Notice of Intent To Prepare an Environmental Impact Statement and Notice of Public Meetings for a Federal Coal Lease by Application (MTM 105485), Application To Modify Federal Coal Lease (MTM 94378), and Applications To Amend Land Use Permit (MTM 96659), and Land Use Lease (MTM 74913), Big Horn County, MT, 90380-90383 [2016-29969]

Download as PDF 90380 Federal Register / Vol. 81, No. 240 / Wednesday, December 14, 2016 / Notices sradovich on DSK3GMQ082PROD with NOTICES Trust and Casino Project’’ as the subject of your email. Locations Where the FEIS Is Available for Review: The FEIS is available for review during regular business hours at the BIA Pacific Regional Office and the Galt and Elk Grove Branches of the Sacramento Public Library at the addresses noted above in the ADDRESSES section of this notice. The FEIS is also available online at http:// www.wiltoneis.com. To obtain a compact disc copy of the FEIS, please provide your name and address in writing or by voicemail to Mr. John Rydzik, Bureau of Indian Affairs, at the address or phone number above in the FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT section of this notice. Individual paper copies of the DEIS will be provided upon payment of applicable printing expenses by the requestor for the number of copies requested. Public Comment Availability: Comments, including names and addresses of respondents, will be available for public review during regular business hours at the BIA mailing address shown in the ADDRESSES section of this notice. Before including your address, telephone number, email 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. Authority: This notice is published pursuant to Sections 1503.1 and 1506.6(b) of the Council of Environmental Quality Regulations (40 CFR parts 1500 through 1508) implementing the procedural requirements of the NEPA (42 U.S.C. 4321, et seq.), the Department of the Interior NEPA Regulations (43 CFR part 46), and is in the exercise of authority delegated to the Assistant Secretary— Indian Affairs by 209 DM 8. This notice is also published in accordance with Federal general conformity regulations (40 CFR part 93, subpart B). Dated: December 8, 2016. Lawrence S. Roberts, Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary—Indian Affairs. [FR Doc. 2016–29991 Filed 12–13–16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4337–15–P VerDate Sep<11>2014 18:45 Dec 13, 2016 Jkt 241001 DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR Bureau of Land Management [MO #4500069731, 14X.LLMTC02000. L51100000.GA0000.LVEME14CE500] Notice of Intent To Prepare an Environmental Impact Statement and Notice of Public Meetings for a Federal Coal Lease by Application (MTM 105485), Application To Modify Federal Coal Lease (MTM 94378), and Applications To Amend Land Use Permit (MTM 96659), and Land Use Lease (MTM 74913), Big Horn County, MT Bureau of Land Management, Interior. ACTION: Notice. AGENCY: In accordance with Bureau of Land Management (BLM) regulations, the United States Department of the Interior, BLM Miles City Field Office is publishing this notice of intent to prepare an environmental impact statement (EIS) to evaluate the potential impacts of four proposed actions related to coal mining at the Spring Creek Mine in Big Horn County, Montana. The proposed actions involve the potential sale of two tracts of Federal coal through a Lease-By-Application (LBA) and a lease modification application (LMA). Both applications cover proposed additions to an existing Federal coal lease at the Spring Creak Mine. Related to these leasing requests, the EIS will also evaluate proposed amendments to an existing land use permit to maintain access to mine monitoring and gauging stations and an existing land use lease to provide room for the placement of overburden and infrastructure. The EIS will be called the Spring Creek Coal EIS. This notice initiates the public scoping process for the Spring Creek Coal EIS. DATES: Public scoping meetings to provide the public with an opportunity to review the proposals and gain understanding of the coal leasing process will be held by the BLM. The dates and locations of any scoping meetings will be announced at least 15 days in advance through local media outlets and through the Miles City BLM Web site at: www.blm.gov/mt/st/en/fo/ miles_city_field_office.html. At the meetings, the public is invited to submit comments and resource information, plus identify issues or concerns to be considered in the environmental analysis. The BLM can best use public SUMMARY: PO 00000 Frm 00063 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 input if comments and resource information are submitted in writing by February 13, 2017. We will provide additional opportunities for public participation upon publication of the Draft EIS. ADDRESSES: Please submit written comments or concerns to the BLM Miles City Field Office, Attn: Irma Nansel, 111 Garryowen Road, Miles City, MT 59301. Written comments or resource information may also be hand delivered to the BLM Miles City Field Office. Comments may be sent electronically to BLM_MT_MCFO_SCCEIS@blm.gov. For electronic submission, please include ‘‘Spring Creek Coal EIS/Irma Nansel’’ in the subject line. Members of the public may examine documents pertinent to this proposal by visiting the Miles City Field Office during its business hours (7:45 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.), Monday through Friday, except holidays. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Irma Nansel, Planning and Environmental Coordinator; telephone 406–233–3653. Persons who use a telecommunications device for the deaf (TDD) may call the Federal Relay Service (FRS) at 1–800– 877–8339 to contact the above individual during normal business hours. The FRS is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week, to leave a message or question with the above individual. You will receive a reply during normal business hours. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Spring Creek Coal LLC (SCC) submitted four applications to the BLM, Montana State Office in 2012 and 2013. The four applications are as follows: A. On February 15, 2013, SCC submitted LBA MTM 105485 for the Spring Creek Northwest and Spring Creek Southeast tracts. The LBA encompasses approximately 1,602.57 acres (containing approximately 198.2 million mineable tons of coal) adjacent to the Spring Creek Mine. Since decertification of the Powder River Federal Coal Region as a Federal coal production region by the Powder River Regional Coal Team (PRRCT) in 1990, leasing is permitted to take place under the existing regulations on an application basis, in accordance with 43 CFR 3425.1–5. The PRRCT reviewed the proposed Spring Creek Northwest and Spring Creek Southeast tracts in the application and recommended that the Montana State Office begin processing the application. This LBA consists of the following acreage: E:\FR\FM\14DEN1.SGM 14DEN1 Federal Register / Vol. 81, No. 240 / Wednesday, December 14, 2016 / Notices 90381 Acres Principal Meridian, Montana Township 8 South, Range 39 East: Sec. 8 .................................................................................. Sec. 9 .................................................................................. Sec. 17 ................................................................................ Sec. 35 ................................................................................ Township 9 South, Range 39 East: Sec. 1 .................................................................................. Sec. 2 .................................................................................. Township 9 South, Range 40 East: Sec. 6 .................................................................................. B. On December 20, 2012, SCC applied for a lease modification to Federal coal lease MTM 94378, for the Spring Creek Northeast tract, consisting of about 170 acres (containing approximately 7.9 million mineable S1⁄2NE1⁄4SE1⁄4 ............................................................................ S1⁄2NW1⁄4SE1⁄4 ........................................................................... SW1⁄4SE1⁄4 .................................................................................. SE1⁄4SE1⁄4 ................................................................................... S1⁄2NW1⁄4SW1⁄4 .......................................................................... SW1⁄4 SW1⁄4 ............................................................................... SE1⁄4SW1⁄4 .................................................................................. NE1⁄4NE1⁄4 .................................................................................. NW1⁄4NE1⁄4 ................................................................................. N1⁄2SW1⁄4NE1⁄4 ........................................................................... N1⁄2SE1⁄4NE1⁄4 ............................................................................ NE1⁄4 ........................................................................................... SE1⁄4 ........................................................................................... 20 20 40 40 20 40 40 40 40 20 20 160 160 Lot 1 ........................................................................................... Lot 2 ........................................................................................... Lot 3 ........................................................................................... Lot 4 ........................................................................................... NW1⁄4NE1⁄4 ................................................................................. SW1⁄4NE1⁄4 ................................................................................. NW1⁄4 .......................................................................................... E1⁄2NW1⁄4SE1⁄4 ........................................................................... E1⁄2SW1⁄4SE1⁄4 ............................................................................ NE1⁄4 ........................................................................................... 40.20 40.58 40.39 39.92 40 40 160 20 20 160 Lot 5 ........................................................................................... Lot 6 ........................................................................................... Lot 7 ........................................................................................... S1⁄2SE1⁄4NW1⁄4 ........................................................................... NE1⁄4SW1⁄4 ................................................................................. SE1⁄4SW1⁄4 .................................................................................. S1⁄2NE1⁄4SE1⁄4 ............................................................................ NW1⁄4NW1⁄4SE1⁄4 ........................................................................ S1⁄2NW1⁄4SE1⁄4 ........................................................................... SW1⁄4SE1⁄4 .................................................................................. SE1⁄4SE1⁄4 ................................................................................... 37.12 37.16 37.20 20 40 40 20 10 20 40 40 tons of coal) adjacent to the Spring Creek Mine. On May 9, 2016, the application was modified to reduce the tract acreage to 150 acres. The tract reserve value did not change as a result of the acreage reduction. If approved, the acreage covered by the LMA would be added to the existing lease and is listed below. Consistent with applicable statutory authority, the proposed LMA acreage does not exceed the original lease acreage of (1,117.70 acres): Acres Principal Meridian, Montana sradovich on DSK3GMQ082PROD with NOTICES Township 8 South, Range 39 East: Sec. 13 ................................................................................ Sec. 14 ................................................................................ VerDate Sep<11>2014 18:45 Dec 13, 2016 Jkt 241001 PO 00000 Frm 00064 NW1⁄4SW1⁄4NE1⁄4 ........................................................................ SW1⁄4SW1⁄4NE1⁄4 ........................................................................ SE1⁄4SW1⁄4NE1⁄4 ......................................................................... SW1⁄4NE1⁄4NW1⁄4 ........................................................................ SE1⁄4NE1⁄4NW1⁄4 ......................................................................... NE1⁄4NW1⁄4NW1⁄4 ........................................................................ NW1⁄4NW1⁄4NW1⁄4 ....................................................................... SE1⁄4NW1⁄4NW1⁄4 ........................................................................ NE1⁄4SE1⁄4NW1⁄4 ......................................................................... NW1⁄4SE1⁄4NW1⁄4 ........................................................................ SE1⁄4SE1⁄4NW1⁄4 ......................................................................... NW1⁄4NE1⁄4SE1⁄4 ......................................................................... SW1⁄4NE1⁄4SE1⁄4 ......................................................................... NE1⁄4NW1⁄4SE1⁄4 ......................................................................... NE1⁄4NE1⁄4NE1⁄4 .......................................................................... Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 E:\FR\FM\14DEN1.SGM 14DEN1 10 10 10 10 10 10 10 10 10 10 10 10 10 10 10 90382 Federal Register / Vol. 81, No. 240 / Wednesday, December 14, 2016 / Notices C. On December 23, 2013, SCC submitted an application to amend land use permit (LUP) MTM 96659, adding 175 acres to the permit and removing 320 acres currently included within the permit that overlap the Spring Creek Southeast LBA tract. The LUP amendment would maintain access to mine monitoring areas and gauging stations by utilizing existing two-track roads and trails. The LUP use will not exceed 3 years, in accordance with 43 CFR 2920.1–1(b), and will not cause appreciable damage or disturbance to the public lands, their resources or improvements in accordance with 43 CFR 2920.2–2(a). The acreage to be added to LUP MTM 96659 are: Acres Principal Meridian, Montana Township 8 South, Range 39 East: Sec. 20 ................................................................................ Sec. 22 ................................................................................ Sec. 27 ................................................................................ Township 9 South, Range 40 East: Sec. 7 .................................................................................. Sec. 8 .................................................................................. S1⁄2NE1⁄4 ..................................................................................... SW1⁄4SW1⁄4NE1⁄4 ........................................................................ S1⁄2SE1⁄4SW1⁄4NE1⁄4 ................................................................... NE1⁄4SW1⁄4 ................................................................................. 80 10 5 40 S1⁄2SW1⁄4SW1⁄4NE1⁄4 .................................................................. S1⁄2SE1⁄4SW1⁄4NE1⁄4 ................................................................... S1⁄2SW1⁄4SE1⁄4NE1⁄4 ................................................................... S1⁄2SE1⁄4SE1⁄4NE1⁄4 .................................................................... S1⁄2SW1⁄4NW1⁄4 .......................................................................... 5 5 5 5 20 Acres to be removed from LUP MTM 96659 are: Acres Township 8 South, Range 39 East: Sec. 35 ................................................................................ D. On December 23, 2013, SCC submitted an application in accordance with 43 CFR 2920.2–3 to amend noncompetitive land use lease (LUL) E1⁄2 .............................................................................................. MTM 74913, adding 255 acres to the existing lease and removing approximately 195 acres that overlap the Spring Creek Southeast LBA tract. A 320 Notice of Realty Action was published in the Federal Register in parallel with this notice. The lands added to LUL MTM 74913 are as follows: Acres Principal Meridian, Montana Township 8 South, Range 39 East: Sec. 22 ................................................................................ Township 9 South, Range 39 East: Sec. 1 .................................................................................. Township 9 South, Range 40 East: Sec. 7 .................................................................................. Sec. 8 .................................................................................. N1⁄2SW1⁄4NE1⁄4 ........................................................................... N1⁄2SE1⁄4SW1⁄4NE1⁄4 ................................................................... SE1⁄4SE1⁄4NE1⁄4 .......................................................................... W1⁄2SE1⁄4NE1⁄4 ........................................................................... 20 5 10 20 SE1⁄4SW1⁄4 .................................................................................. 40 ⁄ NE1⁄4 ....................................................................................... N1⁄2SW1⁄4NE1⁄4 ........................................................................... N1⁄2SW1⁄4NE1⁄4 ........................................................................... N1⁄2SW1⁄4SE1⁄4NE1⁄4 ................................................................... N1⁄2SE1⁄4SE1⁄4NE1⁄4 .................................................................... N1⁄2SE1⁄4SW1⁄4NE1⁄4 ................................................................... N1⁄2SW1⁄4SW1⁄4NE1⁄4 .................................................................. N1⁄2SW1⁄4NW1⁄4 .......................................................................... 80 20 20 5 5 5 5 20 12 sradovich on DSK3GMQ082PROD with NOTICES Acres to be removed from LUL MTM 74913 are: Acres Township 8 South, Range 39 East: Sec. 35 ................................................................................ VerDate Sep<11>2014 18:45 Dec 13, 2016 Jkt 241001 PO 00000 Frm 00065 NE1⁄4NE1⁄4 .................................................................................. SE1⁄4NE1⁄4 .................................................................................. E1⁄2NW1⁄4NE1⁄4 ........................................................................... E1⁄2NW1⁄4NW1⁄4NE1⁄4 ................................................................. NW1⁄4NW1⁄4NW1⁄4NE1⁄4 .............................................................. E1⁄2SW1⁄4NW1⁄4NE1⁄4 .................................................................. Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 E:\FR\FM\14DEN1.SGM 14DEN1 40 40 20 5 2.5 5 Federal Register / Vol. 81, No. 240 / Wednesday, December 14, 2016 / Notices 90383 Acres NE ⁄ SW ⁄ NE ⁄ ......................................................................... NE1⁄4SE1⁄4SW1⁄4NE1⁄4 ................................................................ E1⁄2NE1⁄4SE1⁄4 ............................................................................ E1⁄2NW1⁄4NE1⁄4SE1⁄4 ................................................................... NE1⁄4SE1⁄4SE1⁄4 .......................................................................... 10 2.5 20 5 10 Lot 5 ........................................................................................... 34.78 14 sradovich on DSK3GMQ082PROD with NOTICES Township 9 South, Range 40 East: Sec. 6 .................................................................................. The Spring Creek Mine operates under an existing approved surface mining permit from the State of Montana. The Montana Department of Environmental Quality, the Montana Department of Natural Resources and Conservation, and the OSMRE will be cooperating agencies in the preparation of the Spring Creek Coal EIS. Other cooperating agencies may be identified during the scoping process. The actions announced by this Notice are consistent with Secretarial Order (S.O.) 3338, which allows preparatory work, including National Environmental Policy Act and other related analyses, on already-pending applications to continue while the BLM’s programmatic review of the Federal coal program is pending. With respect to the sale of the coal covered by the leasing requests, unless it is shown that one of the exceptions or exclusions to S.O. 3338 applies, the BLM will not make a final leasing decision on the proposed LBA until the programmatic review has concluded. The BLM has confirmed that the LMA is not subject to S.O. 3338’s leasing pause because the lease tract is less than 160 acres. As result, issuane of the LMA can occur prior to the finalization of the programmatic review. If the proposed tracts were to be leased to the applicant, the new lease and the modifications to the existing coal lease, LUP, and LUL, must be incorporated into the existing approved mining and reclamation plans for the mine. Before this can occur, the Secretary of the Interior must approve the revised Mineral Leasing Act (MLA) mining plan for the mine in which the tracts will be included. The OSMRE is the Federal agency that is responsible for recommending approval, approval with conditions, or disapproval of the revised MLA mining plan to the Secretary of the Interior, which is why it is a cooperator in this EIS. In order to help facilitate its analysis, the BLM is providing interested parties the opportunity to submit comments and relevant information to help the BLM identify issues to be considered in preparing the Spring Creek Coal EIS. Issues that have been identified in analyzing the impacts of previous Federal coal-leasing actions in the VerDate Sep<11>2014 18:45 Dec 13, 2016 Jkt 241001 14 14 Montana Powder River Basin (PRB) include: (1) The need for resolution of potential conflicts between existing and proposed oil and gas development and coal mining on the tracts proposed for coal leasing; (2) Potential impacts to big game herds and hunting, Greater SageGrouse, listed threatened and endangered species, and air quality, including greenhouse gas emissions; (3) The need to consider the cumulative impacts of coal leasing decisions combined with other existing and proposed development in the Montana PRB; and (4) Potential site-specific and cumulative impacts on air and water quality. Before including your address, phone number, email 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 public at any time. While you may request to us in your comment to withhold your personal identifying information from public review, we cannot guarantee that we will be able to do so. Authority: 40 CFR 1506.6, 43 CFR 3425.3, and 3425.4. Diane M. Friez, District Manager. [FR Doc. 2016–29969 Filed 12–13–16; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4310–DN–P DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR Bureau of Land Management [LLMTC02200–L14300000–EQ0000; MTM– 74913] Notice of Realty Action: Proposed Amendment to Noncompetitive Land Use Lease MTM 74913, Montana Bureau of Land Management, Interior. ACTION: Notice. AGENCY: The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) has received a proposal to amend Spring Creek Coal, LLC’s existing Land Use Lease (LUL) MTM–74913, pursuant to Section 302 of the Federal Land Policy and Management Act (FLPMA) of 1976, as SUMMARY: PO 00000 Frm 00066 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 amended, for not less than the appraised fair market value. DATES: Interested parties may submit comments on or before January 30, 2017. ADDRESSES: Send written comments to the Field Manager, Miles City Field Office, Bureau of Land Management, 111 Garryowen Road, Miles City, MT 59301. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Beth Klempel, BLM Miles City Field Office, 111 Garryowen Road, Miles City, MT 59301, telephone 406–233–2800, or email bklempel@blm.gov. Persons who use a telecommunications device for the deaf (TDD) may call the Federal Information Relay Service (FIRS) at 1– 800–877–8339 to contact Ms. Klempel during normal business hours. The FIRS is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, to leave a message or question for Ms. Klempel. You will receive a reply during normal business hours. Normal business hours are 7:45 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Monday through Friday, except for Federal holidays. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: The following described lands include the proposed LUL amendment and have been determined as suitable for leasing under Section 302 of FLPMA (43 U.S.C. 1732): Principal Meridian, Montana T. 8 S., R. 39 E., Sec. 22, N1⁄2SW1⁄4NE1⁄4, N1⁄2SE1⁄4SW1⁄4NE1⁄4, W1⁄2SE1⁄4NE1⁄4, and SE1⁄4SE1⁄4NE1⁄4. T. 9 S., R. 39 E., Sec. 1, SE1⁄4SW1⁄4. T. 9 S., R. 40 E., Sec. 7, N1⁄2NE1⁄4, N1⁄2SW1⁄4NE1⁄4, N1⁄2SE1⁄4NE1⁄4, N1⁄2SW1⁄4 SW1⁄4NE 1⁄4, N1⁄2SE1⁄4SW1⁄4NE1⁄4, N1⁄2SW1⁄4SE1⁄4NE1⁄4, and N1⁄2SE1⁄4SE1⁄4NE1⁄4. Sec. 8, N1⁄2SW1⁄4NW1⁄4. The areas described aggregate 255 acres. The BLM is considering amending the existing LUL, which is 222.12 acres. The amendment would modify its size to authorize the surface use of 255 additional acres of public lands for coal mine layback, establishing a highwall crest, topsoil and overburden stockpiles, and transportation and utility corridors on Spring Creek Coal, LLC’s existing E:\FR\FM\14DEN1.SGM 14DEN1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 81, Number 240 (Wednesday, December 14, 2016)]
[Notices]
[Pages 90380-90383]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2016-29969]


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

DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR

Bureau of Land Management

[MO #4500069731, 14X.LLMTC02000.L51100000.GA0000.LVEME14CE500]


Notice of Intent To Prepare an Environmental Impact Statement and 
Notice of Public Meetings for a Federal Coal Lease by Application (MTM 
105485), Application To Modify Federal Coal Lease (MTM 94378), and 
Applications To Amend Land Use Permit (MTM 96659), and Land Use Lease 
(MTM 74913), Big Horn County, MT

AGENCY: Bureau of Land Management, Interior.

ACTION: Notice.

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

SUMMARY: In accordance with Bureau of Land Management (BLM) 
regulations, the United States Department of the Interior, BLM Miles 
City Field Office is publishing this notice of intent to prepare an 
environmental impact statement (EIS) to evaluate the potential impacts 
of four proposed actions related to coal mining at the Spring Creek 
Mine in Big Horn County, Montana. The proposed actions involve the 
potential sale of two tracts of Federal coal through a Lease-By-
Application (LBA) and a lease modification application (LMA). Both 
applications cover proposed additions to an existing Federal coal lease 
at the Spring Creak Mine. Related to these leasing requests, the EIS 
will also evaluate proposed amendments to an existing land use permit 
to maintain access to mine monitoring and gauging stations and an 
existing land use lease to provide room for the placement of overburden 
and infrastructure. The EIS will be called the Spring Creek Coal EIS. 
This notice initiates the public scoping process for the Spring Creek 
Coal EIS.

DATES: Public scoping meetings to provide the public with an 
opportunity to review the proposals and gain understanding of the coal 
leasing process will be held by the BLM. The dates and locations of any 
scoping meetings will be announced at least 15 days in advance through 
local media outlets and through the Miles City BLM Web site at: 
www.blm.gov/mt/st/en/fo/miles_city_field_office.html. At the meetings, 
the public is invited to submit comments and resource information, plus 
identify issues or concerns to be considered in the environmental 
analysis. The BLM can best use public input if comments and resource 
information are submitted in writing by February 13, 2017. We will 
provide additional opportunities for public participation upon 
publication of the Draft EIS.

ADDRESSES: Please submit written comments or concerns to the BLM Miles 
City Field Office, Attn: Irma Nansel, 111 Garryowen Road, Miles City, 
MT 59301. Written comments or resource information may also be hand 
delivered to the BLM Miles City Field Office. Comments may be sent 
electronically to BLM_MT_MCFO_SCCEIS@blm.gov. For electronic 
submission, please include ``Spring Creek Coal EIS/Irma Nansel'' in the 
subject line. Members of the public may examine documents pertinent to 
this proposal by visiting the Miles City Field Office during its 
business hours (7:45 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.), Monday through Friday, except 
holidays.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Irma Nansel, Planning and 
Environmental Coordinator; telephone 406-233-3653. Persons who use a 
telecommunications device for the deaf (TDD) may call the Federal Relay 
Service (FRS) at 1-800-877-8339 to contact the above individual during 
normal business hours. The FRS is available 24 hours a day, seven days 
a week, to leave a message or question with the above individual. You 
will receive a reply during normal business hours.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Spring Creek Coal LLC (SCC) submitted four 
applications to the BLM, Montana State Office in 2012 and 2013. The 
four applications are as follows:
    A. On February 15, 2013, SCC submitted LBA MTM 105485 for the 
Spring Creek Northwest and Spring Creek Southeast tracts. The LBA 
encompasses approximately 1,602.57 acres (containing approximately 
198.2 million mineable tons of coal) adjacent to the Spring Creek Mine. 
Since decertification of the Powder River Federal Coal Region as a 
Federal coal production region by the Powder River Regional Coal Team 
(PRRCT) in 1990, leasing is permitted to take place under the existing 
regulations on an application basis, in accordance with 43 CFR 3425.1-
5. The PRRCT reviewed the proposed Spring Creek Northwest and Spring 
Creek Southeast tracts in the application and recommended that the 
Montana State Office begin processing the application. This LBA 
consists of the following acreage:

[[Page 90381]]



------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                               Acres
------------------------------------------------------------------------
                       Principal Meridian, Montana
------------------------------------------------------------------------
Township 8 South, Range 39 East:
    Sec. 8........................  S\1/2\NE\1/4\SE\1/4\              20
                                    S\1/2\NW\1/4\SE\1/4\              20
                                    SW\1/4\SE\1/4\......              40
                                    SE\1/4\SE\1/4\......              40
    Sec. 9........................  S\1/2\NW\1/4\SW\1/4\              20
                                    SW\1/4\ SW\1/4\.....              40
                                    SE\1/4\SW\1/4\......              40
    Sec. 17.......................  NE\1/4\NE\1/4\......              40
                                    NW\1/4\NE\1/4\......              40
                                    N\1/2\SW\1/4\NE\1/4\              20
                                    N\1/2\SE\1/4\NE\1/4\              20
    Sec. 35.......................  NE\1/4\.............             160
                                    SE\1/4\.............             160
Township 9 South, Range 39 East:
    Sec. 1........................  Lot 1...............           40.20
                                    Lot 2...............           40.58
                                    Lot 3...............           40.39
                                    Lot 4...............           39.92
                                    NW\1/4\NE\1/4\......              40
                                    SW\1/4\NE\1/4\......              40
                                    NW\1/4\.............             160
                                    E\1/2\NW\1/4\SE\1/4\              20
                                    E\1/2\SW\1/4\SE\1/4\              20
    Sec. 2........................  NE\1/4\.............             160
Township 9 South, Range 40 East:
    Sec. 6........................  Lot 5...............           37.12
                                    Lot 6...............           37.16
                                    Lot 7...............           37.20
                                    S\1/2\SE\1/4\NW\1/4\              20
                                    NE\1/4\SW\1/4\......              40
                                    SE\1/4\SW\1/4\......              40
                                    S\1/2\NE\1/4\SE\1/4\              20
                                    NW\1/4\NW\1/4\SE\1/               10
                                     4\.                              20
                                    S\1/2\NW\1/4\SE\1/4\
                                    SW\1/4\SE\1/4\......              40
                                    SE\1/4\SE\1/4\......              40
------------------------------------------------------------------------

    B. On December 20, 2012, SCC applied for a lease modification to 
Federal coal lease MTM 94378, for the Spring Creek Northeast tract, 
consisting of about 170 acres (containing approximately 7.9 million 
mineable tons of coal) adjacent to the Spring Creek Mine. On May 9, 
2016, the application was modified to reduce the tract acreage to 150 
acres. The tract reserve value did not change as a result of the 
acreage reduction. If approved, the acreage covered by the LMA would be 
added to the existing lease and is listed below. Consistent with 
applicable statutory authority, the proposed LMA acreage does not 
exceed the original lease acreage of (1,117.70 acres):

