Updated Collision Risk Model Priors for Estimating Eagle Fatalities at Wind Energy Facilities, 56365-56366 [2018-24718]

Download as PDF Federal Register / Vol. 83, No. 219 / Tuesday, November 13, 2018 / Notices 60-Day notice of information collection; new request for comment. ACTION: The Department of Homeland Security (DHS), Science and Technology Directorate (S&T) Next Generation First Responder (NGFR) program seeks to develop and integrate next-generation technologies by testing and evaluating first responder technologies during integration demonstration events. During these events, first responder participants use prototype technologies in a fictional scenario—such as a missing person case, an active shooter event, or a chemical spill—and are asked to share their feedback on how the technology worked in the context of their emergency response to the scenario, including whether the technologies made them more effective, efficient or safe. The information collected during these events will help provide insight about how to improve technologies for first responders and will help DHS define whether or not the event was successful. Additionally, the feedback and evaluation DHS receives will be used in knowledge products that will then be distributed to other state and local first responder organizations. DATES: Comments are encouraged and accepted until January 14, 2019. ADDRESSES: You may submit comments, identified by docket number DHS– 2018–0042, at: • Federal eRulemaking Portal: http:// www.regulations.gov. Please follow the instructions for submitting comments. • Mail and hand delivery or commercial delivery: Science and Technology Directorate, ATTN: Chief Information Office—Mary Cantey, 245 Murray Drive, Mail Stop 0202, Washington, DC 20528. Instructions: All submissions received must include the agency name and docket number DHS–2018–0042. All comments received will be posted without change to http:// www.regulations.gov, including any personal information provided. Please note that comments submitted by fax or email and those submitted after the comment period will not be accepted. Docket: For access to the docket to read background documents or comments received, go to http:// www.regulations.gov. amozie on DSK3GDR082PROD with NOTICES1 SUMMARY: FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: DHS/S&T/NGFR Program Manager: Sridhar Kowdley, Sridhar.kowdley@ hq.dhs.gov or 202–254–8804 (Not a toll free number). SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: DHS, in accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act (PRA), 44 U.S.C. 3501 et VerDate Sep<11>2014 17:34 Nov 09, 2018 Jkt 247001 seq., provides the general public and Federal agencies with an opportunity to comment on proposed, revised, and continuing collections of information. DHS is soliciting comments on the proposed information collection request (ICR) that is described below. DHS is especially interested in public comments addressing the following issues: (1) Is this collection necessary to the proper functions of the Department; (2) will this information be processed and used in a timely manner; (3) is the estimate of burden accurate; (4) how might the Department enhance the quality, utility, and clarity of the information to be collected; and (5) how might the Department minimize the burden of this collection on the respondents, including through the use of information technology? Please note that written comments received in response to this notice will be considered public records. Title of Collection: Next Generation First Responder Technology Evaluation Survey. Type of Review: New. Respondents/Affected Public: Law Enforcement, Firefighters. Frequency of Collection: Quarterly. Average Burden per Response: 15 minutes. Total Estimated Number of Annual Responses: 900. Total Estimated Number of Annual Burden Hours: 225. Gregg Piermarini, Chief Technology Officer/Deputy CIO, Science and Technology Directorate. [FR Doc. 2018–24707 Filed 11–9–18; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 9110–9F–P INTER–AMERICAN FOUNDATION Sunshine Act Meetings November 19, 2018, 1:30 p.m.—5:10 p.m. PLACE: Offices of Baker/McKenzie LLP, 815 Connecticut Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20006. STATUS: Meeting of the Board of Directors and Advisory Council, open to the public, portion closed to the public. MATTERS TO BE CONSIDERED: D Approval of Past Meeting Minutes D President’s Report D Management Report D Advisory Council D Executive Session D Adjournment PORTIONS CLOSED TO THE PUBLIC: D Executive session closed to the public as provided for by 22 CFR 1004.4(b) & (f) TIME AND DATE: PO 00000 Frm 00092 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 56365 CONTACT PERSON FOR MORE INFORMATION: Paul Zimmerman, General Counsel, (202) 683–7118. Paul Zimmerman, General Counsel. [FR Doc. 2018–24837 Filed 11–8–18; 4:15 pm] BILLING CODE 7025–01–P DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR Fish and Wildlife Service [FWS–HQ–MB–2017–0092; 91200– FF09M20300–189–FXMB123109EAGLE] Updated Collision Risk Model Priors for Estimating Eagle Fatalities at Wind Energy Facilities Fish and Wildlife Service, Interior. ACTION: Reopening of the comment period. AGENCY: The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service) uses a collision risk model (CRM) to predict the number of golden and bald eagles that may be killed at new wind facilities. The model incorporates existing information on eagle exposure and collision probability in the form of prior distributions (priors). The Service has updated the priors for both species of eagle and, on June 21 of this year, announced the availability of a report of the analysis conducted to generate the new priors (83 FR 28858). The notice solicited public comments on how the Service should use the new bald eagle priors. Today’s notice reopens the comment period for 30 days, and provides additional information requested by commenters. DATES: To ensure consideration of written comments, they must be submitted on or before December 13, 2018. ADDRESSES: You may submit written comments by one of the following methods: Electronically: Go to the Federal eRulemaking Portal: http:// www.regulations.gov. Search for FWS– HQ–MB–2017–0092, which is the docket number for this notice, and follow the directions for submitting comments. By hard copy: Submit by U.S. mail or hand-delivery to Public Comments Processing, Attn: FWS–HQ–MB–2017– 0092; Division of Policy, Performance, and Management Programs; U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service; MS: BPHC; 5275 Leesburg Pike, Falls Church, VA 22041– 3803. We will post all comments on https:// www.regulations.gov. This generally SUMMARY: E:\FR\FM\13NON1.SGM 13NON1 56366 Federal Register / Vol. 83, No. 219 / Tuesday, November 13, 2018 / Notices means that we will post any personal information you provide us (see Request for Information below for more information). We request that you send comments by only one of the methods described above. We will post all information received on http://www.regulations.gov. This generally means that we will post any personal information you provide us (see the Public Availability of Comments section below for more information). Ken Richkus, at 703–358–1780 (telephone), or ken_richkus@fws.gov (email). Individuals who are hearing impaired or speech impaired may call the Federal Relay Service at 800–877–8337 for TTY assistance. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: amozie on DSK3GDR082PROD with NOTICES1 FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Background The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service) uses a collision risk model (CRM) to predict the number of golden and bald eagles that may be killed at new wind facilities (USFWS 2013; New et al. 2015). The CRM incorporates existing knowledge of eagle use around a proposed wind facility (exposure) and the probability of an eagle colliding with an operating turbine (collision probability). The CRM is constructed using a Bayesian framework, and as such incorporates existing information on eagle exposure and collision probability in the form of prior distributions (priors). The priors are formally combined with site-specific data on exposure and the amount of hazardous area and operational time for a site to estimate the expected number of annual eagle collision fatalities. The Service recently updated the priors for both species of eagle using all available data that meet specific criteria, substantially more data than were available when the original priors were established. We released a report of the analysis undertaken to generate the updated priors and announced the availability of the report in a June 21, 2018, Federal Register notice published on (83 FR 28858). In that notice we asked for public input on options for how we should apply the new bald eagle priors. Several of the comments we received during the initial comment period requested that the Service provide the values for the shape and rate parameters of the gamma and beta distributions described in the referenced report. In response to these comments, we have posted an updated version of the report that provides those parameter values on the Service’s website at: VerDate Sep<11>2014 17:34 Nov 09, 2018 Jkt 247001 https://www.fws.gov/birds/ management/managedspecies/ eaglemanagement.php. You can also find the report on the Federal eRulemaking Portal: http:// www.regulations.gov. Search for FWS– HQ–MB–2017–0092. Because the bald eagle collision prior is based on data from only 14 sites that do not span the range of bald eagle density conditions that exist across the country, the prior may not be as representative as it would be if data from a wider range of location had been available. Given this uncertainty, the Service is considering three alternatives for how to incorporate species-specific priors for bald eagles into the CRM and fatality modeling process: (1) Use the updated species-specific priors, and use the 80th quantile of the CRM fatality estimates as the initial permitted take number for permits, as is the current practice. (2) Use the updated species-specific priors, but because the status of bald eagles is secure, adopt a risk-tolerant policy for bald eagles and select a more liberal quantile on the CRM fatality distribution as the initial permitted take number for this species. (3) Given the limitations in data available to inform the bald eagle priors, initiate an expert elicitation process to further refine the bald eagle priors. Under any of these scenarios, the Service would use data submitted under permits to make updates to the priors in the future. Alternative 1 would mean that for a similar level of eagle use observed at a project site, the Service would use higher fatality estimates for bald eagles than for golden eagles. Alternative 2 would be a decision by the Service to be more ‘risk-tolerant’ for bald eagles. This would mean that initial fatality predictions would be lower, however it would also likely mean that more permits would have to be amended to increase the permitted take over time (i.e., the Service would be underestimating take more often). Alternative 3 would be a decision by the Service that more information is needed to understand the potential variability of exposure and collision probability for bald eagles. Such a process could result in either higher or lower (or more variable) priors. We are soliciting input from the public on these three alternatives. We are not seeking input on the CRM itself, which has been peerreviewed and been the subject of multiple rounds of public comment in the past. PO 00000 Frm 00093 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 Public Availability of Comments Written comments we receive become part of the public record associated with this action. Before including your address, phone number, email address, or other personal identifying information in your comment, you should be aware that the 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. All submissions from organizations or businesses, and from individuals identifying themselves as representatives or officials of organizations or businesses, will be made available for public disclosure in their entirety. Dated: October 29, 2018. Andrea Travnicek, Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary, Water and Science, Exercising the authority of the Assistant Secretary for Fish and Wildlife and Parks. [FR Doc. 2018–24718 Filed 11–9–18; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4333–55–P DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR Fish and Wildlife Service [FWS–R4–ES–2018–N107; FXES11140400000–189–FF04E00000] Endangered Species; Recovery Permit Applications Fish and Wildlife Service, Interior. ACTION: Notice of receipt of permit applications; request for comments. AGENCY: We, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, have received applications for permits to conduct activities intended to enhance the propagation or survival of endangered species under the Endangered Species Act of 1973, as amended. We invite the public and local, State, Tribal, and Federal agencies to comment on these applications. Before issuing any of the requested permits, we will take into consideration any information that we receive during the public comment period. DATES: We must receive written data or comments on the applications by December 13, 2018. ADDRESSES: Reviewing Documents: Documents and other information submitted with the applications are available for review, subject to the requirements of the SUMMARY: E:\FR\FM\13NON1.SGM 13NON1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 83, Number 219 (Tuesday, November 13, 2018)]
[Notices]
[Pages 56365-56366]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2018-24718]


