Notice of Intent To Prepare an Integrated Environmental Impact Statement for the Lower Columbia River Federal Navigation Channel Maintenance Plan, 42548-42549 [2017-18988]

Download as PDF 42548 Federal Register / Vol. 82, No. 173 / Friday, September 8, 2017 / Notices c. Water management operating criteria defined during development of the COP will be incorporated into the 2012 WCAs, ENP, and ENP to South Dade Conveyance system Water Control Plan following completion of NEPA. d. A scoping letter will be used to invite comments from Federal, State, and local agencies, affected Indian tribes, and other interested private organizations and individuals. e. All alternative plans will be reviewed under provisions of appropriate laws and regulations, including the Endangered Species Act, Fish and Wildlife Coordination Act, Clean Water Act, and Farmland Protection Policy Act. f. The Draft Environmental Impact Assessment is expected to be available for public review in 2019. Dated: August 22, 2017. Gina Paduano Ralph, Chief, Environmental Branch. [FR Doc. 2017–19065 Filed 9–7–17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3720–58–P DEPARTMENT OF DEFENSE Department of the Army, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Notice of Intent To Prepare an Integrated Environmental Impact Statement for the Lower Columbia River Federal Navigation Channel Maintenance Plan Department of the Army, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, DoD. ACTION: Notice of intent. AGENCY: The Portland District, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (Corps) intends to prepare an integrated Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) and Federal Navigation Channel (FNC) Maintenance Plan, hereafter referred to as the Plan. The purpose of this Plan is to ensure the continued maintenance of the 43-foot deep Lower Columbia River FNC for the next 20 years. The Port of Longview, Port of Kalama, Port of Woodland, Port of Vancouver, and the Port of Portland (collectively the Sponsor Ports) are non-federal sponsors of the project, who will have Oregon and Washington State permitting requirements to execute on the Plan. The Corps will serve as the lead federal agency for purposes of the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA). The Sponsor Ports will serve as cooperating agencies for purposes of NEPA. The Washington ports’ activities in support of the proposed project will be subject to environmental review under chapter 43.21C Revised Code of Washington sradovich on DSK3GMQ082PROD with NOTICES SUMMARY: VerDate Sep<11>2014 17:18 Sep 07, 2017 Jkt 241001 (RCW), the Washington State Environmental Policy Act (SEPA). The Washington Sponsor Ports will be colead agencies under SEPA, and the Port of Longview will serve as the nominal SEPA lead agency for purposes of SEPA compliance. To satisfy the requirements of NEPA and SEPA, the Corps and Sponsor Ports will be jointly preparing an integrated EIS for the Plan. DATES: Written comments for consideration in the development of the scope of the joint NEPA/SEPA EIS are due to the addresses below no later than Thursday, November 16, 2017. Comments may also be made at the public scoping meetings listed in this notice. Additional information related to the public scoping process will be provided through advertisements placed in regional newspapers of general circulation, Public Notice, and on the project Web site at www.nwp.usace.army.mil/lcrchannel maintenance. ADDRESSES: Mailed comments may be sent to: U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Portland District, P.O. Box 2946, Attn: CENWP–PM–E, Portland, Oregon 97208–2946. Email comments to: ColumbiaNavChannel@usace.army.mil. All written comments and materials received, including names and addresses, will become part of the administrative record and may be released to the public. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: For questions regarding the Plan, the EIS, or special accommodations for scoping process participation, please contact Kate Wells, Environmental Resources Specialist; Attn: CENWP–PM–E, P.O. Box 2946, Portland, Oregon 97208– 2946; (503) 808–4664; ColumbiaNavChannel@usace.army.mil. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Project Background. The Lower Columbia River FNC project includes a main channel that is 43 feet deep and generally 600 feet wide, and extends upstream of the Mouth of Columbia River, River Mile (RM) 3 to Vancouver, WA, RM 105.5. The FNC also extends into lower Oregon Slough and includes vessel turning basins at Astoria in Oregon and Longview, Kalama, and Vancouver in Washington. The FNC is maintained using a combination of dredging and hydraulic control works (pile dikes). Advanced maintenance dredging is currently approved up to 5 feet below authorized depth (¥48 feet) and up to 100 feet outside the authorized channel width. For the past several years, dredging 6 to 8 million cubic yards of localized sand shoals