Umpqua and Diamond Lake Districts, Umpqua National Forest, Oregon, Calf Copeland Restoration Project, 35745-35746 [2017-16129]

Download as PDF Federal Register / Vol. 82, No. 146 / Tuesday, August 1, 2017 / Notices Individuals who use telecommunication devices for the deaf (TDD) may call the Federal Information Relay Service (FIRS) at 1–800–877–8339 between 8:00 a.m. and 8:00 p.m., Eastern Standard Time, Monday through Friday. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: The purpose of the meeting is to review, evaluate, and recommend project proposals to be funded with Title II money. The meeting is open to the public. The agenda will include time for people to make oral statements of three minutes or less. Individuals wishing to make an oral statement should request in writing by August 11, 2017, 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 to make oral comments must be sent to Mike Blakeman, RAC Coordinator, Rio Grande NF Supervisor’s Office, 1803 West U.S. Highway 160, Monte Vista, Colorado, 81144; by email to mblakeman@fs.fed.us; or via facsimile to 719–852–6250. 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, please contact the person listed in the section titled FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT. All reasonable accommodation requests are managed on a case by case basis. Dated: July 10, 2017. Glenn Casamass, Associate Deputy Chief, National Forest System. [FR Doc. 2017–16125 Filed 7–31–17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3411–15–P Send written comments to 2900 NW Stewart Parkway, Oregon 97471. Comments may also be sent via email to comments-pacificnorthwestumpqua-northumpqua@fs.fed.us, or via facsimile to 970–957–3283. Forest Service Umpqua and Diamond Lake Districts, Umpqua National Forest, Oregon, Calf Copeland Restoration Project Forest Service, USDA. Notice of intent to prepare an Environmental Impact Statement. AGENCY: mstockstill on DSK30JT082PROD with NOTICES ACTION: Calf and Copeland Creek are major tributaries to the North Umpqua River and lie in the very center of the Umpqua National Forest. The 51,650 acre planning area is within a mixedseverity fire regime landscape in which SUMMARY: 20:13 Jul 31, 2017 Comments concerning the scope of the analysis must be received by August 31, 2017. The Draft Environmental Impact Statement is expected December, 2018 and the Final Environmental Impact Statement is expected July, 2019. DATES: ADDRESSES: DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE VerDate Sep<11>2014 the steep slopes and canyons historically tended to burn hot while the benches and ridges tended towards high-frequency, low-severity fire. As a consequence, the benches and ridges developed open stands of mixed-age Douglas-fir, sugar pine, ponderosa pine and incense-cedar. Fire suppression and past timber harvest have converted these areas to overstocked stands of predominately young Douglas-fir and white fir that are rapidly choking out the pine and leaving the entire landscape at risk to uncharacteristic wildfire. The Umpqua National Forest has witnessed a sharp increase in wildfire over the last couple of decades. During this period, tens of thousands of acres have burned within the planning area and the immediately adjacent watersheds, about 20,000 acres of which were stand replacement fire within habitat for the northern spotted owl. This project proposes a combination of timber harvest, non-commercial thinning, and prescribed fire to reduce stem densities and improve the fuel profiles in plantations as well as in older stands with sugar or ponderosa pine. The project also proposes to create strategically placed shaded fuel breaks along roads to help manage wildfire to reduce the risk of stand replacement fire in the remaining late-successional and old-growth stands. Finally, the project would provide log placement in lower Calf Creek to improve stream conditions, restore two wetlands and possibly decommission or close roads to improve watershed conditions. Jkt 241001 FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Richard Helliwell at 541–957–3337, rhelliwell@fs.fed.us or Amy Nathanson at 541–957–3338, anathanson02@ fs.fed.us. Individuals who use telecommunication devices for the deaf (TDD) may call the Federal Information Relay Service (FIRS) at 1–800–877–8339 between 8 a.m. and 8 p.m., Eastern Time, Monday through Friday. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: PO 00000 Frm 00003 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 35745 Purpose and Need for Action The purpose of this project is to provide greater landscape resiliency to wildfire and other disturbances. Integral to maintaining landscape resiliency is maintenance of legacy ponderosa and sugar pine and recruitment of new pine to begin replacing the trees that have been lost to competition in the wake of decades of fire suppression. Also essential to restoring fire resiliency is the need to restore the historic species composition and structure where it has been altered due to past timber management. In order to truly improve landscape resiliency it would be necessary to group management actions, as much as practical, into ecologically significant units that would allow fire to function more similarly to how it did historically. There is a need to manage for old-growth and late-successional habitat for the northern spotted owl and other old forest species to compensate, in part, for the many thousands of acres that have been converted to early seral habitat due to recent stand-replacement fires in and adjacent to the planning area. Finally, there is a need to improve aquatic conditions that have been altered through roads and past timber harvest. Proposed Action Restoration of mixed-conifer stands with sugar pine or ponderosa pine would occur on 1,777 acres. Treatment would consist of removal of all conifers under 20–24 inches diameter breast height (DBH) within 20–25 feet of the dripline of all healthy pine over 20 inches DBH. Overall canopy cover in the stands would be reduced to 40–60% canopy closure. No trees over 20–24″ DBH would be removed. Non-commercial thinning, girdling or burning would occur on 185 acres. Noncommercial thinning would be comprised of predominately conifers under 7″ DBH, although larger trees up to 24″ DBH may be cut and left within 20 feet of the dripline of large pines. In some cases trees up to 24″ DBH could also be girdled in the vicinity of large pines rather than felled. Fuels treatments may consist of pile and burning or broadcast burning or both. Thinning would occur on 1,147 acres of previously managed stands. All of these stands had been clearcut between 1956 and 1975 and planted to predominately Douglas-fir. These stands would be thinned to 40–60% canopy closure