State University of New York College of Environmental Science and Forestry; Petition for Determination of Nonregulated Status for Blight-Resistant Darling 58 American Chestnut, 51008-51009 [2020-18135]

Download as PDF 51008 Federal Register / Vol. 85, No. 161 / Wednesday, August 19, 2020 / Notices for OMB approval. All comments will also become a matter of public record. Done in Washington, DC, this 13th day of August 2020. Mark Davidson, Acting Administrator, Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service. [FR Doc. 2020–18136 Filed 8–18–20; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3410–34–P DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service [Docket No. APHIS–2020–0030] State University of New York College of Environmental Science and Forestry; Petition for Determination of Nonregulated Status for BlightResistant Darling 58 American Chestnut Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service, USDA. ACTION: Notice. AGENCY: We are advising the public that the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) has received a petition from the State University of New York College of Environmental Science and Forestry (ESF) seeking a determination of nonregulated status for blight-resistant Darling 58 American chestnut (Castanea dentata). The petition has been submitted in accordance with our regulations concerning the introduction of certain genetically engineered organisms. We are making available for public comment the ESF petition and requesting public input regarding potential issues and impacts that APHIS should be considering in our evaluation of the petition. DATES: We will consider all comments that we receive on or before October 19, 2020. ADDRESSES: You may submit comments by either of the following methods: • Federal eRulemaking Portal: Go to http://www.regulations.gov/ #!docketDetail;D=APHIS-2020-0030. • Postal Mail/Commercial Delivery: Send your comment to Docket No. APHIS–2020–0030, Regulatory Analysis and Development, PPD, APHIS, Station 3A–03.8, 4700 River Road Unit 118, Riverdale, MD 20737–1238. The petition and any comments we receive on this docket may be viewed at http://www.regulations.gov/ #!docketDetail;D=APHIS-2020-0030 or in our reading room, which is located in room 1141 of the USDA South Building, 14th Street and Independence Avenue jbell on DSKJLSW7X2PROD with NOTICES SUMMARY: VerDate Sep<11>2014 16:34 Aug 18, 2020 Jkt 250001 SW, Washington, DC. Normal reading room hours are 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Monday through Friday, except holidays. To be sure someone is there to help you, please call (202) 799–7039 before coming. The petition is also available on the APHIS website at: https:// www.aphis.usda.gov/aphis/ourfocus/ biotechnology/permits-notificationspetitions/petitions/petition-status under APHIS petition 19–309–01p. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Ms. Cindy Eck, Biotechnology Regulatory Services, APHIS, 4700 River Road Unit 147, Riverdale, MD 20737–1236; (301) 851–3892, email: cynthia.a.eck@ usda.gov. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Under the authority of the plant pest provisions of the Plant Protection Act (7 U.S.C. 7701 et seq.), the regulations in 7 CFR part 340, ‘‘Introduction of Organisms and Products Altered or Produced Through Genetic Engineering Which Are Plant Pests or Which There Is Reason to Believe Are Plant Pests,’’ regulate, among other things, the introduction (importation, interstate movement, or release into the environment) of organisms and products altered or produced through genetic engineering that are plant pests or that there is reason to believe are plant pests. Such organisms and plants developed using genetic engineering are considered ‘‘regulated articles.’’ The regulations in § 340.6(a) provide that any person may submit a petition to the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) seeking a determination that an article should not be regulated under 7 CFR part 340. Paragraphs (b) and (c) of § 340.6 describe the form that a petition for a determination of nonregulated status must take and the information that must be included in the petition. APHIS has received a petition (APHIS Petition Number 19–309–01p) from the State University of New York College of Environmental Science and Forestry (ESF), seeking a determination of nonregulated status for Darling 58 American chestnut (Castanea dentata). The ESF petition states that Darling 58 American chestnut has been genetically engineered for fungal resistance to chestnut blight caused by Cryphonectria parasitica and is unlikely to pose a plant pest risk and, therefore, should not be a regulated article under APHIS’ regulations in 7 CFR part 340. As described in the petition, resistance to this exotic pathogen in Darling 58 American chestnuts was enhanced by adding a gene for an enzyme called oxalate oxidase (OxO). PO 00000 Frm 00002 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 This enzyme has no direct fungicidal properties, but rather detoxifies oxalic acid (oxalate) produced by the fungus, preventing the acid from killing the chestnut’s tissues, which can lead to lethal cankers on the tree. In the presence of OxO, the damage caused by the oxalate is significantly restricted, resulting in superficial cankers. For this reason, the tree can coexist with the fungus in a manner similar to Asian chestnut species in the fungus’ natural range. Data were gathered on multiple parameters and used by the applicant to evaluate agronomic characteristics and product performance. These and other data are used by APHIS to determine if the new variety poses a plant pest risk. Paragraph (d) of § 340.6 provides that APHIS will publish a notice in the Federal Register providing 60 days for public comment for petitions for a determination of nonregulated status. On March 6, 2012, we published in the Federal Register (77 FR 13258–13260, Docket No. APHIS–2011–0129) a notice 1 describing our process for soliciting public comment when considering petitions for determinations of nonregulated status for organisms developed using genetic engineering. In that notice, we indicated that APHIS would accept written comments regarding a petition once APHIS deemed it complete. In accordance with § 340.6(d) of the regulations and our process for soliciting public input when considering petitions for determinations of nonregulated status for organisms developed using genetic engineering, we are publishing this notice to inform the public that APHIS will accept written comments regarding the petition for a determination of nonregulated status from interested or affected persons for a period of 60 days from the date of this notice. The petition is available for public review and comment, and copies are available as indicated under ADDRESSES and FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT above. We are interested in receiving comments regarding potential environmental and interrelated economic issues and impacts that APHIS may determine should be considered in our evaluation of the petition. We are particularly interested in receiving comments regarding biological, cultural, or ecological issues, and we encourage the submission of scientific data, studies, or research to support your comments. 