has been required annually to provide reliable service for deep-draft PO 00000 Frm 00009 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 navigation. The Corps’ policy requires all federally maintained navigation projects to demonstrate that there is sufficient dredged material placement capacity for a minimum of 20 years. An updated Plan for the Lower Columbia River FNC is needed now because the existing dredged material placement network is nearing capacity and, if insufficient capacity exists, navigation maintenance dredging may be negatively affected. Non-federal project sponsors for the Lower Columbia River FNC include the Port of Portland individually and as representative of the Port of St. Helens in Oregon, and the Port of Longview, the Port of Kalama, the Port of Woodland, and the Port of Vancouver in Washington. These ports are stakeholders in the channel depth maintenance of the Columbia River. Maintenance of the channel depth is necessary for the ports’ and other channel users’ continued industrial economic development and trade promotion. In 2015, the Lower Columbia River FNC was used to transport nearly 55 million tons of cargo valued at $22 billion. Vessels drafting the full authorized channel depth of 43 feet carried approximately 11 million tons of export shipments worth nearly $3 billion in 2015. Tonnage amounts refer to Corps Waterborne Commerce Statistics Center (WCSC) data for the Columbia & Lower Willamette Rivers below Vancouver, WA, and Portland, OR, Waterway as processed by the Corps Channel Portfolio Tool (CPT). Cargo values are estimated by the CPT based on the WCSC tonnage amounts multiplied by national average commodity unit price ($ per ton) data derived from USA Trade Online (https://usatrade.census.gov/). Proposed Project. The Corps will develop the subject Plan in accordance with the procedures for a dredged material management plan in Engineering Regulation 1105–2–100, which governs Corps project formulation, evaluation, and implementation. As a dredged material management plan, it will ensure warranted and environmentally acceptable maintenance of the 43-foot Lower Columbia River FNC for the next 20 years. Specifically, the Plan will be designed to facilitate efficient management of dredged material, accounting for variability of shoaling processes, to provide a reliable channel for deep-draft navigation. The Plan will describe the results of investigations and analyses used to make determinations as to current and forecasted dredging needs and material placement capacity, potential additional E:\FR\FM\08SEN1.SGM 08SEN1 sradovich on DSK3GMQ082PROD with NOTICES Federal Register / Vol. 82, No. 173 / Friday, September 8, 2017 / Notices placement sites, measures to reduce the need to dredge and avoidance, minimization, and mitigation measures as needed. As the non-federal sponsors of the Plan, the Sponsor Ports are required to obtain permits for the dredged material placement sites. To satisfy the requirements of NEPA and SEPA, the Corps and Sponsor Ports will be jointly preparing an integrated EIS for the Plan. Alternatives. The Plan will be developed in accordance with Corps policy to accomplish channel maintenance, including dredged material placement, in the least costly manner that is consistent with sound engineering practice and meets all federal environmental laws. In addition to the No Action Alternative, in which case existing channel maintenance practices will continue in the absence of the Plan, dredged material management alternatives to be considered include: Management of existing sites to extend or expand capacity; various combinations of new sites involving different placement methods, locations and periods of use; measures to reduce dredging requirements, including hydraulic control works and changes to maintenance dimensions. Potential beneficial uses of dredged material (such as fish and wildlife habitat creation and ecosystem restoration) will be assessed. Additional alternatives could be developed during the scoping and evaluation process. Scoping Process/Public Involvement. The Corps and Sponsor Ports invite all affected federal, state, and local agencies, affected Native American Tribes, and other interested parties to participate in the NEPA and SEPA process during development of the Plan and EIS. The purpose of the public scoping process is to provide information to the public, narrow the scope of analysis to significant environmental issues, and serve as a mechanism to solicit agency and public input on alternatives and issues of concern, and ensure full and open participation in scoping of the Draft EIS. A series of public scoping meetings is scheduled for October 2017. The specific dates, times, and locations of the meetings are provided below. Public Scoping Meetings: • Monday, October 2, 2017, 4:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m., Cowlitz County Event Center, 1900 7th Avenue, Longview, Washington. • Thursday, October 