financing, contact Mr. Dennis Rankin, Engineering and Environmental Staff, Rural Utilities Service, 1400 Independence Avenue SW., Stop 1571, Washington, DC 20250– 1571, Telephone: (202) 720–1953, or email: dennis.rankin@wdc.usda.gov. Copies of the FEIS will be available for review in local libraries in the project area. Library locations will be published in the local papers. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Basin Electric is a regional wholesale electric generation and transmission cooperative owned and controlled by its member cooperatives. Basin Electric serves approximately 2.5 million customers covering 430,000 square miles in portions of nine states, including Colorado, Iowa, Minnesota, Montana, Nebraska, New Mexico, North Dakota, South Dakota, and Wyoming. Basin Electric has identified the need for additional electric transmission capacity in northwestern North Dakota to meet reliability and system stability requirements for the region resulting from increases in demand and load forecasts. Investigations and analyses conducted for the overall power delivery systems found that without improvements, the flow of power along existing lines may result in local line PO 00000 Frm 00008 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 31085 overloads, especially in the vicinity of Williston, North Dakota. Basin Electric is proposing to construct, own and operate a new 345kV transmission line and associated supporting infrastructure. The entire proposed Project will consist of constructing approximately 278 miles of new single circuit 345-kV, 230-kV and a double circuit 345/115-kV transmission line, the construction of 4 new substations and a switchyard, modifications to 4 existing substations, maintenance access roads, temporary construction roads, river crossings, temporary construction staging sites, and other facilities. The proposed Project would connect to the Integrated System, the high-voltage transmission grid in the upper Great Plains managed by Western, at several locations, including Western’s Williston Substation. The new 345-kV transmission line would start at the AVS Electric Generation Station located near Beulah, North Dakota, and extend west where it would connect with Basin Electric’s existing Charlie Creek 345-kV Substation located near Grassy Butte. The line would then extend north where it would connect with Basin Electric’s proposed Judson Substation near Williston and terminate at Basin Electric’s newly proposed Tande Substation (Alternative C). Additional 230-kV transmission lines would be constructed between the new Judson 345-kV Substation and Western’s existing Williston Substation, between a new 345/230/115-kV substation referred to as the Blue Substation and Western’s existing 230-kV transmission line, and also between the Tande 345-kV Substation and Basin Electric’s existing Neset 230-kV Substation located near Tioga, North Dakota. Three transmission line alternatives, two transmission line variations in the Little Missouri National Grasslands (LMNG), and the No Action alternative were evaluated. Alternative C is described above; Alternative D is similar to Alternative C with the primary difference being the construction of a double-circuit 345 kV line north of Killdeer for 63 miles to the Blue Substation. Alternative E is similar to Alternative D with the primary difference being the construction of two parallel 345-kV transmission lines north of Killdeer rather than a double-circuit line. The variations across the LMNG include double-circuiting the 345-kV line with Western’s existing 230 kV transmission Line. RUS has identified Alternative C as its preferred alternative because it best meets the purpose and E:\FR\FM\30MYN1.SGM 30MYN1 mstockstill on DSK4VPTVN1PROD with NOTICES 31086 Federal Register / Vol. 79, No. 104 / Friday, May 30, 2014 / Notices need and minimizes or mitigates potential impacts. RUS is authorized to make loans and loan guarantees that finance the construction of electric distribution, transmission, and generation facilities, including system improvements and replacements required to furnish and improve electric service in rural areas, as well as demand side management, energy conservation programs, and ongrid and off-grid renewable energy systems. RUS is responsible for completing the environmental review process in processing Basin Electric’s application. RUS is serving as the lead Federal agency, as defined at 40 CFR 1501.5, for preparation of the FEIS. Based on an interconnection with the Western Area Power Administration’s (Western) transmission system, Western has, in accordance with 40 CFR 1501.6, is serving as a cooperating agency for the environmental review of the proposed Project. Western is also serving as the lead Federal agency, in accordance with 36 CFR 800.2(a)(2), for the Section 106 review of cultural resources and the Endangered Species Act (ESA), Section 7 review for threatened and endangered species. The U.S. Forest Service (USFS) may issue a special use permit under the Federal Land Policy Management Act and is also serving as a cooperating agency. Separate Records of Decision (RODs) will be issued by Western and the USFS for their respective actions. It is anticipated that the RODS will be issued in July 2014. The proposed Project is subject to the jurisdiction of the North Dakota Public Service Commission (NDPSC), which has regulatory authority for siting electrical transmission facilities within the State. Basin Electric has submitted applications to the