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DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR

Fish and Wildlife Service

[FWS-HQ-MB-2017-0092; 91200-FF09M20300-189-FXMB123109EAGLE]


Updated Collision Risk Model Priors for Estimating Eagle 
Fatalities at Wind Energy Facilities

AGENCY: Fish and Wildlife Service, Interior.

ACTION: Reopening of the comment period.

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

SUMMARY: The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service) uses a collision 
risk model (CRM) to predict the number of golden and bald eagles that 
may be killed at new wind facilities. The model incorporates existing 
information on eagle exposure and collision probability in the form of 
prior distributions (priors). The Service has updated the priors for 
both species of eagle and, on June 21 of this year, announced the 
availability of a report of the analysis conducted to generate the new 
priors (83 FR 28858). The notice solicited public comments on how the 
Service should use the new bald eagle priors. Today's notice reopens 
the comment period for 30 days, and provides additional information 
requested by commenters.

DATES: To ensure consideration of written comments, they must be 
submitted on or before December 13, 2018.

ADDRESSES: You may submit written comments by one of the following 
methods:
    Electronically: Go to the Federal e-Rulemaking Portal: http://www.regulations.gov. Search for FWS-HQ-MB-2017-0092, which is the 
docket number for this notice, and follow the directions for submitting 
comments.
    By hard copy: Submit by U.S. mail or hand-delivery to Public 
Comments Processing, Attn: FWS-HQ-MB-2017-0092; Division of Policy, 
Performance, and Management Programs; U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service; 
MS: BPHC; 5275 Leesburg Pike, Falls Church, VA 22041-3803.
    We will post all comments on https://www.regulations.gov. This 
generally

[[Page 56366]]

means that we will post any personal information you provide us (see 
Request for Information below for more information).
    We request that you send comments by only one of the methods 
described above. We will post all information received on http://www.regulations.gov. This generally means that we will post any 
personal information you provide us (see the Public Availability of 
Comments section below for more information).