5, 2017, 4:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m., Marshall Community Center, 1009 East McLoughlin Boulevard, Vancouver, Washington. • Friday, October 6, 2017, 4:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m., Charles Jordan Community VerDate Sep<11>2014 17:18 Sep 07, 2017 Jkt 241001 Center, 9009 North Foss Avenue, Portland, Oregon. • Monday, October 16, 2017, 4:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m., Meriwether Place, 1070 Columbia Boulevard, St. Helens, Oregon. • Tuesday, October 17, 2017, 4:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m., Columbia River Maritime Museum Barbey Maritime Center, 1792 Marine Drive, Astoria, Oregon. • Thursday, October 19, 2017, 4:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m., Norse Hall, 444 State Route 4, Puget Island, Cathlamet, Washington. Upon completion of the scoping process, the Draft Plan/Draft EIS will be developed. The DEIS will then be circulated for public review and comment. The Corps and Sponsor Ports expect to release the Draft EIS for public review and comment in 2018. The Corps will issue a Notice of Availability in the Federal Register announcing the release of the Draft EIS for public comment. The Sponsor Ports will publish a Notice of Availability of the Draft EIS for public comment in accordance with SEPA regulations. Documents and other important information related to the Plan/EIS will be available for review on the Corps’ project Web site. Aaron L. Dorf, Colonel, Corps of Engineers, District Commander. [FR Doc. 2017–18988 Filed 9–7–17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3720–58–P DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY International Energy Agency Meetings Department of Energy. Notice of meetings. AGENCY: ACTION: The Industry Advisory Board (IAB) to the International Energy Agency (IEA) will meet on September 13, 2017, at the Conference Centre of the French Ministry of Foreign Affairs, 27, Rue de la Convention, 75015 Paris, France, in connection with a joint meeting of the IEA’s Standing Group on Emergency Questions (SEQ) and the IEA’s Standing Group on the Oil Market (SOM) on September 14, 2017, in connection with a meeting of the SEQ on that day. DATES: September 13, 14, 2017. ADDRESSES: 27, Rue de la Convention, 75015 Paris, France. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Thomas Reilly, Assistant General Counsel for International and National Security Programs, Department of Energy, 1000 Independence Avenue SUMMARY: PO 00000 Frm 00010 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 42549 SW., Washington, DC 20585, 202–586– 5000. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: In accordance with section 252(c)(1)(A)(i) of the Energy Policy and Conservation Act (42 U.S.C. 6272(c)(1)(A)(i)) (EPCA), the following notice of meetings is provided: A meeting of the Industry Advisory Board (IAB) to the International Energy Agency (IEA) will be held at the Centre ´ ´ de Conference Ministeriel of the French Ministry of Foreign Affairs Building, 27 Rue de la Convention, 75015 Paris, France, commencing at 9:30 a.m. on September 13, 2017. The purpose of this notice is to permit attendance by representatives of U.S. company members of the IAB at a meeting of the IEA’s Standing Group on Emergency Questions (SEQ), which is scheduled to be held at the same location and time. The IAB will also hold a preparatory meeting among company representatives at the same location at 8:30 a.m. on September 13. The agenda for this preparatory meeting is to review the agenda for the SEQ meeting. The agenda of the SEQ meeting is under the control of the SEQ. It is expected that the SEQ will adopt the following agenda: Draft Agenda of the 152nd Meeting of the SEQ to be held at the Centre de ´ ´ Conference Ministeriel of the French Ministry of Foreign Affairs Building, 27 Rue de la Convention, 75015 Paris, France, 13 September 2017, beginning at 9:30 a.m. Closed SEQ Session—IEA Member Countries Only 1. Adoption of the Agenda 2. Approval of the Summary Record of the 151st Meeting 3. Status of Compliance with IEP Agreement Stockholding Obligations 4. Preparations for the IEA Ministerial 5. Stockholding Methodology Issues Open SEQ Session—Open to Association Countries 6. Update on Study into Legal Systems of Emergency Policy 7. Proposal for Update of 2013 Costbenefit of Stockholding Study 8. Industry Advisory Board Update 9. Mid-term Review of Indonesia 10. Proposal for Energy Security Study for ASEAN +6 11. Update on Preparations for ERE9 12. Mid-term Review of the United Kingdom 13. Outreach —Recent APERC meeting —Recent JOGMEC training for China —Overview of recent activities 14. Update on Cyber Security & Digitalization E:\FR\FM\08SEN1.SGM 08SEN1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 82, Number 173 (Friday, September 8, 2017)]
[Notices]
[Pages 42548-42549]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2017-18988]


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DEPARTMENT OF DEFENSE

Department of the Army, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers


Notice of Intent To Prepare an Integrated Environmental Impact 
Statement for the Lower Columbia River Federal Navigation Channel 
Maintenance Plan

AGENCY: Department of the Army, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, DoD.

ACTION: Notice of intent.

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

SUMMARY: The Portland District, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (Corps) 
intends to prepare an integrated Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) 
and Federal Navigation Channel (FNC) Maintenance Plan, hereafter 
referred to as the Plan. The purpose of this Plan is to ensure the 
continued maintenance of the 43-foot deep Lower Columbia River FNC for 
the next 20 years. The Port of Longview, Port of Kalama, Port of 
Woodland, Port of Vancouver, and the Port of Portland (collectively the 
Sponsor Ports) are non-federal sponsors of the project, who will have 
Oregon and Washington State permitting requirements to execute on the 
Plan. The Corps will serve as the lead federal agency for purposes of 
the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA). The Sponsor Ports will 
serve as cooperating agencies for purposes of NEPA. The Washington 
ports' activities in support of the proposed project will be subject to 
environmental review under chapter 43.21C Revised Code of Washington 
(RCW), the Washington State Environmental Policy Act (SEPA). The 
Washington Sponsor Ports will be co-lead agencies under SEPA, and the 
Port of Longview will serve as the nominal SEPA lead agency for 
purposes of SEPA compliance. To satisfy the requirements of NEPA and 
SEPA, the Corps and Sponsor Ports will be jointly preparing an 
integrated EIS for the Plan.

DATES: Written comments for consideration in the development of the 
scope of the joint NEPA/SEPA EIS are due to the addresses below no 
later than Thursday, November 16, 2017. Comments may also be made at 
the public scoping meetings listed in this notice. Additional 
information related to the public scoping process will be provided 
through advertisements placed in regional newspapers of general 
circulation, Public Notice, and on the project Web site at 
www.nwp.usace.army.mil/lcrchannelmaintenance.

ADDRESSES: Mailed comments may be sent to: U.S. Army Corps of 
Engineers, Portland District, P.O. Box 2946, Attn: CENWP-PM-E, 
Portland, Oregon 97208-2946. Email comments to: 
ColumbiaNavChannel@usace.army.mil. All written comments and materials 
received, including names and addresses, will become part of the 
administrative record and may be released to the public.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: For questions regarding the Plan, the 
EIS, or special accommodations for scoping process participation, 
please contact Kate Wells, Environmental Resources Specialist; Attn: 
CENWP-PM-E, P.O. Box 2946, Portland, Oregon 97208-2946; (503) 808-4664; 
ColumbiaNavChannel@usace.army.mil.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: 
    Project Background. The Lower Columbia River FNC project includes a 
main channel that is 43 feet deep and generally 600 feet wide, and 
extends upstream of the Mouth of Columbia River, River Mile (RM) 3 to 
Vancouver, WA, RM 105.5. The FNC also extends into lower Oregon Slough 
and includes vessel turning basins at Astoria in Oregon and Longview, 
Kalama, and Vancouver in Washington. The FNC is maintained using a 
combination of dredging and hydraulic control works (pile dikes). 
Advanced maintenance dredging is currently approved up to 5 feet below 
authorized depth (-48 feet) and up to 100 feet outside the authorized 
channel width. For the past several years, dredging 6 to 8 million 
cubic yards of localized sand shoals has been required annually to 
provide reliable service for deep-draft navigation. The Corps' policy 
requires all federally maintained navigation projects to demonstrate 
that there is sufficient dredged material placement capacity for a 
minimum of 20 years. An updated Plan for the Lower Columbia River FNC 
is needed now because the existing dredged material placement network 
is nearing capacity and, if insufficient capacity exists, navigation 
maintenance dredging may be negatively affected. Non-federal project 
sponsors for the Lower Columbia River FNC include the Port of Portland 
individually and as representative of the Port of St. Helens in Oregon, 
and the Port of Longview, the Port of Kalama, the Port of Woodland, and 
the Port of Vancouver in Washington. These ports are stakeholders in 
the channel depth maintenance of the Columbia River. Maintenance of the 
channel depth is necessary for the ports' and other channel users' 
continued industrial economic development and trade promotion. In 2015, 
the Lower Columbia River FNC was used to transport nearly 55 million 
tons of cargo valued at $22 billion. Vessels drafting the full 
authorized channel depth of 43 feet carried approximately 11 million 
tons of export shipments worth nearly $3 billion in 2015. Tonnage 
amounts refer to Corps Waterborne Commerce Statistics Center (WCSC) 
data for the Columbia & Lower Willamette Rivers below Vancouver, WA, 
and Portland, OR, Waterway as processed by the Corps Channel Portfolio 
Tool (CPT). Cargo values are estimated by the CPT based on the WCSC 
tonnage amounts multiplied by national average commodity unit price ($ 
per ton) data derived from USA Trade Online (https://usatrade.census.gov/).
    Proposed Project. The Corps will develop the subject Plan in 
accordance with the procedures for a dredged material management plan 
in Engineering Regulation 1105-2-100, which governs Corps project 
formulation, evaluation, and implementation. As a dredged material 
management plan, it will ensure warranted and environmentally 
acceptable maintenance of the 43-foot Lower Columbia River FNC for the 
next 20 years. Specifically, the Plan will be designed to facilitate 
efficient management of dredged material, accounting for variability of 
shoaling processes, to provide a reliable channel for deep-draft 
navigation. The Plan will describe the results of investigations and 
analyses used to make determinations as to current and forecasted 
dredging needs and material placement capacity, potential additional

