Notice of Availability of Draft Environmental Assessment on the Effects of Issuing an Incidental Take Permit No. 23148, 65970-65972 [2019-26006]

Download as PDF 65970 Federal Register / Vol. 84, No. 231 / Monday, December 2, 2019 / Notices Please submit application information by email to CTPBoard@ trade.gov. ADDRESSES: Julie Heizer, National Travel and Tourism Office, U.S. Department of Commerce, 1401 Constitution Avenue NW, MS10003, Washington, DC 20230; telephone: 202–482–0140; email: CTPBoard@trade.gov. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: The Travel Promotion Act of 2009 (TPA) was signed into law on March 4, 2010 and was amended in July 2010 and December 2014. The TPA established the Corporation for Travel Promotion (the Corporation) as a non-profit corporation charged with the development and execution of a plan to (A) provide useful information to those interested in traveling to the United States; (B) identify and address misperceptions regarding U.S. entry policies; (C) maximize economic and diplomatic benefits of travel to the United States through the use of various promotional tools; (D) ensure that international travel benefits all States and the District of Columbia; (E) identify opportunities to promote tourism to rural and urban areas equally, including areas not traditionally visited by international travelers; and (F) give priority to countries and populations most likely to travel to the United States. The Corporation is governed by a Board of Directors, consisting of 11 members with knowledge of international travel promotion or marketing, broadly representing various regions of the United States. The TPA directs the Secretary of Commerce (after consultation with the Secretary of Homeland Security and the Secretary of State) to appoint the Board of Directors for the Corporation. At this time, the Secretary will be selecting five individuals with the appropriate expertise and experience from specific sectors of the travel and tourism industry to serve on the Board as follows: (A) One (1) shall have appropriate expertise and experience in the attractions or recreations sector; (B) One (1) shall have appropriate expertise and experience in immigration law and policy, including visa requirements and United States entry procedures; (C) One (1) shall have appropriate expertise and experience in the land or sea passenger transportation sector; (D) One (1) shall have appropriate expertise and experience in the passenger air sector; and jbell on DSKJLSW7X2PROD with NOTICES FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: VerDate Sep<11>2014 17:10 Nov 29, 2019 Jkt 250001 (E) One (1) shall have appropriate expertise and experience as an official of a State tourism office. To be eligible for Board membership, individuals must have knowledge of international travel promotion or marketing, be a current or former chief executive officer, chief financial officer, or chief marketing officer or have held an equivalent management position. Additional consideration will be given to individuals who have experience working in U.S. multinational entities with marketing budgets, and/or who are audit committee financial experts as defined by the Securities and Exchange Commission (in accordance with 15 U.S.C. 7265). Individuals must be U.S. citizens, and in addition, cannot be federally registered lobbyists or registered as a foreign agent under the Foreign Agents Registration Act of 1938, as amended. Those selected for the Board must be able to meet the time and effort commitments of the Board. Board members serve at the discretion of the Secretary of Commerce (who may remove any member of the Board for good cause). The term of office for the member of the Board having appropriate expertise and experience as an official of a State tourism office shall be two (2) years, as this individual will be appointed by the Secretary to fill a vacancy occurring prior to the expiration term for which that member’s predecessor was appointed. The terms of office for the other members of the Board appointed by the Secretary shall be three (3) years. Board members can serve a maximum of two consecutive full three-year terms. Board members are not considered Federal government employees by virtue of their service as a member of the Board and will receive no compensation from the Federal government for their participation in Board activities. Members participating in Board meetings and events may be paid actual travel expenses and per diem by the Corporation when away from their usual places of residence. Individuals who want to be considered for appointment to the Board should submit the following information by the Wednesday, December 11, 2019 deadline to the address listed in the ADDRESSES section above: 1. Name, title, and personal resume of the individual requesting consideration, including address, email address and phone number. 