ESA and NEPA notices – 2014

 

By date

Wednesday, Dec. 31

FWS issues positive 90-day findings on two petitions -- to list the monarch butterfly and to delist the coastal California gnatcatcher |    Monarch docket   |  Gnatcatcher docket

FWS receives application from Pauma Estates, Inc. for a 5- year incidental take permit for the endangered arroyo toad; low-effect HCP proposed | We have asked FWS to send us the proposed HCP and to make all such documents available on its website in future

Public meeting of the Wildlife and Hunting Heritage Conservation Council set for Jan. 13 and 14 in D.C. If you want to go, let 'em know now. Agenda includes

NMFS issues Incidental Harassment Authorization to the Northeast Gateway® Energy Bridge™, L.P. and Algonquin Gas Transmission, L.L.C. to take, by harassment, small numbers of 14 species of marine mammals incidental to operating, maintaining, and repairing a liquefied natural gas port and the Algonquin Pipeline Lateral facilities by NEG and Algonquin, in Massachusetts Bay, between Dec. 22, 2014, through Dec. 21, 2015. | Review permits yourself

NMFS receives request from Washington State Department of Transportation Ferries Division for an authorization to take small numbers of nine species of marine mammals, by Level B harassment, incidental to proposed construction activities for Vashon Seismic Retrofit Project on Vashon Islan.

NMFS makes technical corrections to loggerhead sea turtle listing and critical habitat rules.

NMFS corrects sawfish listing rule

DOE releases Determination for Closure )and the basis for closure) of H-Tank Farm at the Savannah River Site | More

FAA releases draft Environmental Assessment for the Houston Spaceport | More here

Gulf Coast Ecosystem Restoration Council issues guidance to Gulf Coast States (Alabama, Florida, Louisiana, Mississippi, and Texas) or the Gulf Coast States' administrative agents and the Gulf Consortium of Florida counties to apply for grants to fund planning activities to develop individual State Expenditure Plans under the Spill Impact Component of the Resources and Ecosystem Sustainability, Tourist Opportunities, and Revived Economies of the Gulf Coast States Act of 2012 | More here

Tuesday, Dec. 30

FWS asks OMB to approve Information Collection Request for wind energy facilities. ("As wind energy production increased, both developers and wildlife agencies recognized the need for a system to evaluate and address the potential
negative impacts of wind energy projects on species of concern. We issued voluntary Land-Based Wind Energy Guidelines in March 2012 to provide a structured, scientific process for addressing wildlife conservation concerns at all stages of land-based wind energy development. The Guidelines also promote effective communication among wind energy developers and Federal, State, tribal, and local conservation agencies. When used in concert with appropriate regulatory tools, the Guidelines are the best practical approach for conserving species of concern. We are asking OMB to renew approval for the information collection requirements in the Guidelines. We are not making any changes to the requirements.")

FWS will conduct an open meeting on January 28, 2015, to identify and discuss preliminary issues concerning the 2015-16 migratory bird hunting regulations.

FERC issues FEIS on applications for license for Pacific Gas and Electric Company’s Upper Drum-Spaulding (FERC No. 2310), Lower Drum (FERC No. 14531), and Deer Creek (FERC No. 14530) Projects and Nevada Irrigation District’s Yuba-Bear Project (FERC No. 2266)

NMFS issues amendment to marine mammal permit (humpback whales) and a number of other marine mammal permits

Monday, Dec. 29

FWS receives recovery permit applications (California)

NMFS publishes its final List of Fisheries for 2015, as required by the Marine Mammal Protection Act. "This rule would not affect species listed as threatened or endangered under the Endangered Species Act or their associated critical habitat. The impacts of numerous fisheries have been analyzed in various biological opinions, and this rule will not affect the conclusions of those opinions."

NMFS’ Office of Protected Resources has received a request from the NMFS Northeast Fisheries Science Center for authorization to take small numbers of marine mammals incidental to conducting fisheries research (12/29/14)

NMFS releases Draft Programmatic Environmental Assessment (DPEA) for Fisheries Research Conducted and Funded by the Northeast Fisheries Science Center

NMFS makes negative 12-month finding on pinto abalone (i.e., "We conclude that the pinto abalone is not currently in danger of extinction throughout all or a significant portion of its range and is not likely to become so within the foreseeable future." also, "[I]ncreased water temperatures associated with climate change may be widespread throughout the U.S. West Coast, though the latest climate report suggests that impacts will be least felt in the Pacific Northwest (Mote et al. 2014). Increased water temperatures could affect the health and range of pinto abalone, particularly at the northern and southern extreme of the species range. However, pinto abalone have a wide temperature tolerance and may be able to adapt to changing temperatures over time, such as by seeking depth refuges." (12/29/14)

NPS is preparing a draft EIS in response to a request from Dare County, North Carolina, for a Special Use Permit for activities related to the protection of North Carolina Highway 12 (Highway 12) in the Buxton area.

EPA receives EIS's for review

BLM's Palm Springs-South Coast Field Office releases DEIS for the Proposed Land Exchange between the BLM and the Agua Caliente Band of Cahuilla Indians | More here

BLM releases proposed Resource Management Plan/final EIS for the Prehistoric Trackways National Monument

Wednesday, Dec. 24

CEQ releases Final Interagency Economic and Environmental Principles and Guidelines for Water and Related Land Resources Implementation Studies | Go here for the document

CEQ publishes revised draft guidance on how NEPA analysis and documentation should address greenhouse gas emissions and the impacts of climate change.

This revised draft guidance:

  • discusses direct, indirect, and cumulative impacts analysis of a proposed action’s reasonably foreseeable emissions and effects;
  • highlights the consideration of reasonable alternatives and points to the need to consider the short-term and long-term effects and benefits in the alternatives analysis and mitigation to lower emissions;
  • recommends that agencies use a reference point to determine when GHG emissions warrant a quantitative analysis taking into account
    available GHG quantification tools and data that are appropriate for proposed agency actions;
  • recommends that an agency select the appropriate level of action for NEPA review at which to assess the effects of GHG emissions and climate change, either at a broad programmatic or landscape-scale level or at a project- or site-specific level, and that the agency set forth a reasoned explanation for its approach;
  • counsels agencies to use the information developed during the NEPA review to consider alternatives that are more resilient to the effects of a changing climate; and
  • advises agencies to use existing information and tools when assessing future proposed action, and provides examples of some existing sources of scientific information.

FERC releases EA on application for an original license for the Pepperell Hydroelectric Project, located on the Nashua River, in the towns of Pepperell and Groton, Middlesex County, Massachusetts

Forest Service releases EIS's

Rio Grande National Forest, located in south central Colorado, is initiating the forest planning process pursuant to the 2012 Forest Planning Rule

NMFS asks for comment on Information Collection Request re: HCPs

Tuesday, Dec. 23

CEQ issues final guidance on conducting Programmatic NEPA reviews | Go here for final guidance | Direct download | Press release

FWS extends comment period to Feb. 4 on proposal to list Pacific Coast DPS of fisher as threatened | Docket

Farm Service Agency, on behalf of the Commodity Credit Corporation, completes Final Supplemental Programmatic EIS examining the potential environmental consequences associated with implementing the changes to the Conservation Reserve Program specified in the Agricultural Act of 2014 | FSPEIS is here

NMFS requests comments on proposal to issue an Authorization to Point Blue Conservation Science to harass, by Level B harassment only, four species of marine mammals, incidental to conducting proposed seabird research activities on Southeast Farallon Island, Año Nuevo Island, and Point Reyes National Seashore in central California from January 2015 through January 2016 (MMPA)

BLM extends public comment period for the Las Vegas and Pahrump Field Offices Draft Resource Management and and Draft EIS until Feb. 6, 2015.

FERC releases EA/FONSI on license application for the multi-development Morrisville Hydroelectric Project, located on the Green River, Elmore Pond Brook, and Lamoille River in Lamoille County, Vermont.

FERC releases EA/FONSI for the Sabine Pass Liquefaction Expansion Project and for the and Cheniere Creole Trail Pipeline Expansion Project (Louisiana)

Monday, Dec. 22

Surface Mining Reclamation and Enforcement Office amends regulations concerning stream buffer zones, stream-channel diversions, excess spoil, and coal mine waste to comply with an order issued by the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia on February 20, 2014, which vacated the stream buffer zone rule published Dec. 12, 2008.

BLM's Pecos District Resource Advisory Council’s Lesser Prairie-Chicken Habitat Preservation Area of Critical Environmental Concern Livestock Grazing Subcommittee will meet Feb. 4, 2o15 in Roswell

Navy to hold meetings on Supplement to the DEIS /Overseas EIS (EIS/OEIS) for the Northwest Training and Testing Study Area.

DOI releases semiannual regulatory agenda

FWS receives endangered species permit applications (panda, et al.)

FERC releases Environmental Assessments

Friday, Dec. 19

FWS: Bexar County and the City of San Antonio have applied to FWS for an incidental take permit (ITP, TE-48571B-0) authorizing take of nine federally listed species in Bexar County and the City of San Antonio. The applicants have completed a draft Habitat Conservation Plan, referred to as the Southern Edwards Plateau (SEP dHCP), as part of the application package.

FWS receives application for an Incidental Take Permit (ITP) and a proposed Habitat Conservation Plan (HCP) from the Town of Orleans, Mass., for public review and comment.

Corps Fort Worth District releases FEIS analyzing potential effects for the implementation of flood risk management elements, ecosystem restoration
features, recreation enhancement features, interior drainage plan improvements, and other proposed projects in and around the Dallas Floodway, in the City of Dallas. | More here

BLM's Vale District Office releases DEIS and Land-Use Plan Amendments (LUPAs) for the Boardman to Hemingway Transmission Line Project

EPA receives EIS's for review

Thursday, Dec. 18

FWS asks for comment on HCP, incidental take application and associated EA for residential development on the 60.7-acre Anderson Tract in Bexar County, Texas (golden-cheeked warbler)

BLM, FS, FERC: Jordan Cove Energy and Pacific Connector Pipeline (PCGP) Projects Draft EIS released

Recommendations of the Presidential Task Force on Combating Illegal, Unreported and Unregulated Fishing and Seafood Fraud | More here   (pub. 12/18)

State Department invites experts in relevant fields of expertise to participate in the U.S. Government review of the draft World Oceans Assessment

Wednesday, Dec. 17

NMFS proposes to list six species under the ESA: dusky sea snake (Aipysurus fuscus), Banggai cardinalfish (Pterapogon
kauderni), Harrisson’s dogfish (Centrophorus harrissoni), and the corals Cantharellus noumeae, Siderastrea glynni, and Tubastraea floreana. NMFS concludes that Eastern Taiwan Strait Indo-Pacific humpback dolphin is not a distinct population segment and therefore does not warrant listing | Docket will be here

NMFS finds that the Northwest Atlantic and Gulf of Mexico population (abbreviation: NWA) population of the Dusky shark constitutes a DPS but does not warrant listing

FWS receives recovery permit applications (SW willow flycatcher, American burying beetle, more species)

FERC releases EA for the West Side Expansion and Modernization Project, proposed by National Fuel Gas Supply Corporation in the above-referenced docket. National Fuel requests authorization to construct and operate natural gas pipeline facilities in Washington, Allegheny, Beaver, Venango, and Mercer counties, Pennsylvania, to provide incremental delivery of about 175,000 dekatherms per day of natural gas


Tuesday, Dec. 16

NOAA - permits

Endangered Species; File No. 18136 (Scheduled to be published on 12/16/2014 as document 2014-29347)

Endangered Species; File No. 18688 (Scheduled to be published on 12/16/2014 as document 2014-29346)

NMFS is closing fishing for the commercial porbeagle shark quota until further notice. This action is necessary because, as of December 10, 2014, the commercial landings of porbeagle sharks during the 2014 fishing season exceeded the available 2014 adjusted commercial quota and to an extent that makes 2015 commercial quota unavailable.