[[Page 42549]]

placement sites, measures to reduce the need to dredge and avoidance, 
minimization, and mitigation measures as needed. As the non-federal 
sponsors of the Plan, the Sponsor Ports are required to obtain permits 
for the dredged material placement sites. To satisfy the requirements 
of NEPA and SEPA, the Corps and Sponsor Ports will be jointly preparing 
an integrated EIS for the Plan.
    Alternatives. The Plan will be developed in accordance with Corps 
policy to accomplish channel maintenance, including dredged material 
placement, in the least costly manner that is consistent with sound 
engineering practice and meets all federal environmental laws. In 
addition to the No Action Alternative, in which case existing channel 
maintenance practices will continue in the absence of the Plan, dredged 
material management alternatives to be considered include: Management 
of existing sites to extend or expand capacity; various combinations of 
new sites involving different placement methods, locations and periods 
of use; measures to reduce dredging requirements, including hydraulic 
control works and changes to maintenance dimensions. Potential 
beneficial uses of dredged material (such as fish and wildlife habitat 
creation and ecosystem restoration) will be assessed. Additional 
alternatives could be developed during the scoping and evaluation 
process.
    Scoping Process/Public Involvement. The Corps and Sponsor Ports 
invite all affected federal, state, and local agencies, affected Native 
American Tribes, and other interested parties to participate in the 
NEPA and SEPA process during development of the Plan and EIS. The 
purpose of the public scoping process is to provide information to the 
public, narrow the scope of analysis to significant environmental 
issues, and serve as a mechanism to solicit agency and public input on 
alternatives and issues of concern, and ensure full and open 
participation in scoping of the Draft EIS. A series of public scoping 
meetings is scheduled for October 2017. The specific dates, times, and 
locations of the meetings are provided below.
    Public Scoping Meetings:
     Monday, October 2, 2017, 4:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m., Cowlitz 
County Event Center, 1900 7th Avenue, Longview, Washington.
     Thursday, October 5, 2017, 4:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m., 
Marshall Community Center, 1009 East McLoughlin Boulevard, Vancouver, 
Washington.
     Friday, October 6, 2017, 4:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m., Charles 
Jordan Community Center, 9009 North Foss Avenue, Portland, Oregon.
     Monday, October 16, 2017, 4:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m., 
Meriwether Place, 1070 Columbia Boulevard, St. Helens, Oregon.
     Tuesday, October 17, 2017, 4:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m., 
Columbia River Maritime Museum Barbey Maritime Center, 1792 Marine 
Drive, Astoria, Oregon.
     Thursday, October 19, 2017, 4:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m., Norse 
Hall, 444 State Route 4, Puget Island, Cathlamet, Washington.
    Upon completion of the scoping process, the Draft Plan/Draft EIS 
will be developed. The DEIS will then be circulated for public review 
and comment. The Corps and Sponsor Ports expect to release the Draft 
EIS for public review and comment in 2018. The Corps will issue a 
Notice of Availability in the Federal Register announcing the release 
of the Draft EIS for public comment. The Sponsor Ports will publish a 
Notice of Availability of the Draft EIS for public comment in 
accordance with SEPA regulations. Documents and other important 
information related to the Plan/EIS will be available for review on the 
Corps' project Web site.

Aaron L. Dorf,
Colonel, Corps of Engineers, District Commander.
[FR Doc. 2017-18988 Filed 9-7-17; 8:45 am]
 BILLING CODE 3720-58-P