2. A brief statement of why the person should be considered for appointment to the Board. This statement should also address the individual’s relevant international travel and tourism PO 00000 Frm 00006 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 marketing experience and audit committee financial expertise, if any, and indicate clearly the sector or sectors enumerated above in which the individual has the requisite expertise and experience. Individuals who have the requisite expertise and experience in more than one sector can be appointed for only one of those sectors. Appointments of members to the Board will be made by the Secretary of Commerce. 3. An affirmative statement that the applicant is a U.S. citizen, is not a federally-registered lobbyist and further, is not required to register as a foreign agent under the Foreign Agents Registration Act of 1938, as amended. 4. If applicable, a statement acknowledging that the applicant is an audit committee financial expert as defined by the Securities and Exchange Commission (in accordance with 15 U.S.C. 7265). Dated: November 16, 2019. Julie Heizer, Deputy Director, National Travel and Tourism Office. [FR Doc. 2019–26012 Filed 11–29–19; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510–DR–P DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration [RTID 0648–XR015] Notice of Availability of Draft Environmental Assessment on the Effects of Issuing an Incidental Take Permit No. 23148 National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS), National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), Commerce. ACTION: Notice; availability of a Draft Environmental Assessment; request for comments. AGENCY: NMFS announces the availability of the Draft Environmental Assessment (EA) on the effects of issuing an Incidental Take Permit (ITP) (No. 23148) to Exelon Generating Company, LLC, pursuant to the Endangered Species Act (ESA) of 1973, as amended, for the incidental take of shortnose (Acipenser brevirostrum) and Atlantic (Acipenser oxyrinchus) sturgeon associated with the otherwise lawful operation of the Eddystone Generating Station in Eddystone, PA. The facility is requesting the permit be issued for a duration of 10 years. NMFS is requesting comment on the draft EA. DATES: Written comments must be received at the appropriate address or SUMMARY: E:\FR\FM\02DEN1.SGM 02DEN1 jbell on DSKJLSW7X2PROD with NOTICES Federal Register / Vol. 84, No. 231 / Monday, December 2, 2019 / Notices fax number (see ADDRESSES) on or before January 2, 2020. ADDRESSES: The EA is available for download and review at https:// www.fisheries.noaa.gov/action/ incidental-take-permit-eddystonegenerating-station under the section heading Supporting Materials. The application and conservation plan are also available upon written request or by appointment in the following office: Endangered Species Conservation Division, Office of Protected Resources, NMFS, 1315 East-West Highway, Room 13631, Silver Spring, MD 20910; phone (301) 427–8402; fax (301) 713–4060. You may submit comments, identified by NOAA–NMFS–2019–0076, by any of the following methods: • Electronic Submissions: Submit all electronic public comments via the Federal eRulemaking Portal. Go to www.regulations.gov/ #!docketDetail;D=NOAA-NMFS-20190076 click the ‘‘Comment Now’’ icon, complete the required fields, and enter or attach your comments. • Fax: (301) 713–4060; Attn: Celeste Stout. • Mail: Submit written comments to the Endangered Species Conservation Division, Office of Protected Resources, NMFS, 1315 East-West Highway, Room 13631, Silver Spring, MD 20910; Attn: Celeste Stout. Instructions: You must submit comments by one of the above methods to ensure that we receive, document, and consider them. Comments sent by any other method, to any other address or individual, or received after the end of the comment period may not be considered. All comments received are a part of the public record and will generally be posted for public viewing on http://www.regulations.gov without change. All personal identifying information (e.g., name, address, etc.) confidential business information, or otherwise sensitive information submitted voluntarily by the sender will be publicly accessible. We will accept anonymous comments (enter ‘‘N/A’’ in the required fields if you wish to remain anonymous). FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Celeste Stout, Phone: (301) 427–8436 or Email: celeste.stout@noaa.gov. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Publication of this notice begins the official public comment period for this draft EA. Per the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA), the purpose of the draft EA is to evaluate the potential direct, indirect, and cumulative impacts caused by the issuance of Permit No. 23148 to Exelon Generating Company, LLC, for the VerDate Sep<11>2014 17:10 Nov 29, 2019 Jkt 250001 incidental take of shortnose (Acipenser brevirostrum) and Atlantic (Acipenser oxyrinchus) sturgeon. All comments received will become part of the public record and will be available for review. Section 9 of the ESA and Federal regulations prohibit the ‘taking’ of a species listed as endangered or threatened. The ESA defines ‘‘take’’ to mean harass, harm, pursue, hunt, shoot, wound, kill, trap, capture, or collect, or to attempt to engage in any such conduct. NMFS may issue permits, under limited circumstances to take listed species incidental to, and not the purpose of, otherwise lawful activities. Section 10(a)(1)(B) of the ESA provides a mechanism for authorizing incidental take of listed species. NMFS regulations governing permits for threatened and endangered species are promulgated at 50 CFR 222.307. Background Exelon Generating Company, LLC, owns Eddystone Generating Station (the facility), a natural gas/fuel oil-fired electric power generating facility that operates as a peaking plant, (i.e., typically running at higher levels of generation capacity during the summer and winter periods). The facility is located at 1 Industrial Highway, Eddystone, PA 19022. The facility presently consists of two natural gas/ fuel oil-fired electric generating units that are steam-electric generators. Cooling water for each unit is withdrawn from the Delaware River through a cooling water intake structure (CWIS), which is located along the west shore of the River, directly in front of the facility. The operation of the CWIS is the primary aspect of the facility operations under consideration for this ITP due to the potential impacts to ESAlisted sturgeon. Exelon conducted entrainment sampling at the facility in 2005–2006, 2016, and 2017. One Atlantic sturgeon yolk-sac larva was collected in May 2017. Thus, Exelon determined it was necessary to apply for an ITP in accordance with the requirements under Section 10(a)(1)(B) of the ESA. NMFS received a draft permit application from Exelon on June 28, 2018. Based on our review of the draft application, we requested further information and clarification. On December 21, 2018, Exelon submitted an application. Based on review of the updated application, NMFS and Exelon held further discussions regarding what needed to be incorporated in the Conservation Plan. On June 21, 2019, Exelon submitted a revised application and Conservation plan. This application was considered complete and on July PO 00000 Frm 00007 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 65971 16, 2019, NMFS published a notice of receipt of the Exelon application for the Eddystone facility in the Federal Register (84 FR 33924). The comment period ended on August 15, 2019. No comments were received. Conservation Plan Section 10 of the ESA specifies that no permit may be issued unless an applicant submits an adequate conservation plan. The conservation plan prepared by Exelon Generation Company, LLC, describes measures to monitor, minimize and mitigate the impacts of incidental takes of ESA-listed shortnose and Atlantic sturgeon. To avoid and minimize take of sturgeon, Exelon will only operate Eddystone’s circulating water pumps (CWPs): (1) When the station is generating electricity; and (2) for incidental maintenance or testing (generally once per month) (referred to collectively as ‘‘Essential Station Operations’’); or as required by a governmental agency or other entity with jurisdiction to require operations. Depending on station generation and ambient water temperatures, Exelon will also limit operations to one CWP per unit when possible. In addition, Exelon will rely on the river water pumps (RWPs) to provide cooling water for other critical station operations outside of Essential Station Operations. These measures will avoid and minimize the incidental take of sturgeon due to entrainment or impingement by eliminating or reducing water withdrawals at times when such withdrawals are not specifically required for Essential Station Operations or for governmental agencymandated use. Additionally, Exelon will make all reasonable efforts to schedule fuel oil deliveries outside March 15– July 15. Continued monitoring related to the take of shortnose and Atlantic sturgeon will be ongoing and funding will be provided through the facility’s annual operating budget. National Environmental Policy Act This notice is provided pursuant to section 10(c) of the ESA and the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) regulations (40 CFR 1506.6). The draft EA was prepared in accordance with NEPA (42 U.S.C. 4321, et seq.), 40 CFR 1500–1508 and NOAA policy and procedures (NAO 216–6A and the Companion Manual for the NAO 216–6A). Alternatives Considered In preparing the draft EA, NMFS considered the following 2 alternatives for the action. E:\FR\FM\02DEN1.SGM 02DEN1 65972 Federal Register / Vol. 84, No. 231 / Monday, December 2, 2019 / Notices jbell on DSKJLSW7X2PROD with NOTICES Alternative 1: No Action. In accordance with the NOAA Companion Manual (CM) for NAO 216–6A, Section 6.B.i, NMFS is defining the no action alternative as not authorizing the requested incidental take of ESA-listed shortnose (Acipenser brevirostrum) and Atlantic sturgeon (Acipenser oxyrhychus). This is consistent with our statutory obligation under Section 10(a)(1)(B) of the ESA to either: (1) Deny the requested ITP or (2) grant the requested ITP and prescribe mitigation, monitoring, and reporting requirements. Under the no action alternative, NMFS would not issue the ITP, in which case we assume Exelon would continue to operate the Eddystone facility as described in the application without implementing the full suite of specific mitigation measures, monitoring, reporting explained in the Conservation Plan. The CEQ Regulations and the Companion Manual for NAO 216–6A require consideration and analysis of a no action alternative for the purposes of presenting a comparative analysis to the action alternatives. The no action alternative, serves as a baseline against which the impacts of the action alternatives will be compared and contrasted. Alternative 2: Issue Permit as Requested in Application (Proposed Action): Under Alternative 2, an ITP would be issued to exempt Exelon Generating Company, LLC, from the ESA prohibition on taking of shortnose (Acipenser brevirostrum), Atlantic sturgeon (Acipenser oxyrhychus) during the otherwise lawful operation of the Eddystone Generating Station. As required under Section 10(a)(1)(B), the ITP would require Eddystone to operate as described in the proposed Conservation Plan to avoid and minimize take of shortnose and Atlantic sturgeon. Final permit determinations will not be completed until after the end of the 30-day comment period and will fully consider all public comments received during the comment period. NMFS will publish a record of its final action in the Federal Register. Dated: November 26, 2019. Angela Somma, Chief, Endangered Species Conservation Division, Office of Protected Resources, National Marine Fisheries Service. [FR Doc. 2019–26006 Filed 11–29–19; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510–22–P VerDate Sep<11>2014 17:10 Nov 29, 2019 Jkt 250001 BUREAU OF CONSUMER FINANCIAL PROTECTION [Docket No. CFPB–2019–0060] Agency Information Collection Activities: Submission for OMB Review; Comment Request Bureau of Consumer Financial Protection. ACTION: Notice and request for comment. AGENCY: In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (PRA), the Bureau of Consumer Financial Protection (Bureau) is requesting to reinstate the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) approval for the previously-approved information collection titled, ‘‘Application for the Bureau’s Advisory Committees.’’ DATES: Written comments are encouraged and must be received on or before January 2, 2020 to be assured of consideration. ADDRESSES: Comments in response to this notice are to be directed towards OMB and to the attention of the OMB Desk Officer for the Bureau. You may submit comments, identified by the title of the information collection, OMB Control Number (see below), and docket number (see above), by any of the following methods: • Electronic: http:// www.regulations.gov. Follow the instructions for submitting comments. • Email: OIRA_submission@ omb.eop.gov. • Fax: (202) 395–5806. • Mail: Office of Management and Budget, New Executive Office Building, Room 10235, Washington, DC 20503. In general, all comments received will become public records, including any personal information provided. Sensitive personal information, such as account numbers or Social Security numbers, should not be included. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Documentation prepared in support of this information collection request is available at www.reginfo.gov (this link becomes active on the day following publication of this notice). Select ‘‘Information Collection Review,’’ under ‘‘Currently under Review,’’ use the dropdown menu ‘‘Select Agency’’ and select ‘‘Consumer Financial Protection Bureau’’ (recent submissions to OMB will be at the top of the list). The same documentation is also available at http://www.regulations.gov. Requests for additional information should be directed to Darrin King, PRA Officer, at (202) 435–9575, or email: CFPB_PRA@ cfpb.gov. If you require this document SUMMARY: PO 00000 Frm 00008 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 in an alternative electronic format, please contact CFPB_Accessibility@ cfpb.gov. Please do not submit comments to these email boxes. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Title of Collection: Application for the Bureau’s Advisory Committees. OMB Control Number: 3170–0037. Type of Review: Reinstatement with change of a previously-approved OMB Control Number. Affected Public: Individuals. Estimated Number of Respondents: 425. Estimated Total Annual Burden Hours: 491. Abstract: The Director of the Bureau may invite individuals with special expertise to serve on the Bureau’s advisory committees. The selectionrelated material will allow the Bureau to obtain information on the qualifications of individuals nominated to an advisory committee and will aid the Bureau in selecting members for service on an advisory committee. The selectionrelated information will also aid the Bureau in determining the appropriateness of participation in particular matters. The information collected from applicants will aid the Bureau in the exercise of its functions. The feedback collected will allow the Bureau to evaluate and improve its advisory committee program. Information collected will be used for vetting candidates, issue travel orders or provide reimbursement for travel expenses, as applicable. This is a routine request for OMB to renew its approval of the collections of information currently approved under this OMB control number. The Bureau is not proposing any new or revised collections of information pursuant to this request. Request for Comments: The Bureau issued a 60-day Federal Register notice on July 31, 2019, (84 FR 37263, Docket Number: CFPB–2019–0042). No comments were received. Comments were solicited and continue to be invited on: (a) Whether the collection of information is necessary for the proper performance of the functions of the Bureau, including whether the information will have practical utility; (b) The accuracy of the Bureau’s estimate of the burden of the collection of information, including the validity of the methods and the assumptions used; (c) Ways to enhance the quality, utility, and clarity of the information to be collected; and (d) Ways to minimize the burden of the collection of information on respondents, including through the use of automated collection techniques or other forms of information E:\FR\FM\02DEN1.SGM 02DEN1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 84, Number 231 (Monday, December 2, 2019)]
[Notices]
[Pages 65970-65972]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2019-26006]