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Ken Richkus, at 703-358-1780 
(telephone), or [email protected] (email). Individuals who are 
hearing impaired or speech impaired may call the Federal Relay Service 
at 800-877-8337 for TTY assistance.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: 

Background

    The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service) uses a collision risk 
model (CRM) to predict the number of golden and bald eagles that may be 
killed at new wind facilities (USFWS 2013; New et al. 2015). The CRM 
incorporates existing knowledge of eagle use around a proposed wind 
facility (exposure) and the probability of an eagle colliding with an 
operating turbine (collision probability).
    The CRM is constructed using a Bayesian framework, and as such 
incorporates existing information on eagle exposure and collision 
probability in the form of prior distributions (priors). The priors are 
formally combined with site-specific data on exposure and the amount of 
hazardous area and operational time for a site to estimate the expected 
number of annual eagle collision fatalities.
    The Service recently updated the priors for both species of eagle 
using all available data that meet specific criteria, substantially 
more data than were available when the original priors were 
established. We released a report of the analysis undertaken to 
generate the updated priors and announced the availability of the 
report in a June 21, 2018, Federal Register notice published on (83 FR 
28858). In that notice we asked for public input on options for how we 
should apply the new bald eagle priors. Several of the comments we 
received during the initial comment period requested that the Service 
provide the values for the shape and rate parameters of the gamma and 
beta distributions described in the referenced report. In response to 
these comments, we have posted an updated version of the report that 
provides those parameter values on the Service's website at: https://www.fws.gov/birds/management/managedspecies/eaglemanagement.php. You 
can also find the report on the Federal e-Rulemaking Portal: http://www.regulations.gov. Search for FWS-HQ-MB-2017-0092.
    Because the bald eagle collision prior is based on data from only 
14 sites that do not span the range of bald eagle density conditions 
that exist across the country, the prior may not be as representative 
as it would be if data from a wider range of location had been 
available. Given this uncertainty, the Service is considering three 
alternatives for how to incorporate species-specific priors for bald 
eagles into the CRM and fatality modeling process:
    (1) Use the updated species-specific priors, and use the 80th 
quantile of the CRM fatality estimates as the initial permitted take 
number for permits, as is the current practice.
    (2) Use the updated species-specific priors, but because the status 
of bald eagles is secure, adopt a risk-tolerant policy for bald eagles 
and select a more liberal quantile on the CRM fatality distribution as 
the initial permitted take number for this species.
    (3) Given the limitations in data available to inform the bald 
eagle priors, initiate an expert elicitation process to further refine 
the bald eagle priors.
    Under any of these scenarios, the Service would use data submitted 
under permits to make updates to the priors in the future.
    Alternative 1 would mean that for a similar level of eagle use 
observed at a project site, the Service would use higher fatality 
estimates for bald eagles than for golden eagles. Alternative 2 would 
be a decision by the Service to be more `risk-tolerant' for bald 
eagles. This would mean that initial fatality predictions would be 
lower, however it would also likely mean that more permits would have 
to be amended to increase the permitted take over time (i.e., the 
Service would be underestimating take more often). Alternative 3 would 
be a decision by the Service that more information is needed to 
understand the potential variability of exposure and collision 
probability for bald eagles. Such a process could result in either 
higher or lower (or more variable) priors. We are soliciting input from 
the public on these three alternatives. We are not seeking input on the 
CRM itself, which has been peer-reviewed and been the subject of 
multiple rounds of public comment in the past.

Public Availability of Comments

    Written comments we receive become part of the public record 
associated with this action. Before including your address, phone 
number, email address, or other personal identifying information in 
your comment, you should be aware that the 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. All submissions from 
organizations or businesses, and from individuals identifying 
themselves as representatives or officials of organizations or 
businesses, will be made available for public disclosure in their 
entirety.

    Dated: October 29, 2018.
Andrea Travnicek,
Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary, Water and Science, Exercising the 
authority of the Assistant Secretary for Fish and Wildlife and Parks.
[FR Doc. 2018-24718 Filed 11-9-18; 8:45 am]
 BILLING CODE 4333-55-P