The Judicial Conference Committee on Rules of Practice and Procedure will hold a two-day meeting. Phoenix AZ, Jan. 8-9, 2015. "The meeting will be open to public observation but not participation."

Monday, Dec. 15

FWS to prepare EIS for proposed HCP/NCCP for Yuba and Sutter counties in California (Yuba-Sutter Regional Conservation Plan). Written comments due by Jan. 29, 2015. Public scoping meeting is on Tuesday, Jan. 6, from 3-5 and 6-8, at the Yuba County Government Center, Wheatland room, 915 8th St, Marysville, CA 95901. " The proposed YSRCP plan area (or permit area) includes approximately 469,271 acres, including 141,644 acres in Yuba County and 327,627 acres in Sutter County. This area includes the Cities of Wheatland, Yuba City, and Live Oak, and the spheres of influence of each jurisdiction."

NPS to assess lands within the original 1974 legislated boundary of Big Cypress National Preserve for wilderness eligibility. A determination of eligibility and subsequent future actions will be announced in the Federal Register upon completion of the assessment.

Friday, Dec. 12

USDA asks for comments on interim rule to amend the existing Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP) regulation,  incorporating programmatic changes as authorized by amendments in the Agricultural Act of 2014 | EQIP

EPA provides notice of its approval of coverage for the continued operation and maintenance of the portion of the Barataria to Alliance Transmission Line and an associated distribution line located in the Bayou aux Carpes CWA Section 404(c) site in Jefferson Parish, Louisiana, under an exception provided in the October 16, 1985, EPA Bayou aux Carpes Final Determination, as amended. This action covers discharges (approximately 1.35 cubic yards) to wetlands of dredged or fill material associated with ongoing activities by Entergy Louisiana, L.L.C. to provide electrical service to residential, commercial, military, industrial, and other facilities in nearby Plaquemines Parish, Louisiana. | Docket

EPA receives EIS's for comment | More here

Forest Service will prepare EIS to document the analysis and disclose environmental impacts of proposed actions needed to continue long-term research on the Fernow Experimental Forest in West Virginia. FS proposes to harvest timber, use prescribed fire, and apply fertilizer to specific areas of the experimental forest. (Correction by FS: "We anticipate completing the draft EIS in April 2015 and the final EIS is expected in June 2015.")

NPS releases White-tailed Deer Management Plan/EIS, Cuyahoga Valley National Park, Ohio | Plan is here

NMFS issues this final rule to amend the regulations implementing the Atlantic Large Whale Take Reduction Plan to modify the start date of the Massachusetts Restricted Area to begin on February 1, 2015, and to expand the Massachusetts Restricted Area by 912 square miles. In addition, this rule will revise the federal lobster regulations to be consistent with the revised start date of the Massachusetts Restricted Area

NMFS lists as endangered the narrow sawfish (Anoxypristis cuspidata), dwarf sawfish (Pristis clavata), largetooth sawfish (collectively Pristis pristis; formerly Pristis pristis, Pristis microdon, and Pristis perotteti), green sawfish (Pristis zijsron), and the non-U.S. distinct population segment (DPS) of smalltooth sawfish (Pristis pectinata) | Sawfish page  | Docket

APHIS releases EA/FONSI for a Biological Control Agent for Asian Citrus Psyllid in the Contiguous United States | EA/FONSI

Thursday, Dec. 11

FWS lists Rufa red knot as threatened | More from ESWR | Just the text, ma'm

FWS releases draft recovery plan for the Santa Rosa Plain: Blennosperma bakeri (Sonoma sunshine); Lasthenia burkei (Burke’s goldfields); Limnanthes vinculans (Sebastopol meadowfoam); Sonoma County Distinct Population Segment of the California Tiger Salamander (Ambystoma californiense) | Plan is here

Nuclear Regulatory Commission issues for public comment its draft regulatory guide (DG), DG-4023, "Aquatic Environmental Studies for Nuclear Power Stations.'' Comments allowed until Feb. 9, 2015. | Guide is here, I think     (FR notice has typically difficult-to-follow instructions for finding the guide on NRC's site, instead of a simple, direct link. Ah, transparency.)

Wednesday, Dec. 10

FWS, California Department of Water Resources TO prepare a joint Environmental Impact Statement/Environmental Impact Report (EIS/EIR) to evaluate impacts regarding construction and operation of the Delta Research Station (DRS) in the San Francisco Bay/Sacramento–San Joaquin Delta Estuary (Bay-Delta), California. The planned DRS would consist of two facilities, a proposed Estuarine Research Station (ERS) and Fish Technology Center (FTC)

NOAA solicits nominations for members of the NOAA Science Advisory Board | NOAA SAB page

Tuesday, Dec. 9

NMFS proposes to designate critical habitat for the Arctic subspecies (Phoca hispida hispida) of the ringed seal (Phoca hispida) | More here (to come) (due to publish 12/9)

FERC to prepare EA for the Salem Lateral Project, proposed by Algonquin Gas Transmission, LLC in the above-referenced docket. Algonquin requests authorization to construct approximately 1.2 miles of pipeline in the city of Salem, Mass.

Forest Service seeks comments from all interested individuals and organizations on the new information collection, Good Neighbor Agreements with
State Cooperators

Maritime Administration issues FONSI for the America’s Marine Highway Program, which designates criteria, eligibility requirements, and information for applicants seeking to establish services on a “short sea” marine highway

NOAA:

Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposals, Submissions, and Approvals:

NMFS has issued an Incidental Harassment Authorization (IHA) to the Partnership for Interdisciplinary Study of Coastal Oceans (PISCO) at the University of California (UC) Santa Cruz for an Incidental Harassment Authorization (IHA) to take marine mammals, by harassment, incidental to rocky intertidal monitoring surveys.