1 To view the notice, go to http:// www.regulations.gov/#!docketDetail;D=APHIS2011-0129. E:\FR\FM\19AUN1.SGM 19AUN1 Federal Register / Vol. 85, No. 161 / Wednesday, August 19, 2020 / Notices After the comment period closes, APHIS will review all written comments received during the comment period and any other relevant information. Any substantive issues identified by APHIS based on our review of the petition and our evaluation and analysis of comments will be considered in the development of our decision-making documents. As part of our decisionmaking process regarding an organism’s regulatory status, APHIS prepares a plant pest risk assessment to assess its plant pest risk and the appropriate environmental documentation—either an environmental assessment (EA) or an environmental impact statement (EIS)— in accordance with the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA), to provide the Agency with a review and analysis of any potential environmental impacts associated with the petition request. For petitions for which APHIS prepares an EA, APHIS will follow our published process for soliciting public comment (see footnote 1) and publish a separate notice in the Federal Register announcing the availability of APHIS’ EA and plant pest risk assessment. Should APHIS determine that an EIS is necessary, APHIS will complete the NEPA EIS process in accordance with Council on Environmental Quality regulations (40 CFR part 1500–1508) and APHIS’ NEPA implementing regulations (7 CFR part 372). Authority: 7 U.S.C. 7701–7772 and 7781– 7786; 31 U.S.C. 9701; 7 CFR 2.22, 2.80, and 371.3. Done in Washington, DC, this 13th day of August 2020. Mark Davidson, Acting Administrator, Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service. [FR Doc. 2020–18135 Filed 8–18–20; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3410–34–P DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE Forest Service Saguache—Upper Rio Grande Resource Advisory Committee; Meeting Forest Service, USDA. Notice of meeting. AGENCY: ACTION: The Saguache—Upper Rio Grande Resource Advisory Committee (RAC) will hold a virtual meeting. 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 jbell on DSKJLSW7X2PROD with NOTICES SUMMARY: VerDate Sep<11>2014 16:34 Aug 18, 2020 Jkt 250001 provide advice and recommendations to the Forest Service concerning projects and funding consistent with the Act. RAC information can be found at the following website: https:// www.fs.usda.gov/main/riogrande/ workingtogether/advisorycommittees. DATES: The meeting will be held on Tuesday, September 15, 2020 at 9:00 a.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. The meeting will be held with virtual attendance only. For virtual meeting information, please see the website listed under Summary. 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 Rio Grande National Forest Headquarters. Please call ahead to facilitate entry into the building. ADDRESSES: Goodland, RAC Coordinator, Rio Grande National Forest Headquarters, 1803 West Highway 160, Monte Vista, Colorado 81144; by email to gregg.goodland@usda.gov, 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. Cikena Reid, USDA Committee Management Officer. [FR Doc. 2020–18091 Filed 8–18–20; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3411–15–P DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE Forest Service Information Collection; Significant Cave Nomination Forest Service, USDA. Notice; request for comment. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: AGENCY: Gregg Goodland, RAC Coordinator, by phone at 719–588–7045 or via email at gregg.goodland@usda.gov. 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: 1. Review RAC funding, roles, responsibilities, and operating guidelines; 2. Allow public input on project proposals; 3. Allow time for project proposal presentations; 4. Discuss, recommend, and approve new Title II projects; and 5. Discuss possible future meetings and next steps. 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 Wednesday, September 9, 2020, 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 Gregg ACTION: PO 00000 Frm 00003 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 51009 In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, the Forest Service is seeking comments from all interested individuals and organizations on a new information collection, Significant Cave Nominations under the Federal Cave Resources Protection Act (FCRPA). DATES: Comments must be received in writing on or before October 19, 2020 to be assured of consideration. Comments received after that date will be considered to the extent practicable. ADDRESSES: Written comments concerning this notice may be submitted via mail to Minerals and Geology Management, Attn: Significant Cave Nomination, 1400 Independence Avenue, Mail Stop 1126, Washington, DC 20250. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Cheryl Nabahe, Minerals and Geology Management, 202–578–2680, by email at cheryl.nabahe@usda.gov. Individuals who use telecommunication devices for the deaf (TDD) may call the Federal Relay Service (FRS) at 1–800–877–8339 between 8 a.m. and 8 p.m., Eastern Time, Monday through Friday. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Title: Significant Cave Nomination. OMB Number: 0596-New. Expiration Date of Approval: Not applicable, new request. SUMMARY: E:\FR\FM\19AUN1.SGM 19AUN1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 85, Number 161 (Wednesday, August 19, 2020)]
[Notices]
[Pages 51008-51009]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2020-18135]


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DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE

Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service

[Docket No. APHIS-2020-0030]


State University of New York College of Environmental Science and 
Forestry; Petition for Determination of Nonregulated Status for Blight-
Resistant Darling 58 American Chestnut

AGENCY: Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service, USDA.

ACTION: Notice.

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

SUMMARY: We are advising the public that the Animal and Plant Health 
Inspection Service (APHIS) has received a petition from the State 
University of New York College of Environmental Science and Forestry 
(ESF) seeking a determination of nonregulated status for blight-
resistant Darling 58 American chestnut (Castanea dentata). The petition 
has been submitted in accordance with our regulations concerning the 
introduction of certain genetically engineered organisms. We are making 
available for public comment the ESF petition and requesting public 
input regarding potential issues and impacts that APHIS should be 
considering in our evaluation of the petition.

DATES: We will consider all comments that we receive on or before 
October 19, 2020.

ADDRESSES: You may submit comments by either of the following methods:
     Federal eRulemaking Portal: Go to http://www.regulations.gov/#!docketDetail;D=APHIS-2020-0030.
     Postal Mail/Commercial Delivery: Send your comment to 
Docket No. APHIS-2020-0030, Regulatory Analysis and Development, PPD, 
APHIS, Station 3A-03.8, 4700 River Road Unit 118, Riverdale, MD 20737-
1238.
    The petition and any comments we receive on this docket may be 
viewed at http://www.regulations.gov/#!docketDetail;D=APHIS-2020-0030 
or in our reading room, which is located in room 1141 of the USDA South 
Building, 14th Street and Independence Avenue SW, Washington, DC. 
Normal reading room hours are 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Monday through 
Friday, except holidays. To be sure someone is there to help you, 
please call (202) 799-7039 before coming.
    The petition is also available on the APHIS website at: https://www.aphis.usda.gov/aphis/ourfocus/biotechnology/permits-notifications-petitions/petitions/petition-status under APHIS petition 19-309-01p.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Ms. Cindy Eck, Biotechnology 
Regulatory Services, APHIS, 4700 River Road Unit 147, Riverdale, MD 
20737-1236; (301) 851-3892, email: [email protected].

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: 
    Under the authority of the plant pest provisions of the Plant 
Protection Act (7 U.S.C. 7701 et seq.), the regulations in 7 CFR part 
340, ``Introduction of Organisms and Products Altered or Produced 
Through Genetic Engineering Which Are Plant Pests or Which There Is 
Reason to Believe Are Plant Pests,'' regulate, among other things, the 
introduction (importation, interstate movement, or release into the 
environment) of organisms and products altered or produced through 
genetic engineering that are plant pests or that there is reason to 
believe are plant pests. Such organisms and plants developed using 
genetic engineering are considered ``regulated articles.''
    The regulations in Sec.  340.6(a) provide that any person may 
submit a petition to the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service 
(APHIS) seeking a determination that an article should not be regulated 
under 7 CFR part 340. Paragraphs (b) and (c) of Sec.  340.6 describe 
the form that a petition for a determination of nonregulated status 
must take and the information that must be included in the petition.
    APHIS has received a petition (APHIS Petition Number 19-309-01p) 
from the State University of New York College of Environmental Science 
and Forestry (ESF), seeking a determination of nonregulated status for 
Darling 58 American chestnut (Castanea dentata). The ESF petition 
states that Darling 58 American chestnut has been genetically 
engineered for fungal resistance to chestnut blight caused by 
Cryphonectria parasitica and is unlikely to pose a plant pest risk and, 
therefore, should not be a regulated article under APHIS' regulations 
in 7 CFR part 340.
    As described in the petition, resistance to this exotic pathogen in 
Darling 58 American chestnuts was enhanced by adding a gene for an 
enzyme called oxalate oxidase (OxO). This enzyme has no direct 
fungicidal properties, but rather detoxifies oxalic acid (oxalate) 
produced by the fungus, preventing the acid from killing the chestnut's 
tissues, which can lead to lethal cankers on the tree. In the presence 
of OxO, the damage caused by the oxalate is significantly restricted, 
resulting in superficial cankers. For this reason, the tree can coexist 
with the fungus in a manner similar to Asian chestnut species in the 
fungus' natural range.
    Data were gathered on multiple parameters and used by the applicant 
to evaluate agronomic characteristics and product performance. These 
and other data are used by APHIS to determine if the new variety poses 
a plant pest risk.
    Paragraph (d) of Sec.  340.6 provides that APHIS will publish a 
notice in the Federal Register providing 60 days for public comment for 
petitions for a determination of nonregulated status. On March 6, 2012, 
we published in the Federal Register (77 FR 13258-13260, Docket No. 
APHIS-2011-0129) a notice \1\ describing our process for soliciting 
public comment when considering petitions for determinations of 
nonregulated status for organisms developed using genetic engineering. 
In that notice, we indicated that APHIS would accept written comments 
regarding a petition once APHIS deemed it complete.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \1\ To view the notice, go to http://www.regulations.gov/#!docketDetail;D=APHIS-2011-0129.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    In accordance with Sec.  340.6(d) of the regulations and our 
process for soliciting public input when considering petitions for 
determinations of nonregulated status for organisms developed using 
genetic engineering, we are publishing this notice to inform the public 
that APHIS will accept written comments regarding the petition for a 
determination of nonregulated status from interested or affected 
persons for a period of 60 days from the date of this notice. The 
petition is available for public review and comment, and copies are 
available as indicated under ADDRESSES and FOR FURTHER INFORMATION 
CONTACT above. We are interested in receiving comments regarding 
potential environmental and interrelated economic issues and impacts 
that APHIS may determine should be considered in our evaluation of the 
petition. We are particularly interested in receiving comments 
regarding biological, cultural, or ecological issues, and we encourage 
the submission of scientific data, studies, or research to support your 
comments.

[[Page 51009]]

    After the comment period closes, APHIS will review all written 
comments received during the comment period and any other relevant 
information. Any substantive issues identified by APHIS based on our 
review of the petition and our evaluation and analysis of comments will 
be considered in the development of our decision-making documents. As 
part of our decision-making process regarding an organism's regulatory 
status, APHIS prepares a plant pest risk assessment to assess its plant 
pest risk and the appropriate environmental documentation--either an 
environmental assessment (EA) or an environmental impact statement 
(EIS)--in accordance with the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA), 
to provide the Agency with a review and analysis of any potential 
environmental impacts associated with the petition request. For 
petitions for which APHIS prepares an EA, APHIS will follow our 
published process for soliciting public comment (see footnote 1) and 
publish a separate notice in the Federal Register announcing the 
availability of APHIS' EA and plant pest risk assessment.
    Should APHIS determine that an EIS is necessary, APHIS will 
complete the NEPA EIS process in accordance with Council on 
Environmental Quality regulations (40 CFR part 1500-1508) and APHIS' 
NEPA implementing regulations (7 CFR part 372).

    Authority: 7 U.S.C. 7701-7772 and 7781-7786; 31 U.S.C. 9701; 7 
CFR 2.22, 2.80, and 371.3.

    Done in Washington, DC, this 13th day of August 2020.
Mark Davidson,
Acting Administrator, Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service.
[FR Doc. 2020-18135 Filed 8-18-20; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 3410-34-P