NDPSC for Transmission Corridor and Route Permits. The NDPSC Permits would authorize Basin Electric to construct the proposed Project under North Dakota rules and regulations. RUS has prepared the FEIS to analyze the impacts of its respective Federal actions and the proposed Project in accordance with the NEPA, as amended, Council on Environmental Quality (CEQ) Regulation for Implementing the Procedural Provisions of the NEPA (40 CFR parts 1500–1508), Department of Energy’s NEPA Implementing Procedures (10 CFR part 1021), and RUS Environmental Policies and Procedures (7 CFR part 1794). RUS has already prepared and published a DEIS and a SDEIS which can both be found on the internet at https://www.rurdev.usda.gov/ UWP-AVS-Neset.html. VerDate Mar<15>2010 18:23 May 29, 2014 Jkt 232001 Because the Project covers a large land area and access in some cases has been restricted, Section 106 review will be phased in accordance with 36 CFR 800.4(b)(2) and 800.5(a)(3). Accordingly, Western will complete Section 106 review using a Programmatic Agreement (PA) pursuant to 36 CFR 800.14(b)(1)(ii). RUS, at the request of Western, will manage the development and execution of the PA. RUS may issue the Record of Decision for the proposed Project once the PA has been executed. This Notice of Availability also serves as a notice of proposed floodplain or wetland action. It is anticipated that there will be no effect on floodplains and wetlands by the proposed Project. The majority of the floodplains/ wetlands crossed are associated with river and stream crossings and can be spanned. Some structures may be located in the floodplain of the Little Missouri River; however, no effects to the floodplain are anticipated. James F. Elliott, Acting Assistant Administrator, Electric Programs, USDA, Rural Utilities Service. [FR Doc. 2014–12316 Filed 5–29–14; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE P DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE Rural Utilities Service Notice of Funding Availability and Grant Application Deadlines Rural Utilities Service, USDA. Notice of funds availability; correction. AGENCY: ACTION: The Rural Utilities Service (RUS), an agency of the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), published a notice of funds availability concerning the Distance Learning and Telemedicine (DLT) Grant Program for the Fiscal Year (FY) 2014 competition. The document contained incorrect information with regard to the deadline for electronic submissions. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Sam Morgan, Program Management Analyst, Advanced Services Division, Telecommunications Program, Rural Utilities Service, email: sam.morgan@ wdc.usda.gov, telephone: (202) 690– 4493, fax: (202) 720–1051. Additional point of contact: Norberto Esteves, Acting Director, Advanced Services Division at norberto.esteves@ wdc.usda.gov or at same phone numbers previously listed. SUMMARY: Correction In the Federal Register of May 22, 2014, in FR Doc. 2014–11700, on page PO 00000 Frm 00009 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 29403, in the second column, under the ‘‘F. Deadline caption’’, correct ‘‘2.’’ to read: 2. Electronic grant applications must be received by July 7, 2014 to be eligible for FY 2014 funding. Late or incomplete applications will not be eligible for FY 2014 grant funding. Dated: May 23, 2014. John Charles Padalino, Administrator, Rural Utilities Service. [FR Doc. 2014–12548 Filed 5–29–14; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE P COMMISSION ON CIVIL RIGHTS Notice of Public Meeting of the Illinois Advisory Committee for a Meeting on Discussing the Project Proposal on Hate Crimes in Illinois and a Briefing on Religious Discrimination in Prisons U.S. Commission on Civil Rights. ACTION: Notice of meeting. AGENCY: Notice is hereby given, pursuant to the provisions of the rules and regulations of the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights (Commission) and the Federal Advisory Committee Act that the Illinois Advisory Committee (Committee) will hold a meeting on Thursday, June 12, 2014, for the purpose of discussing and voting on a project proposal regarding hate crimes in Illinois and for gathering information and hearing statements regarding religious discrimination in Illinois prisons. The Committee will have the proposal presented by the Commission’s two Midwestern Regional Office interns and discuss the proposal afterward. The Committee also will hear testimony from the chief chaplain of the state’s Department of Corrections to update information the Committee had obtained on the topic in 2007. The testimony presented at this meeting will provide in part a basis for the Committee’s final recommendations on the topic. Members of the public are invited and welcomed to make statements into the record at the meeting starting at 3:30 p.m. Members of the public who cannot attend in person can listen to the discussion. This meeting is available to the public through the following tollfree call-in number: 888–438–5535, conference ID: 9306519. Any interested member of the public may call this number and listen to the meeting. Callers can expect to incur charges for calls they initiate over wireless lines, and the Commission will not refund any incurred charges. Callers will incur no SUMMARY: E:\FR\FM\30MYN1.SGM 30MYN1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 79, Number 104 (Friday, May 30, 2014)]
[Notices]
[Pages 31085-31086]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2014-12316]