------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                               Acres
------------------------------------------------------------------------
                       Principal Meridian, Montana
------------------------------------------------------------------------
Township 8 South, Range 39 East:
    Sec. 13.......................  NW\1/4\SW\1/4\NE\1/               10
                                     4\.                              10
                                    SW\1/4\SW\1/4\NE\1/               10
                                     4\.
                                    SE\1/4\SW\1/4\NE\1/
                                     4\.
                                    SW\1/4\NE\1/4\NW\1/               10
                                     4\.                              10
                                    SE\1/4\NE\1/4\NW\1/               10
                                     4\.
                                    NE\1/4\NW\1/4\NW\1/
                                     4\.
                                    NW\1/4\NW\1/4\NW\1/               10
                                     4\.                              10
                                    SE\1/4\NW\1/4\NW\1/               10
                                     4\.
                                    NE\1/4\SE\1/4\NW\1/
                                     4\.
                                    NW\1/4\SE\1/4\NW\1/               10
                                     4\.                              10
                                    SE\1/4\SE\1/4\NW\1/               10
                                     4\.
                                    NW\1/4\NE\1/4\SE\1/
                                     4\.
                                    SW\1/4\NE\1/4\SE\1/               10
                                     4\.                              10
                                    NE\1/4\NW\1/4\SE\1/
                                     4\.
    Sec. 14.......................   NE\1/4\NE\1/4\NE\1/              10
                                     4\.
------------------------------------------------------------------------


[[Page 90382]]

    C. On December 23, 2013, SCC submitted an application to amend land 
use permit (LUP) MTM 96659, adding 175 acres to the permit and removing 
320 acres currently included within the permit that overlap the Spring 
Creek Southeast LBA tract. The LUP amendment would maintain access to 
mine monitoring areas and gauging stations by utilizing existing two-
track roads and trails. The LUP use will not exceed 3 years, in 
accordance with 43 CFR 2920.1-1(b), and will not cause appreciable 
damage or disturbance to the public lands, their resources or 
improvements in accordance with 43 CFR 2920.2-2(a). The acreage to be 
added to LUP MTM 96659 are:

------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                               Acres
------------------------------------------------------------------------
                       Principal Meridian, Montana
------------------------------------------------------------------------
Township 8 South, Range 39 East:
    Sec. 20.......................  S\1/2\NE\1/4\.......              80
    Sec. 22.......................  SW\1/4\SW\1/4\NE\1/               10
                                     4\.                               5
                                    S\1/2\SE\1/4\SW\1/
                                     4\NE\1/4\.
    Sec. 27.......................  NE\1/4\SW\1/4\......              40
Township 9 South, Range 40 East:
    Sec. 7........................  S\1/2\SW\1/4\SW\1/                 5
                                     4\NE\1/4\.                        5
                                    S\1/2\SE\1/4\SW\1/
                                     4\NE\1/4\.
                                    S\1/2\SW\1/4\SE\1/                 5
                                     4\NE\1/4\.                        5
                                    S\1/2\SE\1/4\SE\1/
                                     4\NE\1/4\.
    Sec. 8........................  S\1/2\SW\1/4\NW\1/4\              20
------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Acres to be removed from LUP MTM 96659 are:

------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                               Acres
------------------------------------------------------------------------
Township 8 South, Range 39 East:
    Sec. 35.......................  E\1/2\..............             320
------------------------------------------------------------------------

    D. On December 23, 2013, SCC submitted an application in accordance 
with 43 CFR 2920.2-3 to amend noncompetitive land use lease (LUL) MTM 
74913, adding 255 acres to the existing lease and removing 
approximately 195 acres that overlap the Spring Creek Southeast LBA 
tract. A Notice of Realty Action was published in the Federal Register 
in parallel with this notice. The lands added to LUL MTM 74913 are as 
follows:

------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                               Acres
------------------------------------------------------------------------
                       Principal Meridian, Montana
------------------------------------------------------------------------
Township 8 South, Range 39 East:
    Sec. 22.......................  N\1/2\SW\1/4\NE\1/4\              20
                                    N\1/2\SE\1/4\SW\1/                 5
                                     4\NE\1/4\.
                                    SE\1/4\SE\1/4\NE\1/               10
                                     4\.                              20
                                    W\1/2\SE\1/4\NE\1/4\
Township 9 South, Range 39 East:
    Sec. 1........................  SE\1/4\SW\1/4\......              40
Township 9 South, Range 40 East:
    Sec. 7........................  \1/2\NE\1/4\........              80
                                    N\1/2\SW\1/4\NE\1/4\              20
                                    N\1/2\SW\1/4\NE\1/4\              20
                                    N\1/2\SW\1/4\SE\1/                 5
                                     4\NE\1/4\.                        5
                                    N\1/2\SE\1/4\SE\1/
                                     4\NE\1/4\.
                                    N\1/2\SE\1/4\SW\1/                 5
                                     4\NE\1/4\.                        5
                                    N\1/2\SW\1/4\SW\1/
                                     4\NE\1/4\.
    Sec. 8........................  N\1/2\SW\1/4\NW\1/4\              20
------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Acres to be removed from LUL MTM 74913 are:

------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                               Acres
------------------------------------------------------------------------
Township 8 South, Range 39 East:
    Sec. 35.......................  NE\1/4\NE\1/4\......              40
                                    SE\1/4\NE\1/4\......              40
                                    E\1/2\NW\1/4\NE\1/4\              20
                                    E\1/2\NW\1/4\NW\1/                 5
                                     4\NE\1/4\.                      2.5
                                    NW\1/4\NW\1/4\NW\1/                5
                                     4\NE\1/4\.
                                    E\1/2\SW\1/4\NW\1/
                                     4\NE\1/4\.

[[Page 90383]]

 
                                    NE\1/4\SW\1/4\NE\1/               10
                                     4\.                             2.5
                                    NE\1/4\SE\1/4\SW\1/               20
                                     4\NE\1/4\.
                                    E\1/2\NE\1/4\SE\1/4\
                                    E\1/2\NW\1/4\NE\1/                 5
                                     4\SE\1/4\.                       10
                                    NE\1/4\SE\1/4\SE\1/
                                     4\.
Township 9 South, Range 40 East:
    Sec. 6........................  Lot 5...............           34.78
------------------------------------------------------------------------

    The Spring Creek Mine operates under an existing approved surface 
mining permit from the State of Montana. The Montana Department of 
Environmental Quality, the Montana Department of Natural Resources and 
Conservation, and the OSMRE will be cooperating agencies in the 
preparation of the Spring Creek Coal EIS. Other cooperating agencies 
may be identified during the scoping process.
    The actions announced by this Notice are consistent with 
Secretarial Order (S.O.) 3338, which allows preparatory work, including 
National Environmental Policy Act and other related analyses, on 
already-pending applications to continue while the BLM's programmatic 
review of the Federal coal program is pending. With respect to the sale 
of the coal covered by the leasing requests, unless it is shown that 
one of the exceptions or exclusions to S.O. 3338 applies, the BLM will 
not make a final leasing decision on the proposed LBA until the 
programmatic review has concluded. The BLM has confirmed that the LMA 
is not subject to S.O. 3338's leasing pause because the lease tract is 
less than 160 acres. As result, issuane of the LMA can occur prior to 
the finalization of the programmatic review.
    If the proposed tracts were to be leased to the applicant, the new 
lease and the modifications to the existing coal lease, LUP, and LUL, 
must be incorporated into the existing approved mining and reclamation 
plans for the mine. Before this can occur, the Secretary of the 
Interior must approve the revised Mineral Leasing Act (MLA) mining plan 
for the mine in which the tracts will be included. The OSMRE is the 
Federal agency that is responsible for recommending approval, approval 
with conditions, or disapproval of the revised MLA mining plan to the 
Secretary of the Interior, which is why it is a cooperator in this EIS.
    In order to help facilitate its analysis, the BLM is providing 
interested parties the opportunity to submit comments and relevant 
information to help the BLM identify issues to be considered in 
preparing the Spring Creek Coal EIS. Issues that have been identified 
in analyzing the impacts of previous Federal coal-leasing actions in 
the Montana Powder River Basin (PRB) include: (1) The need for 
resolution of potential conflicts between existing and proposed oil and 
gas development and coal mining on the tracts proposed for coal 
leasing; (2) Potential impacts to big game herds and hunting, Greater 
Sage-Grouse, listed threatened and endangered species, and air quality, 
including greenhouse gas emissions; (3) The need to consider the 
cumulative impacts of coal leasing decisions combined with other 
existing and proposed development in the Montana PRB; and (4) Potential 
site-specific and cumulative impacts on air and water quality.
    Before including your address, phone number, email 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 public at any time. While you may request to 
us in your comment to withhold your personal identifying information 
from public review, we cannot guarantee that we will be able to do so.

    Authority:  40 CFR 1506.6, 43 CFR 3425.3, and 3425.4.

Diane M. Friez,
District Manager.
[FR Doc. 2016-29969 Filed 12-13-16; 8:45 am]
 BILLING CODE 4310-DN-P