Rural Utilities Service September 15, 2010 – Federal Register Recent Federal Regulation Documents

Bemidji to Grand Rapids Minnesota 230 kV Transmission Line Project
Document Number: 2010-22966
Type: Notice
Date: 2010-09-15
Agency: Department of Agriculture, Rural Utilities Service
The Rural Utilities Service (RUS), U.S. Forest Service Chippewa National Forest (CNF), U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) and Leech Lake Band of Ojibwe Division of Resource Management (LLBO) have issued a Final Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) for the proposed Bemidji to Grand Rapids, Minnesota 230 kV Transmission Line Project (``Project'') in Minnesota. The Final EIS was prepared pursuant to the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969 (NEPA) (U.S.C. 4231 et seq.) in accordance with the Council on Environmental Quality's (CEQ) regulations for implementing the procedural provisions of NEPA (40 CFR 1500-1508), and RUS regulations (7 CFR 1794). To minimize duplication of effort pursuant to 40 CFR 1506.2, RUS prepared the Final EIS jointly with the Minnesota Department of Commerce, Office of Energy Security (OES) in compliance with federal responsibilities under NEPA and other federal statutes and regulations, and state responsibilities under the Minnesota Environmental Policy Act and the Minnesota Power Plant Siting Act. RUS is the lead federal agency as defined at 40 CFR 1501.5, and CNF and USACE are cooperating agencies. LLBO accepted an invitation to participate as a cooperating agency. The purpose of the Final EIS is to evaluate the potential environmental impacts of and alternatives to the application of Minnkota Power Cooperative, Inc. for RUS financing to construct a 230 kilovolt (kV) transmission line between the Wilton Substation near Bemidji, Minnesota and the Boswell Substation near Grand Rapids, Minnesota, which will cross portions of Beltrami, Hubbard, Itasca, and Cass counties. Minnkota also proposes to modify the Wilton and Boswell substations and construct a new 115 kV breaker station at Nary Junction, Minnesota. In addition, Minnkota proposes to upgrade an existing or construct a new substation in the Cass Lake, Minnesota area, depending on the route alternative selected for the Project. The Project is being jointly developed by Minnkota, Otter Tail Power Company, and Minnesota Power.