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DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE

National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration

[RTID 0648-XR015]


Notice of Availability of Draft Environmental Assessment on the 
Effects of Issuing an Incidental Take Permit No. 23148

AGENCY: National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS), National Oceanic and 
Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), Commerce.

ACTION: Notice; availability of a Draft Environmental Assessment; 
request for comments.

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

SUMMARY: NMFS announces the availability of the Draft Environmental 
Assessment (EA) on the effects of issuing an Incidental Take Permit 
(ITP) (No. 23148) to Exelon Generating Company, LLC, pursuant to the 
Endangered Species Act (ESA) of 1973, as amended, for the incidental 
take of shortnose (Acipenser brevirostrum) and Atlantic (Acipenser 
oxyrinchus) sturgeon associated with the otherwise lawful operation of 
the Eddystone Generating Station in Eddystone, PA. The facility is 
requesting the permit be issued for a duration of 10 years. NMFS is 
requesting comment on the draft EA.

DATES: Written comments must be received at the appropriate address or

[[Page 65971]]

fax number (see ADDRESSES) on or before January 2, 2020.

ADDRESSES: The EA is available for download and review at https://www.fisheries.noaa.gov/action/incidental-take-permit-eddystone-generating-station under the section heading Supporting Materials. The 
application and conservation plan are also available upon written 
request or by appointment in the following office: Endangered Species 
Conservation Division, Office of Protected Resources, NMFS, 1315 East-
West Highway, Room 13631, Silver Spring, MD 20910; phone (301) 427-
8402; fax (301) 713-4060.
    You may submit comments, identified by NOAA-NMFS-2019-0076, by any 
of the following methods:
     Electronic Submissions: Submit all electronic public 
comments via the Federal eRulemaking Portal. Go to www.regulations.gov/#!docketDetail;D=NOAA-NMFS-2019-0076 click the ``Comment Now'' icon, 
complete the required fields, and enter or attach your comments.
     Fax: (301) 713-4060; Attn: Celeste Stout.
     Mail: Submit written comments to the Endangered Species 
Conservation Division, Office of Protected Resources, NMFS, 1315 East-
West Highway, Room 13631, Silver Spring, MD 20910; Attn: Celeste Stout.
    Instructions: You must submit comments by one of the above methods 
to ensure that we receive, document, and consider them. Comments sent 
by any other method, to any other address or individual, or received 
after the end of the comment period may not be considered. All comments 
received are a part of the public record and will generally be posted 
for public viewing on http://www.regulations.gov without change. All 
personal identifying information (e.g., name, address, etc.) 
confidential business information, or otherwise sensitive information 
submitted voluntarily by the sender will be publicly accessible. We 
will accept anonymous comments (enter ``N/A'' in the required fields if 
you wish to remain anonymous).

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Celeste Stout, Phone: (301) 427-8436 
or Email: [email protected].

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Publication of this notice begins the 
official public comment period for this draft EA. Per the National 
Environmental Policy Act (NEPA), the purpose of the draft EA is to 
evaluate the potential direct, indirect, and cumulative impacts caused 
by the issuance of Permit No. 23148 to Exelon Generating Company, LLC, 
for the incidental take of shortnose (Acipenser brevirostrum) and 
Atlantic (Acipenser oxyrinchus) sturgeon. All comments received will 
become part of the public record and will be available for review.
    Section 9 of the ESA and Federal regulations prohibit the `taking' 
of a species listed as endangered or threatened. The ESA defines 
``take'' to mean harass, harm, pursue, hunt, shoot, wound, kill, trap, 
capture, or collect, or to attempt to engage in any such conduct. NMFS 
may issue permits, under limited circumstances to take listed species 
incidental to, and not the purpose of, otherwise lawful activities. 
Section 10(a)(1)(B) of the ESA provides a mechanism for authorizing 
incidental take of listed species. NMFS regulations governing permits 
for threatened and endangered species are promulgated at 50 CFR 
222.307.

Background

    Exelon Generating Company, LLC, owns Eddystone Generating Station 
(the facility), a natural gas/fuel oil-fired electric power generating 
facility that operates as a peaking plant, (i.e., typically running at 
higher levels of generation capacity during the summer and winter 
periods). The facility is located at 1 Industrial Highway, Eddystone, 
PA 19022. The facility presently consists of two natural gas/fuel oil-
fired electric generating units that are steam-electric generators. 
Cooling water for each unit is withdrawn from the Delaware River 
through a cooling water intake structure (CWIS), which is located along 
the west shore of the River, directly in front of the facility. The 
operation of the CWIS is the primary aspect of the facility operations 
under consideration for this ITP due to the potential impacts to ESA-
listed sturgeon. Exelon conducted entrainment sampling at the facility 
in 2005-2006, 2016, and 2017. One Atlantic sturgeon yolk-sac larva was 
collected in May 2017. Thus, Exelon determined it was necessary to 
apply for an ITP in accordance with the requirements under Section 
10(a)(1)(B) of the ESA.
    NMFS received a draft permit application from Exelon on June 28, 
2018. Based on our review of the draft application, we requested 
further information and clarification. On December 21, 2018, Exelon 
submitted an application. Based on review of the updated application, 
NMFS and Exelon held further discussions regarding what needed to be 
incorporated in the Conservation Plan. On June 21, 2019, Exelon 
submitted a revised application and Conservation plan. This application 
was considered complete and on July 16, 2019, NMFS published a notice 
of receipt of the Exelon application for the Eddystone facility in the 
Federal Register (84 FR 33924). The comment period ended on August 15, 
2019. No comments were received.

Conservation Plan

    Section 10 of the ESA specifies that no permit may be issued unless 
an applicant submits an adequate conservation plan. The conservation 
plan prepared by Exelon Generation Company, LLC, describes measures to 
monitor, minimize and mitigate the impacts of incidental takes of ESA-
listed shortnose and Atlantic sturgeon. To avoid and minimize take of 
sturgeon, Exelon will only operate Eddystone's circulating water pumps 
(CWPs): (1) When the station is generating electricity; and (2) for 
incidental maintenance or testing (generally once per month) (referred 
to collectively as ``Essential Station Operations''); or as required by 
a governmental agency or other entity with jurisdiction to require 
operations. Depending on station generation and ambient water 
temperatures, Exelon will also limit operations to one CWP per unit 
when possible. In addition, Exelon will rely on the river water pumps 
(RWPs) to provide cooling water for other critical station operations 
outside of Essential Station Operations. These measures will avoid and 
minimize the incidental take of sturgeon due to entrainment or 
impingement by eliminating or reducing water withdrawals at times when 
such withdrawals are not specifically required for Essential Station 
Operations or for governmental agency-mandated use. Additionally, 
Exelon will make all reasonable efforts to schedule fuel oil deliveries 
outside March 15-July 15. Continued monitoring related to the take of 
shortnose and Atlantic sturgeon will be ongoing and funding will be 
provided through the facility's annual operating budget.

National Environmental Policy Act

    This notice is provided pursuant to section 10(c) of the ESA and 
the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) regulations (40 CFR 
1506.6). The draft EA was prepared in accordance with NEPA (42 U.S.C. 
4321, et seq.), 40 CFR 1500-1508 and NOAA policy and procedures (NAO 
216-6A and the Companion Manual for the NAO 216-6A).

Alternatives Considered

    In preparing the draft EA, NMFS considered the following 2 
alternatives for the action.

[[Page 65972]]

    Alternative 1: No Action. In accordance with the NOAA Companion 
Manual (CM) for NAO 216-6A, Section 6.B.i, NMFS is defining the no 
action alternative as not authorizing the requested incidental take of 
ESA-listed shortnose (Acipenser brevirostrum) and Atlantic sturgeon 
(Acipenser oxyrhychus). This is consistent with our statutory 
obligation under Section 10(a)(1)(B) of the ESA to either: (1) Deny the 
requested ITP or (2) grant the requested ITP and prescribe mitigation, 
monitoring, and reporting requirements. Under the no action 
alternative, NMFS would not issue the ITP, in which case we assume 
Exelon would continue to operate the Eddystone facility as described in 
the application without implementing the full suite of specific 
mitigation measures, monitoring, reporting explained in the 
Conservation Plan. The CEQ Regulations and the Companion Manual for NAO 
216-6A require consideration and analysis of a no action alternative 
for the purposes of presenting a comparative analysis to the action 
alternatives. The no action alternative, serves as a baseline against 
which the impacts of the action alternatives will be compared and 
contrasted.
    Alternative 2: Issue Permit as Requested in Application (Proposed 
Action): Under Alternative 2, an ITP would be issued to exempt Exelon 
Generating Company, LLC, from the ESA prohibition on taking of 
shortnose (Acipenser brevirostrum), Atlantic sturgeon (Acipenser 
oxyrhychus) during the otherwise lawful operation of the Eddystone 
Generating Station. As required under Section 10(a)(1)(B), the ITP 
would require Eddystone to operate as described in the proposed 
Conservation Plan to avoid and minimize take of shortnose and Atlantic 
sturgeon.
    Final permit determinations will not be completed until after the 
end of the 30-day comment period and will fully consider all public 
comments received during the comment period. NMFS will publish a record 
of its final action in the Federal Register.

    Dated: November 26, 2019.
Angela Somma,
Chief, Endangered Species Conservation Division, Office of Protected 
Resources, National Marine Fisheries Service.
[FR Doc. 2019-26006 Filed 11-29-19; 8:45 am]
 BILLING CODE 3510-22-P