and small gaps of 0.5 to 3 acres would be created and planted to rustresistant sugar pine or ponderosa pine. A 50 foot no entry buffer would be left along all streams, allowing for thinning E:\FR\FM\01AUN1.SGM 01AUN1 35746 Federal Register / Vol. 82, No. 146 / Tuesday, August 1, 2017 / Notices within the riparian reserve area outside of that 50 feet. Shaded fuel breaks would be created along about 28 miles of road. The fuel break would remove conifers less than 7″ DBH and ladder fuels up to 150 feet on either side of the road. This would result in up to 1,033 acres of shaded fuel breaks although 216 of these acres overlaps with other proposed treatment stands. Log placement would occur at eight locations along lower Calf Creek. The failing sump along Forest Service road 4750–200 would be restored to a series of three small wetlands. The small earthen dam would be removed and the new wetlands contoured in to take its place. The wetland at Little Oak Flats that is currently being drained by Forest Service road 4770–030 would be restored to retain approximately its natural hydrologic state. About six miles of road would be decommissioned, including the last 1.7 miles of Forest Service road 2801 that follows Copeland Creek. About 13 miles of road have been identified as not currently needed or expected to be needed within the next twenty years. These would be put into storage that would include pulling the culverts such that they would no longer be drivable. Of these, about 10 miles would be closed to all vehicle traffic while about three miles would still be accessible to motorized vehicles under 50″ in width. mstockstill on DSK30JT082PROD with NOTICES Preliminary Issues Preliminary issues include vegetation management in areas designated as Late Seral Reserves under the Northwest Forest Plan as well as vegetation management in designated critical habitat for the threatened northern spotted owl. Management of the road system is an issue that has been identified for this project area. Noncommercial vegetation management in inventoried roadless areas and areas that are currently undeveloped is also an issue for this project. 20:13 Jul 31, 2017 Jkt 241001 [FR Doc. 2017–16129 Filed 7–31–17; 8:45 am] DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE Forest Service Davy Crockett–Sam Houston Resource Advisory Committee Forest Service, USDA. Notice of meeting. AGENCY: The Davy Crockett–Sam Houston Resource Advisory Committee (RAC) will meet in Ratcliff, Texas. The committee is authorized under the Secure Rural Schools and Community Self-Determination Act (the Act) and operates in compliance with the Federal Advisory Committee Act. The purpose of the committee is to improve collaborative relationships and to provide advice and recommendations to the Forest Service concerning projects and funding consistent with the Act. RAC information can be found at the following Web site: https://cloudappsusda-gov.force.com/FSSRS/RAC_ Page?id=001t0000002JcvhAAC. The meeting will be held on August 17, 2017, from 3:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m. All RAC meetings are subject to cancellation. For status of meeting prior to attendance, please contact the person listed under FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT. DATES: The meeting will be held at Davy Crockett Ranger District, ADDRESSES: PO 00000 Frm 00004 Fmt 4703 Conference Room, 18551 State Highway 7 East, Kennard, Texas. Participants who would like to attend by teleconference or by video conference, please contact the person listed under FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT. Written comments may be submitted as described under SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION. All comments, including names and addresses when provided, are placed in the record and are available for public inspection and copying. The public may inspect comments received at Davy Crockett Ranger District. Please call ahead to facilitate entry into the building. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Michelle Rowe, RAC Coordinator, by phone at (936) 655–2299 extension 224 or via email at lrowe@fs.fed.us. Individuals who use telecommunication devices for the deaf (TDD) may call the Federal Information Relay Service (FIRS) at 1–800–877–8339 between 8:00 a.m. and 8:00 p.m., Eastern Standard Time, Monday through Friday. The purpose of the meeting is to: 1. Introduce new members, 2. Elect a new chairman, and 3. Review and approve new RAC projects. The meeting is open to the public. The agenda will include time for people to make oral statements of three minutes or less. Individuals wishing to make an oral statement should request in writing by August 1, 2017, 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 to make oral comments must be sent to Gerald Lawrence, Jr., Designated Federal Officer, Davy Crockett Ranger District, 18551 State Highway 7 East, Kennard, Texas 75847; by email to glawrence@ fs.fed.us, or via facsimile to 936–655– 2817. 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, please contact the person listed in the section titled FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT. All reasonable accommodation requests are managed on a case by case basis. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: BILLING CODE 3411–15–P SUMMARY: Nature of Decision To Be Made The deciding officer will decide whether to implement the proposed action, take an alternative action that meets the purpose and need or take no action. VerDate Sep<11>2014 Dated: July 19, 2017. Jeanne M. Higgins, Acting Associate Deputy Chief, National Forest System. ACTION: Responsible Official North Umpqua District Ranger. Scoping Process This notice of intent initiates the scoping process, which guides the development of the environmental impact statement. Public meetings and field trips will be planned for the summer of 2017. These meetings will be announced in the Roseburg News Review and the Umpqua National Forest Web page. It is important that reviewers provide their comments at such times and in such manner that they are useful to the agency’s preparation of the environmental impact statement. Therefore, comments should be provided prior to the close of the comment period and should clearly articulate the reviewer’s concerns and contentions. Comments received in response to this solicitation, including names and addresses of those who comment, will be part of the public record for this proposed action. Comments submitted anonymously will be accepted and considered, however. Sfmt 4703 E:\FR\FM\01AUN1.SGM 01AUN1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 82, Number 146 (Tuesday, August 1, 2017)]
[Notices]
[Pages 35745-35746]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2017-16129]


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DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE

Forest Service


Umpqua and Diamond Lake Districts, Umpqua National Forest, 
Oregon, Calf Copeland Restoration Project

AGENCY: Forest Service, USDA.

ACTION: Notice of intent to prepare an Environmental Impact Statement.

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

SUMMARY: Calf and Copeland Creek are major tributaries to the North 
Umpqua River and lie in the very center of the Umpqua National Forest. 
The 51,650 acre planning area is within a mixed-severity fire regime 
landscape in which the steep slopes and canyons historically tended to 
burn hot while the benches and ridges tended towards high-frequency, 
low-severity fire. As a consequence, the benches and ridges developed 
open stands of mixed-age Douglas-fir, sugar pine, ponderosa pine and 
incense-cedar. Fire suppression and past timber harvest have converted 
these areas to overstocked stands of predominately young Douglas-fir 
and white fir that are rapidly choking out the pine and leaving the 
entire landscape at risk to uncharacteristic wildfire. The Umpqua 
National Forest has witnessed a sharp increase in wildfire over the 
last couple of decades. During this period, tens of thousands of acres 
have burned within the planning area and the immediately adjacent 
watersheds, about 20,000 acres of which were stand replacement fire 
within habitat for the northern spotted owl.
    This project proposes a combination of timber harvest, non-
commercial thinning, and prescribed fire to reduce stem densities and 
improve the fuel profiles in plantations as well as in older stands 
with sugar or ponderosa pine. The project also proposes to create 
strategically placed shaded fuel breaks along roads to help manage 
wildfire to reduce the risk of stand replacement fire in the remaining 
late-successional and old-growth stands. Finally, the project would 
provide log placement in lower Calf Creek to improve stream conditions, 
restore two wetlands and possibly decommission or close roads to 
improve watershed conditions.

DATES: Comments concerning the scope of the analysis must be received 
by August 31, 2017. The Draft Environmental Impact Statement is 
expected December, 2018 and the Final Environmental Impact Statement is 
expected July, 2019.

ADDRESSES: Send written comments to 2900 NW Stewart Parkway, Oregon 
97471. Comments may also be sent via email to comments-pacificnorthwest-umpqua-northumpqua@fs.fed.us, or via facsimile to 970-
957-3283.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Richard Helliwell at 541-957-3337, 
rhelliwell@fs.fed.us or Amy Nathanson at 541-957-3338, 
anathanson02@fs.fed.us.
    Individuals who use telecommunication devices for the deaf (TDD) 
may call the Federal Information Relay Service (FIRS) at 1-800-877-8339 
between 8 a.m. and 8 p.m., Eastern Time, Monday through Friday.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: 

Purpose and Need for Action

    The purpose of this project is to provide greater landscape 
resiliency to wildfire and other disturbances. Integral to maintaining 
landscape resiliency is maintenance of legacy ponderosa and sugar pine 
and recruitment of new pine to begin replacing the trees that have been 
lost to competition in the wake of decades of fire suppression. Also 
essential to restoring fire resiliency is the need to restore the 
historic species composition and structure where it has been altered 
due to past timber management. In order to truly improve landscape 
resiliency it would be necessary to group management actions, as much 
as practical, into ecologically significant units that would allow fire 
to function more similarly to how it did historically. There is a need 
to manage for old-growth and late-successional habitat for the northern 
spotted owl and other old forest species to compensate, in part, for 
the many thousands of acres that have been converted to early seral 
habitat due to recent stand-replacement fires in and adjacent to the 
planning area. Finally, there is a need to improve aquatic conditions 
that have been altered through roads and past timber harvest.

Proposed Action

    Restoration of mixed-conifer stands with sugar pine or ponderosa 
pine would occur on 1,777 acres. Treatment would consist of removal of 
all conifers under 20-24 inches diameter breast height (DBH) within 20-
25 feet of the dripline of all healthy pine over 20 inches DBH. Overall 
canopy cover in the stands would be reduced to 40-60% canopy closure. 
No trees over 20-24'' DBH would be removed.
    Non-commercial thinning, girdling or burning would occur on 185 
acres. Non-commercial thinning would be comprised of predominately 
conifers under 7'' DBH, although larger trees up to 24'' DBH may be cut 
and left within 20 feet of the dripline of large pines. In some cases 
trees up to 24'' DBH could also be girdled in the vicinity of large 
pines rather than felled. Fuels treatments may consist of pile and 
burning or broadcast burning or both.
    Thinning would occur on 1,147 acres of previously managed stands. 
All of these stands had been clearcut between 1956 and 1975 and planted 
to predominately Douglas-fir. These stands would be thinned to 40-60% 
canopy closure and small gaps of 0.5 to 3 acres would be created and 
planted to rust-resistant sugar pine or ponderosa pine. A 50 foot no 
entry buffer would be left along all streams, allowing for thinning

[[Page 35746]]

within the riparian reserve area outside of that 50 feet.
    Shaded fuel breaks would be created along about 28 miles of road. 
The fuel break would remove conifers less than 7'' DBH and ladder fuels 
up to 150 feet on either side of the road. This would result in up to 
1,033 acres of shaded fuel breaks although 216 of these acres overlaps 
with other proposed treatment stands.
    Log placement would occur at eight locations along lower Calf 
Creek. The failing sump along Forest Service road 4750-200 would be 
restored to a series of three small wetlands. The small earthen dam 
would be removed and the new wetlands contoured in to take its place.
    The wetland at Little Oak Flats that is currently being drained by 
Forest Service road 4770-030 would be restored to retain approximately 
its natural hydrologic state. About six miles of road would be 
decommissioned, including the last 1.7 miles of Forest Service road 
2801 that follows Copeland Creek.
    About 13 miles of road have been identified as not currently needed 
or expected to be needed within the next twenty years. These would be 
put into storage that would include pulling the culverts such that they 
would no longer be drivable. Of these, about 10 miles would be closed 
to all vehicle traffic while about three miles would still be 
accessible to motorized vehicles under 50'' in width.

Responsible Official

    North Umpqua District Ranger.

Nature of Decision To Be Made

    The deciding officer will decide whether to implement the proposed 
action, take an alternative action that meets the purpose and need or 
take no action.

Preliminary Issues

    Preliminary issues include vegetation management in areas 
designated as Late Seral Reserves under the Northwest Forest Plan as 
well as vegetation management in designated critical habitat for the 
threatened northern spotted owl. Management of the road system is an 
issue that has been identified for this project area. Noncommercial 
vegetation management in inventoried roadless areas and areas that are 
currently undeveloped is also an issue for this project.

Scoping Process

    This notice of intent initiates the scoping process, which guides 
the development of the environmental impact statement. Public meetings 
and field trips will be planned for the summer of 2017. These meetings 
will be announced in the Roseburg News Review and the Umpqua National 
Forest Web page.
    It is important that reviewers provide their comments at such times 
and in such manner that they are useful to the agency's preparation of 
the environmental impact statement. Therefore, comments should be 
provided prior to the close of the comment period and should clearly 
articulate the reviewer's concerns and contentions.
    Comments received in response to this solicitation, including names 
and addresses of those who comment, will be part of the public record 
for this proposed action. Comments submitted anonymously will be 
accepted and considered, however.

    Dated: July 19, 2017.
Jeanne M. Higgins,
Acting Associate Deputy Chief, National Forest System.
[FR Doc. 2017-16129 Filed 7-31-17; 8:45 am]
 BILLING CODE 3411-15-P