Monday, Dec. 8

FWS releases FEIS for for the Maricopa Sun Solar Complex Multi-Species Habitat Conservation Plan (HCP describes how applicant will "minimize and
mitigate environmental effects associated with the incidental take of five animal species associated with the construction, operation, maintenance, and decommissioning of an up to 700 megawatt photo-voltaic power generating facility." Endangered species are: Blunt-nosed leopard lizard (Gambelia sila), Tipton kangaroo rat (Dipodomys nitratoides nitratoides), and San Joaquin kit fox (Vulpes macrotis mutica). Unlisted species are the
western burrowing owl (Athene cunicularia) and Nelson’s antelope squirrel (Ammospermophilus nelsoni). (FEIS is supposed to be available at www.fws.gov/sacramento)

FHWA issues revised NOI as a correction to advise agencies and the public that a Supplemental Draft Environmental Impact Statement (SDEIS) will be prepared for the South Capitol Street Project (Washington, D.C.). The project proposes to make major changes to the South Capitol Street Corridor from Firth Sterling Avenue SE to Independence Avenue and the Suitland Parkway from Martin Luther King, Jr. Avenue SE to South Capitol Street, including replacing the existing Frederick Douglass Memorial Bridge over the Anacostia River. This notice revises the NOI that was published in the Federal Register on July 28, 2014.

NOAA  - Permits:

Marine Mammals; File No. 15324   PDF  (Permalink)

Marine Mammals; File No. 18523     PDF (Permalink)

Marine Mammals; File No.18727; Corrections    PDF (Permalink)

NRCS to prepare SEIS for the East Locust Creek Watershed Revised Plan, Sullivan County, Missouri, involving the proposed construction of a multi-purpose reservoir

Friday, Dec. 5

EPA receives EIS's for comment

FWS publishes Candidate Notice of Review  (candidate species)

Thursday, Dec. 4

FWS receives ES, marine mammal permit applications

FWS provides list of ES, marine mammal permits it has issued

Department of Commerce will submit to OMB an Information Collection Request (NOAA; Economic Value of Puerto Rico's Coral Reef Ecosystems for Recreation/Tourism Uses). Description: "NOAA and [EPA] have entered a partnership to estimate the market and non-market economic values of Puerto Rico's coral reef ecosystems. Estimates will be made for all ecosystem services for the Guanica Bay Watershed and for recreation-tourism for all of Puerto Rico's coral reef ecosystems. We will conduct surveys of visitors to Puerto Rico and residents of Puerto Rico who use the coral reef ecosystems to estimate the amount and type of use, their spending while undertaking coral reef use activities, the economic value of reef attributes (e.g. water clarity/ visibility, coral abundance and diversity, fish and invertebrate abundance and diversity, and opportunity to see large wildlife) and how economic value changes with changes in reef attributes."

FERC to prepare EA on Lebanon West II Project involving construction, operation, and abandonment of facilities by Dominion Transmission, Inc. in Armstrong, Allegheny, and Beaver Counties, Pennsylvania, and Licking, Fayette, Coshocton, Tuscarawas, Harrison, Carroll, and Columbiana Counties, Ohio.

Wednesday, Dec. 3

FWS: Public teleconference of the Sport Fishing and Boating Partnership Council set for Dec. 19

NPS releases FEIS for the Anacostia Park Wetlands and Resident Canada Goose Management Plan, Anacostia Park, Washington, D.C | FEIS is here

Cape Cod National Seashore Advisory Commission to meet Jan. 12 (shorebird management update included)

Tuesday, Dec. 2

FWS schedules public hearing on Dec. 18 in Sacramento on proposed critical habitat for western yellow-billed cuckoo

FWS receives applications from five Soil and Water Conservation Districts for enhancement of survival (EOS) permits. The permit applications include proposed programmatic candidate conservation agreements with assurances for the greater sage-grouse, addressing conservation activities and ranching operations in Baker, Crook, Deschutes, Grant, Lake, Malheur, and southern Union counties, Oregon | Docs will be here, presumably, when the notice is officially published in the FR

FHWA, Arizona DOT won't prepare an EIS for the proposed improvements or rerouting of US 60 in Pinal and Gila counties, Arizona.

NMFS adopts a final rule to implement Amendment 97 to the Fishery Management Plan for Groundfish of the Gulf of Alaska (FMP). Amendment 97 limits Chinook salmon prohibited species catch (PSC) in Western and Central Gulf of Alaska (GOA) non-pollock trawl catcher/processor (C/P) and catcher vessel (CV) fisheries.

NMFS receives application from the National Ocean Service’s Office of National Marine Sanctuaries Gulf of the Farallones National Marine Sanctuary (GFNMS) for an Incidental Harassment Authorization (IHA) to take marine mammals, by harassment, incidental to rocky intertidal monitoring work and searching for black abalone, components of the Sanctuary Ecosystem Assessment Surveys

Monday, Dec. 1

DOJ lodges Agreed Consent Decree Modification in U.S. and State of Indiana v. The City of Fort Wayne, Indiana (07-445-PPS-APR, N.D. Ind.) (municipal wastewater and sewer system) | Consent decrees

NMFS closes the fisheries for commercial aggregated LCS and hammerhead sharks in the Atlantic region. "This action is necessary because the commercial landings of Atlantic aggregated LCS for the 2014 fishing season have reached 80 percent of the available commercial quota as of November 14, 2014, and the fisheries are quota-linked under current regulations."