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DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE

Rural Utilities Service


Basin Electric Power Cooperative, Inc.: Notice of Availability of 
a Final Environmental Impact Statement

AGENCY: Rural Utilities Service, USDA.

ACTION: Notice of Availability of a Final Environmental Impact 
Statement.

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

SUMMARY: The Rural Utilities Service (RUS), an agency within the U.S. 
Department of Agriculture (USDA), has prepared a Final Environmental 
Impact Statement (FEIS) to meet its responsibilities under the National 
Environmental Policy Act (NEPA), RUS's implementing regulations, 7 CFR 
part 1794, and other applicable environmental requirements related to 
providing financial assistance for Basin Electric Power Cooperative's 
(Basin Electric) proposed Antelope Valley Station (AVS) to Neset 345-kV 
Transmission Project (Project) in North Dakota. RUS will also use the 
FEIS to meet its responsibilities under Section 106 of the National 
Historic Preservation Act, 16 U.S.C. 470, and its implementing 
regulations, ``Protection of Historic Properties'' (36 CFR part 800).
    The FEIS addresses the construction, operation, and maintenance of 
approximately 278 miles of new 345-kV single pole transmission line, a 
230-kV single pole transmission line, and a double circuit 345/115-kV 
transmission line, 4 new substations and a switchyard, modifications to 
4 existing substations, maintenance access roads, temporary 
construction roads, river crossings, temporary construction staging 
sites, and other facilities described previously in the Draft 
Environmental Impact Statement (DEIS) and Supplemental Draft 
Environmental Impact Statement (SDEIS). It also addresses comments 
received during the comment periods for the DEIS and the SDEIS. The 
overall project area encompasses parts of Dunn, McKenzie, Mercer, 
Mountrail, and Williams Counties in western North Dakota.

DATES: Written comments on the FEIS will be accepted 30 days following 
the publication of the Environmental Protection Agency's environmental 
impact statement receipt notice in the Federal Register. Notices of 
Availability of FEIS will be published in the local newspapers. After a 
30-day public review period on the FEIS, RUS will prepare a Record of 
Decision for its respective action. The environmental review process is 
expected to conclude in the summer of 2014.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: To receive copies of the FEIS or 
request information on the proposed Project, the FEIS process, and RUS 
financing, contact Mr. Dennis Rankin, Engineering and Environmental 
Staff, Rural Utilities Service, 1400 Independence Avenue SW., Stop 
1571, Washington, DC 20250-1571, Telephone: (202) 720-1953, or email: 
dennis.rankin@wdc.usda.gov. Copies of the FEIS will be available for 
review in local libraries in the project area. Library locations will 
be published in the local papers.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Basin Electric is a regional wholesale 
electric generation and transmission cooperative owned and controlled 
by its member cooperatives. Basin Electric serves approximately 2.5 
million customers covering 430,000 square miles in portions of nine 
states, including Colorado, Iowa, Minnesota, Montana, Nebraska, New 
Mexico, North Dakota, South Dakota, and Wyoming. Basin Electric has 
identified the need for additional electric transmission capacity in 
northwestern North Dakota to meet reliability and system stability 
requirements for the region resulting from increases in demand and load 
forecasts. Investigations and analyses conducted for the overall power 
delivery systems found that without improvements, the flow of power 
along existing lines may result in local line overloads, especially in 
the vicinity of Williston, North Dakota.
    Basin Electric is proposing to construct, own and operate a new 
345-kV transmission line and associated supporting infrastructure. The 
entire proposed Project will consist of constructing approximately 278 
miles of new single circuit 345-kV, 230-kV and a double circuit 345/
115-kV transmission line, the construction of 4 new substations and a 
switchyard, modifications to 4 existing substations, maintenance access 
roads, temporary construction roads, river crossings, temporary 
construction staging sites, and other facilities. The proposed Project 
would connect to the Integrated System, the high-voltage transmission 
grid in the upper Great Plains managed by Western, at several 
locations, including Western's Williston Substation.
    The new 345-kV transmission line would start at the AVS Electric 
Generation Station located near Beulah, North Dakota, and extend west 
where it would connect with Basin Electric's existing Charlie Creek 
345-kV Substation located near Grassy Butte. The line would then extend 
north where it would connect with Basin Electric's proposed Judson 
Substation near Williston and terminate at Basin Electric's newly 
proposed Tande Substation (Alternative C). Additional 230-kV 
transmission lines would be constructed between the new Judson 345-kV 
Substation and Western's existing Williston Substation, between a new 
345/230/115-kV substation referred to as the Blue Substation and 
Western's existing 230-kV transmission line, and also between the Tande 
345-kV Substation and Basin Electric's existing Neset 230-kV Substation 
located near Tioga, North Dakota.
    Three transmission line alternatives, two transmission line 
variations in the Little Missouri National Grasslands (LMNG), and the 
No Action alternative were evaluated. Alternative C is described above; 
Alternative D is similar to Alternative C with the primary difference 
being the construction of a double-circuit 345 kV line north of 
Killdeer for 63 miles to the Blue Substation. Alternative E is similar 
to Alternative D with the primary difference being the construction of 
two parallel 345-kV transmission lines north of Killdeer rather than a 
double-circuit line. The variations across the LMNG include double-
circuiting the 345-kV line with Western's existing 230 kV transmission 
Line. RUS has identified Alternative C as its preferred alternative 
because it best meets the purpose and

