Cape Wind Energy Project
The MMS is announcing the availability of a final EIS for the proposed Cape Wind Energy Project. Cape Wind Associates, LLC (CWA) has requested a lease, easement or right-of-way, pursuant to section 8(p) of the Outer Continental Shelf Lands Act (OCSLA) (43 U.S.C. 1337) as amended, and proposes to construct and operate a wind energy facility on the OCS off Massachusetts, in Nantucket Sound. The final EIS is intended to inform the public of the proposed action and reasonable alternatives, including the ``no action'' alternative; analyze the direct, indirect, and cumulative environmental effects of the proposed action and each of the reasonable alternatives; address public comment received on the draft EIS that was released in January 2008; and provide information to support decision-making.
Geological and Geophysical Exploration (G&G) on the Atlantic Outer Continental Shelf (OCS)
Pursuant to the regulations implementing the procedural provisions of the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA), MMS is announcing its intent to prepare a PEIS to evaluate potential environmental effects of multiple G&G activities on the Atlantic OCS. This NOI initiates the scoping process for this PEIS and also seeks interest from other Federal agencies, and State, tribal, and local governments to consider becoming cooperating agencies in the preparation of the EIS. Through the scoping process, Federal, state, and local government agencies and other interested parties have the opportunity to aid MMS in determining the significant issues and alternatives for analysis in the PEIS. Comments received in response to the NOI will assist MMS in developing the scope of the PEIS. This early planning and consultation step is important to ensure that all interests and concerns are communicated to MMS as it develops this PEIS and ultimately for future decisions regarding G&G operations under MMS regulatory authority. In order to assist MMS in developing the scope of G&G activities to be covered within the PEIS, we are also using this NOI to solicit information from industry on any potential interest for future G&G activities on the Atlantic OCS, including seismic surveys (high- resolution surveys as well as various types of seismic exploration and development surveys), side-scan sonar surveys, all types of electromagnetic surveys, geological and geochemical sampling, and remote sensing (including gravity and magnetic surveys) and the geographic areas of these activities. The MMS will specifically use this information to develop the scope of the PEIS scenario and its proposed action area. If details on activities, desired geographic locations, or other relevant information are not provided to MMS through this Call for Interest, then this information may not be included in the PEIS scenario and may require additional NEPA analysis if proposed at a later date. With this NOI, MMS notes that this PEIS is dependent upon availability of funding. MMS welcomes participation from outside sources consistent with appropriate authorities and mechanisms to award a contract to conduct the essential analyses and prepare the PEIS. The MMS would maintain sole oversight over selection and management of contractors and would maintain full authority over the content of the PEIS, protected resources analyses, and final decisions. Outside sources that are considering participating in this PEIS process should submit an expression of interest, along with the requested information on potential activities and geographic scope, to the MMS, Gulf of Mexico OCS Region's Regional Supervisor for Leasing and Environment (see Comments section for contact information). If a PEIS is funded and started in early 2009, MMS estimates completion of the PEIS by late 2010. Without funding, completion of the PEIS would be uncertain.
Request for Comments on the Draft Proposed 5-Year Outer Continental Shelf (OCS) Oil and Gas Leasing Program for 2010-2015 and Notice of Intent To Prepare an Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) for the Proposed 5-Year Program
The Minerals Management Service (MMS) requests comments on the Draft Proposed 5-year OCS Oil and Gas Leasing Program for 2010-2015 (DPP). This draft proposal is for a new oil and gas program to succeed the current program that is currently set to expire on June 30, 2012, and forms the basis for conducting the studies and analyses the Secretary will consider in making future decisions on what areas of the OCS to include in the program. Section 18 of the OCS Lands Act (43 U.S.C. 1344) specifies a multi- step process of consultation and analysis that must be completed before the Secretary of the Interior may approve a new 5-year program. The required steps following this notice include the development of a proposed program, a proposed final program, and Secretarial approval. Pursuant to the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA), the MMS also will prepare an EIS for the new 5-year program.
Outer Continental Shelf (OCS) Central Planning Area (CPA) Gulf of Mexico (GOM) Oil and Gas Lease Sale 208
On Wednesday, March 18, 2009, the MMS will open and publicly announce bids received for blocks offered in CPA Oil and Gas Lease Sale 208, pursuant to the OCS Lands Act (43 U.S.C. 1331-1356, as amended) and the regulations issued thereunder (30 CFR Part 256). The Final Notice of Sale 208 Package (Final NOS 208 Package) contains information essential to bidders, and bidders are charged with the knowledge of the documents contained in the Package.
Agency Information Collection Activities: Proposed Collection, Comment Request
To comply with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (PRA), we are notifying the public that we have submitted to the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) an information collection request (ICR) to renew approval of the paperwork requirements under the Chief Financial Officers Act of 1990 (CFO). This notice also provides the public a second opportunity to comment on the paperwork burden of the regulatory requirements. This ICR is titled ``Accounts Receivable Confirmations.''
Outer Continental Shelf (OCS) Gulf of Mexico OCS Region, Mid-Atlantic Proposed Oil and Gas Lease Sale 220
The Minerals Management Service hereby gives notice that it is extending the public comment period for the Proposed Oil and Gas Lease Sale 220 Call for Information and Interest/Nominations (Call) and Notice of Intent (NOI) to prepare an Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) which was published in the Federal Register on November 13, 2008, (Volume 73, No. 220) for an additional 15 days. Please see the above notice for more detailed information. Due to the holidays, the MMS will extend the comment period from December 29, 2008, to January 13, 2009.