Friday, Nov. 28

FWS receives endangered species recovery permit applications

BLM releases EA to determine whether newly identified measures to mitigate potential impacts caused by the proposed SunZia Southwest Transmission Line Project to military operations and readiness activities require the BLM to prepare a supplement to the Final Environmental Impact Statement (EIS), which the BLM published in June 2013 | More information here

BLM releases Carson City District Draft Resource Management Plan and Draft Environmental Impact Statement, NV | More here

BLM will establish the Southwest Oregon RAC, the Northwest Oregon RAC, and the Coastal Oregon RAC

EPA receives EIS's for comment

EPA: SFIREG to meet Dec. 8-9

EPA announces 30-day public comment period for the draft document titled, "Regional Monitoring Networks to Detect Climate Change Effects in Stream Ecosystems''   | Document is here

FS: Umatilla National Forest, Pomeroy Ranger District to prepare EIS to analyze vegetation management and fuels treatment actions within the Asotin watershed in Garfield and Asotin Counties, Washington. The purpose of the project is to move species composition, structural characteristics, density, and fuel loading of the project area closer to ranges of desired conditions described in the Umatilla Land and Resource Management Plan | More

Rural Utilities Service: Energy Answers Arecibo Puerto Rico Renewable Energy Project: Notice of Cancellation of a Supplemental Final Environmental Impact Statement and Notice of Public Scoping and Intent To Prepare an Environmental Impact Statement

Rural Utilities Service seeks public and federal agency comments regarding the preparation of a Programmatic Environmental Assessment for the development of a more efficient and effective environmental review process for the RUS Telecommunications Program

Coast Guard proposes to establish minimum design, operation, training, and manning standards for mobile offshore drilling units and other vessels using dynamic positioning systems to engage in Outer Continental Shelf activities; categorical exclusion approved (meaning no further environmental documentation required)

--------------- Thursday, Nov. 27 - Thanksgiving ---------------

Wednesday, Nov. 26

FWS receives ITP application and Habitat Conservation Plan for Vulcan Materials Company, Florida Rock Division. The HCP describes the minimization and mitigation measures proposed to address the effects on the sand skink and gopher tortoise of incremental mining of sand reserves throughout the permitted mining limits of approximately 537.46-acre project area in Polk County over the life of the mine

FWS asks for comment on six incidental take permit applications for take of the federally listed American burying beetle resulting from activities associated with the construction, operation, maintenance, repair, and decommissioning of oil and gas pipelines and related well field activities in Oklahoma

DOI issues Final Sale Notice for the sale of four commercial wind energy leases on the Outer Continental Shelf offshore Massachusetts | More here

DOI: Notice of Availability of a Second Draft Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement and Notice of Public Hearings; Correction

DOJ announces proposed Consent Decree requiring measures intended to reduce or eliminate sewage overflows from Kansas City's sewer system | Consent decrees

NOAA announces meeting via web conference call of the Sanctuary System Business Advisory Council

FHWA, on behalf of the California Department of Transportation, issues notice advising the public that it has rescinded the FONSI issued on May 18, 2010, and published on Dec. 19, 2011, in the Federal Register for a proposed highway project on U.S. Route 101 in Humboldt County

Tuesday, Nov. 25

NMFS issues regulations to implement Steller sea lion protection measures to insure that groundfish fisheries in the Bering Sea and Aleutian Islands Management Area (BSAI) off Alaska are not likely to jeopardize the continued existence of the western distinct population segment (WDPS) of Steller sea lions or destroy or adversely modify their designated critical habitat. These management measures disperse fishing effort temporally and spatially to provide protection from potential competition for important Steller sea lion prey species.

Corps begins scoping process for the preparation of an integrated Feasibility Report and EIS/R for proposed improvements to the existing navigation project at Redwood City Harbor and San Bruno Shoal.

FWS releases FEIS, draft ROD on the proposed revisions to the regulations for the nonessential experimental population designation of the Mexican wolf | More here

Trinity Adaptive Management Working Group to meet Dec. 15-16

Monday, Nov. 24

FWS releases draft recovery plan for Santa Ana sucker | Plan will be here Monday, Nov. 24 | Direct link to plan

USACE to prepare Draft Integrated Feasibility Report and EIS to evaluate structural and non-structural alternatives in the Sabine Pass to Galveston Bay, Texas, study area, encompassing six coastal counties on the upper Texas Gulf coast--Orange, Jefferson, Chambers, Harris, Galveston and Brazoria. The DIFR-EIS will address coastal storm risk management and ecosystem restoration impacts in the study area. The EIS will examine environmental and social conditions currently present and those likely to be affected by potential future impacts of storm surge and ecosystem restoration opportunities.

Gulf Coast Ecosystem Restoration Council: Compilation of the Council’s pre-award requirements for grants and cooperative agreements, including all amendments and revisions to date

The Commander of the Northwestern Division of the Army Corps of Engineers is soliciting applications to fill vacant stakeholder representative member positions on the Missouri River Recovery Implementation Committee

NOAA to prepare a draft EIS for the Proposed He'eia National Estuarine Research Reserve in Kane'ohe Bay, Hawai'i

Friday, Nov. 21

FWS releases final CCP and EA/FONSI for Great Swamp National Wildlife Refuge, located in Morris County, New Jersey

EPA receives EIS's for review

BIA, as lead agency in cooperation with the Moapa Band of Paiute Indians, BLM and other federal agencies, will prepare an EIS to evaluate a photovoltaic solar energy generation project on the Moapa River Indian Reservation and a transmission line located on tribal lands, private lands and BLM lands in Clark County, Nevada.

BIA, in cooperation with the Confederated Tribes of the Colville Reservation, intends to gather information necessary to prepare a programmatic EIS for the proposed Integrated Resource Management Plan for the Colville Reservation in Okanogan and Ferry counties, Washington

NMFS will hold a public hearing in St. Thomas, U.S. Virgin Islands, in December 2014 for the purpose of accepting public comments on the proposal to list the Nassau grouper (Epinephelus striatus) as threatened

NMFS release final EA on application from the California Department of Fish and Wildlife for a Scientific Purposes and Enhancement of Survival Permit for a Hatchery and Genetic Management Plan (HGMP) for take of a threatened species. NMFS has decided to issue a permit to CDFW for activities described in their HGMP, and has authorized the Hatchery and Genetic Management Plan (HGMP) for the Iron Gate Hatchery coho salmon program in the Klamath River watershed in California.

Briana Witteveen, Ph.D., of the University of Alaska, Fairbanks, Kodiak Seafood and Marine Science Center (118 Trident Way, Kodiak, AK, 99615), has applied in due form for a permit to take multiple cetacean species for purposes of scientific research, with additional takes of several pinniped species by incidental harassment, within the Gulf of Alaska.

FERC: Minnesota Housing Associates intends to utilize FERC 's alternative licensing process and prepare an Applicant Prepared Environmental Assessment and license application for the A-Mill Project.

FERC to prepare EA on Texas Eastern's Bailey East Mine Panel 2L Project in Docket No. CP14-545-000. The project involves the excavation, abandonment, replacement, temporary elevation, and reburial of pipeline facilities currently operated by Texas Eastern Transmission, LP in Greene County, Pennsylvania to facilitate the underground longwall mining of coal

FERC releases EA for the Rock Springs Expansion Project proposed by Transcontinental Gas Pipe Line Company, LLC. Transco requests authorization to construct and operate natural gas pipeline facilities in Lancaster County, Pennsylvania and Cecil County, Maryland.

FERC to prepare EIS on Juneau Hydropower project on Lower Sweetheart Lake and Sweetheart Creek in the City and Borough
of Juneau, Alaska. The project would occupy about 2,058 acres of federal lands located in the Tongass National Forest administered by the U.S. Forest Service.

FERC issues supplemental NOI to prepare an EA for the Planned Dalton Expansion Project, involving construction and operation of new pipeline and aboveground facilities in Georgia and the modification of Transco’s existing mainline system in Maryland, Virginia, and North Carolina

Thursday, Nov. 20

FWS lists Gunnison sage grouse as threatened | More on the bird here and in our story here

USACE to prepare DEIS, begin public scoping period and host public scoping meetings for the Great Lakes and Mississippi River Interbasin Study (“GLMRIS”)-Evaluation of Aquatic Nuisance Species Controls Near Brandon Road Lock and Dam | More

DOE releases Record of Decision and Floodplain Statement of Findings for the Freeport LNG Expansion, L.P. Export Application. "The proposed exports will originate from the existing Freeport Terminal, located on Quintana Island, southeast of the City of Freeport in Brazoria County, Texas, from liquefaction and related facilities to be constructed." | DOE NEPA page

FHwA to prepare EIS for a proposed freeway corridor improvement project on I-39/90/94 from the US 12/18 Interchange to the I-39/WIS 78 interchange in Dane and Columbia Counties in south-central Wisconsin.

Wednesday, Nov. 19

BIA, as lead agency in cooperation with the Las Vegas Paiute Tribe, BLM and other federal agencies, will prepare an EIS on proposed photovoltaic solar energy generation project on the Las Vegas Paiute Indian Reservation and a transmission line located on tribal lands, private lands and/or federal lands administered and managed by BLM in Clark County, Nevada

BuRec releases Central Valley Project Municipal and Industrial Water Shortage Policy Draft EIS | More here

Tuesday, Nov. 18

FWS extends comment period to Dec. 18, 2014, on proposal to list northern long-eared bat.

FWS to prepare a NEPA document for an anticipated Incidental Take Permit (ITP) application and associated draft habitat conservation plan (HCP) from the North Allegheny Wind, LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Duke Energy Generating Services (or Duke Energy Renewables) for operation of their wind facility within occupied habitat of the northern long-eared bat (Myotis septentrionalis) and the federally listed endangered Indiana bat (Myotis sodalis) | Docket

FWS releases revised joint Safe Harbor Agreement and Candidate Conservation Agreement with Assurances and accompanying documents for establishing a programmatic enrollment of willing landowners by the parties to the revised agreement: Arkansas Game and Fish Commission, Natural Resources Conservation Service, The Nature Conservancy, and the Fish and Wildlife Service, Arkansas Ecological Services Field Office. The revised agreement analyzes effects of conservation measures and certain land uses on two endangered species--the yellowcheek darter (Etheostoma moorei), a fish, and rabbitsfoot (Quadrula cylindrica cylindrica), a mussel--in the Upper Little Red River Watershed, northcentral Arkansas, so that these listed species, as well as 19 candidate and other unlisted species, might be added to those already covered by the existing enhancement of survival permits.

Bureau of Reclamation has prepared Resource Management Plan/FEIS for the Newlands Project | More

FERC to prepare EIS for the Planned Rover Pipeline Project in multiple counties in Michigan, Ohio, West Virginia, and Pennsylvania

Monday, Nov. 17

FWS receives applications for endangered species permits

FERC releases EIS for projects proposed by Jordan Cove Energy Project LP and Pacific Connector Gas Pipeline LP. The project facilities would be located in Coos, Douglas, Jackson, and Klamath counties, Oregon.

FHWA and North Dakota DOT will not prepare an EIS for a proposed highway project in Grand Forks County, North Dakota and Polk County, Minnesota

FHwA will prepare EIS for a proposed freeway corridor improvement project on I-90/94 from Wisconsin Dells to Portage in
Juneau, Sauk, and Columbia Counties in south-central Wisconsin

NMFS announces revised taxonomy of Monachus schauinslandi (Hawaiian monk seal) under the ESA. "We are revising the Enumeration of endangered marine and anadromous species and Critical habitat for Hawaiian monk seals to reflect the scientifically accepted taxonomy and nomenclature of this species. We revise the scientific name of the species as follows: Neomonachus schauinslandi (= M. schauinslandi).

NMFS receives application from the National Science Foundation (NSF) Division of Polar Programs, and Antarctic Support Contract (ASC) on behalf of Louisiana State University, for an Incidental Harassment Authorization (IHA) to take marine mammals, by harassment, incidental to conducting a low-energy marine geophysical (seismic) survey in the Ross Sea, January to February 2015

Delaware Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control [Michael Stangl, Responsible Party], has applied for a permit to take shortnose sturgeon (Acipenser brevirostrum) in the Delaware River for purposes of scientific research

NMFS "corrects a web address provided for availability of the [California Eelgrass Mitigation Policy] and Implementing Guidelines, responses to comments received on the draft CEMP, and other supporting documents" in a notice published on Nov. 7, 2014.

Friday, Nov. 14

FWS: Draft multi-species general conservation plan released for Douglas County, Washington. The service and the Foster Creek Conservation District developed the draft plan as a programmatic approach to streamline the development of individual farm plans by non-federal agricultural landowners and operators to facilitate their applying for incidental take permits (ITPs) | More

Office of National Marine Sanctuaries seeks nominations for seats on National Marine Sanctuary Advisory Councils

Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary releases EA/FONSI analyzing potential impacts of a slant test well project proposed by California American Water, a privately-owned water and wastewater company | More

BLM's Pecos District Resource Advisory Council’s Lesser Prairie-Chicken (LPC) Habitat Preservation Area of Critical Environmental Concerns (ACEC) Livestock Grazing Subcommittee will meet Dec. 11

Thursday, Nov. 13

NMFS designates critical habitat for threatened yelloweye rockfish (Sebastes ruberrimus) Distinct Population Segment (DPS),
threatened canary rockfish (S. pinniger) DPS, and the endangered bocaccio (S. paucispinus) DPS (listed rockfish). The specific areas in the final designation include 590.4 square miles of nearshore habitat for canary rockfish and bocaccio, and 414.1 square miles of deepwater habitat for yelloweye rockfish, canary rockfish and bocaccio. Final designation is a reduction of about 15.2 percent (180.3 sq mi) for canary rockfish and bocaccio, and a reduction of approximately 28 percent (160 sq mi) for yelloweye rockfish, compared to Aug. 6, 2013, proposal | More information

FWS adds 20 coral species to list of threatened and endangered wildlife (technical change; species have already been added to the list by NMFS,which has jurisdiction)

FWS receives recovery permit application (hawksbill sea turtle)

NPS releases FEIS for the Cottonwood Cove and Katherine Landing Development Concept Plans, Lake Mead National Recreation Area | More

FHwA releases ROD re: the Virginia Avenue Tunnel Reconstruction Project in Washington, D.C

FHwA says any claim seeking judicial review of the federal agency actions on the Bayview Transportation Improvements
Project affecting various streets within Bayview and Hunters Point in the City and County of San Francisco highway project will be barred unless the claim is filed on or before 150 days from the date of FR publication | More

Wednesday, Nov. 12

FWS reopens comment period for 60 days on proposal to designate critical habitat for the western distinct population segment of the yellow-billed cuckoo (scheduled for 11/12 publication)

North American Wetlands Conservation Council will meet Dec. 9 to select North American Wetlands Conservation Act grant proposals for recommendation to the Migratory Bird Conservation Commission; Advisory Group for the Neotropical Migratory Bird Conservation Act grants program will meet Dec. 10. Both meetings to be held in D.C. | More here

BLM issues Proposed RMP and FEIS for the West Eugene Wetlands    |    More

Monday, Nov. 10

Army Corps, Mobile District, releases FEIS for the update of the Alabama-Coosa-Tallapoosa River Basin (ACT) Water Control Master Manual

National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency will prepare an EIS to analyze potential impacts to the quality of the human environment resulting from the proposed construction and operation of new, modern facilities in the St. Louis metropolitan area

Friday, Nov. 7

EPA: Weekly receipt of EIS's for review

FHwA issues "notice of omission" to let the public know that 10 comments submitted by e-mail during the comment period for the South Mountain Freeway (Loop 202) Interstate 10 (Papago Freeway) to Interstate 10 (Maricopa Freeway) DEIS Section 4(f) Evaluation were inadvertently omitted from the South Mountain Freeway (Loop 202) Interstate 10 (Papago Freeway) to Interstate 10 (Maricopa Freeway) Final Environmental Impact Statement and Section 4(f) Evaluation. Whoops.

FWS sends survey to OMB for review. The survey "is designed to elicit information about the public’s perspectives on attitudes towards and beliefs about jaguars in the Northwestern Recovery Unit (southern Arizona and southwestern New Mexico). We plan to survey 200 residents, land-based business owners/operators, related government agency personnel, and local wildlife association and/or conservation organization members in the Northwestern Recovery Unit."

FWS prepares EIS on Orange County Transportation Authority's application for Incidental Take Permit permit covering construction and habitat management and monitoring activities within areas affected by covered freeway projects and in preserves in Orange County, California  | More

NMFS issues final California Eelgrass Mitigation Policy (CEMP) and Implementing Guidelines by NMFS West Coast Region (WCR) to agencies
and the public to ensure there is a clear and transparent process for developing eelgrass mitigation recommendations.

BLM issues final supplemental EIS for the Alpine Satellite Development Plan for the Proposed Greater Mooses Tooth (GMT) Unit Development
Project, Alaska | More

BOEM issues draft second supplemental EIS for the Chukchi Sea Planning Area, OCS Oil and Gas Lease Sale 193 | More

BOEM, in cooperation with NMFS, is issuing a request for information to aid in the development of a long-term monitoring plan (LTMP) for marine mammals in the Gulf of Mexico

Thursday, Nov. 6

BLM issues interim final supplementary rules "to enhance the safety of visitors and local residents and reduce the risk of undue ecological degradation to Kanaka Valley's rare soils and plants and other significant values." The rules "are in accordance with the Kanaka Valley Management Plan (2013)." Kanaka Valley is in El Dorado County, California. | More

Central Valley Project: BuRec releases Standard Criteria for Agricultural and Urban Water Management Plans for public comment | Criteria are here

FWS releases final recovery plan for the endangered Georgia pigtoe mussel, interrupted rocksnail, and rough hornsnail | Plan is here

FWS receives endangered species, marine mammal permit applications

FS: Fremont-Winema NF is preparing an EIS to document the analysis of grazing management within all or portions of three allotments on the Fremont-Winema National Forests. ("Grazing would be allowed in some fenced riparian areas, additional acreage identified in the Jack Creek Sheep and Goat Allotment, and grazing of the private parcels along Jack Creek known as Upper Jamison, and Lower Jamison under a term private land grazing permit. This would facilitate coordinated management of Oregon spotted frog habitat across ownerships.")