[[Page 31086]]

need and minimizes or mitigates potential impacts.
    RUS is authorized to make loans and loan guarantees that finance 
the construction of electric distribution, transmission, and generation 
facilities, including system improvements and replacements required to 
furnish and improve electric service in rural areas, as well as demand 
side management, energy conservation programs, and on-grid and off-grid 
renewable energy systems. RUS is responsible for completing the 
environmental review process in processing Basin Electric's 
application. RUS is serving as the lead Federal agency, as defined at 
40 CFR 1501.5, for preparation of the FEIS. Based on an interconnection 
with the Western Area Power Administration's (Western) transmission 
system, Western has, in accordance with 40 CFR 1501.6, is serving as a 
cooperating agency for the environmental review of the proposed 
Project. Western is also serving as the lead Federal agency, in 
accordance with 36 CFR 800.2(a)(2), for the Section 106 review of 
cultural resources and the Endangered Species Act (ESA), Section 7 
review for threatened and endangered species. The U.S. Forest Service 
(USFS) may issue a special use permit under the Federal Land Policy 
Management Act and is also serving as a cooperating agency. Separate 
Records of Decision (RODs) will be issued by Western and the USFS for 
their respective actions. It is anticipated that the RODS will be 
issued in July 2014.
    The proposed Project is subject to the jurisdiction of the North 
Dakota Public Service Commission (NDPSC), which has regulatory 
authority for siting electrical transmission facilities within the 
State. Basin Electric has submitted applications to the NDPSC for 
Transmission Corridor and Route Permits. The NDPSC Permits would 
authorize Basin Electric to construct the proposed Project under North 
Dakota rules and regulations.
    RUS has prepared the FEIS to analyze the impacts of its respective 
Federal actions and the proposed Project in accordance with the NEPA, 
as amended, Council on Environmental Quality (CEQ) Regulation for 
Implementing the Procedural Provisions of the NEPA (40 CFR parts 1500-
1508), Department of Energy's NEPA Implementing Procedures (10 CFR part 
1021), and RUS Environmental Policies and Procedures (7 CFR part 1794). 
RUS has already prepared and published a DEIS and a SDEIS which can 
both be found on the internet at https://www.rurdev.usda.gov/UWP-AVS-Neset.html.
    Because the Project covers a large land area and access in some 
cases has been restricted, Section 106 review will be phased in 
accordance with 36 CFR 800.4(b)(2) and 800.5(a)(3). Accordingly, 
Western will complete Section 106 review using a Programmatic Agreement 
(PA) pursuant to 36 CFR 800.14(b)(1)(ii). RUS, at the request of 
Western, will manage the development and execution of the PA. RUS may 
issue the Record of Decision for the proposed Project once the PA has 
been executed.
    This Notice of Availability also serves as a notice of proposed 
floodplain or wetland action. It is anticipated that there will be no 
effect on floodplains and wetlands by the proposed Project. The 
majority of the floodplains/wetlands crossed are associated with river 
and stream crossings and can be spanned. Some structures may be located 
in the floodplain of the Little Missouri River; however, no effects to 
the floodplain are anticipated.

James F. Elliott,
Acting Assistant Administrator, Electric Programs, USDA, Rural 
Utilities Service.
[FR Doc. 2014-12316 Filed 5-29-14; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE P