Notice of Intent To Prepare an Environmental Impact Statement/Overseas Environmental Impact Statement for Navy Atlantic Fleet Training in the Jacksonville Range Complex and Notice of Public Scoping Meetings
Pursuant to Section 102(2)(c) of the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) of 1969, as implemented by the Council on Environmental Quality Regulations (40 CFR Parts 1500-1508), and Executive Order 12114, the Department of the Navy (Navy) announces its intent to prepare an Environmental Impact Statement (EIS)/Overseas EIS to evaluate the potential environmental effects associated with naval training in the Jacksonville (JAX) Range Complex. The Navy proposes to support current and emerging training operations and research, development, testing, and evaluation (RDT&E) activities at the JAX Range Complex by: (1) Maintaining baseline operations at current levels; (2) increasing training operations from current levels as necessary to support the Fleet Readiness Training Plan (FRTP); (3) accommodating mission requirements associated with force structure changes; and (4) implementing enhanced range complex capabilities. The EIS/OEIS study area is the JAX Range Complex which consists of targets and instrumented areas, airspace, surface and subsurface operations areas (OPAREAs), and land range facilities. Together the JAX Range Complex encompasses: 27 square miles of land area; 62,596 nm\2\ of special use airspace (SUA); and 50,090 nm\2\ of sea space. The scope of actions to be analyzed in this EIS/OEIS includes current and proposed future Navy training, and RDT&E activities, within Navy-controlled operating areas, airspace, and ranges. It also includes proposed Navy- funded range capabilities enhancements, including infrastructure improvements that support range complex training and RDT&E activities. Training activities that involve the use of active sonar are conducted in the JAX Range Complex; however, those potential effects are being analyzed in detail in a separate document, the Atlantic Fleet Active Sonar Training EIS/OEIS. This separate sonar EIS/OEIS addresses active sonar use as a whole by the Atlantic Fleet in the eastern Atlantic Ocean (including waters that are part of the JAX Range Complex), and in the Gulf of Mexico. The results of this sonar EIS/OEIS will be incorporated into the JAX Range Complex EIS/OEIS to account for active sonar effects that could occur within the geographic area of the JAX Range Complex. Dates and Addresses: Public scoping meetings will be held to receive oral and written comments on environmental concerns that should be addressed in the EIS/OEIS in the following cities: Charleston, South Carolina; Beaufort, South Carolina; Savannah, Georgia; and Jacksonville, Florida. Public scoping open houses will be held at the following dates, times, and locations: February 20, 2007, from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. at the Embassy Suites in Charleston, SC; February 21, 2007, from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. at the U.S. Army National Guard Armory in Beaufort, SC; February 22, 2007 from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. at the Coastal Georgia Center in Savannah, GA; and February 23, 2007 from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. at The Sea Turtle Inn, Atlantic Beach in Jacksonville, FL.
Proposed Collection; Comment Request
In compliance with Section 3506(c)(2)(A) of the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, the United States Naval Academy announces the proposed extension of a currently approved public information collection and seeks public comment on the provisions thereof. Comments are invited on: (a) Whether the proposed collection of information is necessary for the proper performance of the functions of the agency, including whether the information shall have practical utility; (b) the accuracy of the agency's estimate of the burden of the proposed information collection; (c) ways to enhance the quality, utility, and clarity of the information to be collected; and (d) ways to minimize the burden of the information collection on respondents, including through the use of automated collection techniques or other forms of information technology.