NMFS proposes to amend the regulations implementing the Atlantic Large Whale Take Reduction Plan to modify the start date of the Massachusetts Restricted Area to begin on February 1, 2015, and to expand the Massachusetts Restricted Area by 912 square miles | More

FERC releases EA for the Tuscarora Lateral Project, proposed by Empire Pipeline, Inc. and National Fuel Gas Supply Corporation (collectively known as National Fuel) in the above-referenced dockets. National Fuel requests authorization to construct and operate natural gas pipeline facilities in New York and Tioga County, Pennsylvania

FERC issues supplemental Notice of Intent to prepare EA for the proposed Ozark Abandonment Project in Arkansa; requests comments on environmental issues

FERC issues supplemental Notice of Intent to prepare an EIS for the planned Downeast LNG Import-Export Project; requests comments on environmental issues

Federal Transit Administration (FTA), in cooperation with the Regional Transportation District (RTD), rescinds Record of Decision (ROD) for the proposed North Metro Corridor project in Denver

Wednesday, Nov. 5

Pollinator Health Task Force to hold public listening sessions Nov. 12 and 17 in Washington, D.C., area | More info

FWS removes yellow-billed magpie (Pica nuttalli) from depredation order. A depredation permit will be necessary to control the species, which is endemic to California, has suffered substantial population declines, and is a species of conservation concern.

NMFS has received 11 scientific research permit application requests relating to Pacific salmon, sturgeon, rockfish, and eulachon | Permits open for comment

NMFS has received one permit application request to modify an existing research and enhancement permit (abalone)

NMFS determines that the queen conch does not warrant listing. WildEarth Guardians submitted petition | SE regional office petitions page

DOJ: Proposed consent decree in U.S. v. Superior Crude Gathering (14- 433) has been lodged with the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Texas on Oct. 29. " The complaint was filed on the same day and seeks civil penalties under Section 311 of the Clean Water Act related to the unauthorized discharge of oil from two crude oil storage tanks at the Superior Crude storage facility in Ingleside, Texas and for violations of spill prevention and planning regulations." | Consent decrees

Tuesday, Nov. 4

FHwA announces that actions taken in Georgia on a highway by USACE and other federal agencies are final within the meaning of 23 U.S.C.139(l)(1). "The I-75 Express Lanes Project will design a managed lane system along I-75 from the SR 155 (Zack Hinton Parkway, South) interchange in Henry County north to the SR 138 (Stockbridge Highway) interchange in Clayton County located in Georgia. The project spans a distance of approximately 17.94 miles. Those actions grant licenses, permits and approvals for the project. "Notice is hereby given that, subsequent to the earlier FHWA notice, the USACE has taken final agency actions within the meaning of 23 U.S.C§ 139(1)(1) by issuing a permit and approval for the highway project"

NMFS issues an incidental harassment authorization to the U.S. Navy to incidentally harass, by Level B harassment only, six species of marine mammals during construction activities associated with a pier replacement project at Naval Base Point Loma, San Diego, California.

Monday, Nov. 3

CEQ "informs the public of the opportunity for eligible non-governmental entities to submit an application for co-sponsorship of a potential White House Council on Environmental Quality 2015 GreenGov Symposium. Those interested in becoming co-sponsors should submit an application for co-sponsorship by Nov. 28."

FERC releases EA on application for a new license for the 451.8-megawatt (MW) Kinzua Pumped Storage Project located on the Allegheny River in Warren County, Pennsylvania, adjacent to the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers' (Corps) Kinzua dam and has prepared an environmental assessment

NRC will prepare EIS to evaluate the potential environmental impacts of Army's proposed license termination for the Depleted Uranium Impact Area at the Jefferson Proving Ground in Madison, Indiana, under restricted conditions | Docket

Friday, Oct. 31

Army releases DEIS for proposed training and operations at Piñon Canyon Maneuver Site, which is the maneuver site for Fort Carson and is located near Trinidad, Colo., about 150 miles southeast of Fort Carson. The draft EIS evaluates the impacts of "conduct[ing] realistic, coordinated, large-scale training that integrates the ground and air resources of Fort Carson’s mechanized, infantry, support, and combat aviation units."

BLM requests public comment on draft Resource Management Plan (RMP) and DEIS for the Southeastern States Planning Area

Corps to prepare EIS for the Proposed Mississippi River Reintroduction Into the Maurepas Swamp Diversion Project, Near Garyville, Louisiana, in St. John the Baptist, St. James, and Ascension Parishes | More from Corps' New Orleans District page

EPA receives EIS's for review

FERC to prepare EA on impacts of the Wind Ridge Pipeline Project involving construction and operation of facilities by WBI Energy Wind Ridge Pipeline, LLC and WBI Energy Transmission, Inc. (Companies) in McIntosh, Logan, LaMoure, and Stutsman Counties, North Dakota

Federal and state natural resource trustee agencies have issued a Record of Decision (ROD) for the Final Programmatic and Phase III Early Restoration Plan and Early Restoration Programmatic Environmental Impact Statement (Final Phase III ERP/PEIS).  |  More here

FERC to prepare EA on impacts of the Compressor Station 245 Horsepower Replacement Project involving construction and operation of facilities by Tennessee Gas Pipeline Company, LLC (TGP) in Herkimer County, New York

FERC releases FEIS for the Constitution Pipeline and Wright Interconnect Projects, proposed by Constitution Pipeline Company, LLC (Constitution) and Iroquois Gas Transmission System, L.P. (Iroquois) in the above- referenced dockets. Constitution and Iroquois request authorization to construct and operate certain interstate natural gas pipeline facilities in Pennsylvania and New York to deliver up to 650,000 dekatherms per day of natural gas supply to markets in New York and New England.

Bureau of Prisons releases EA on a proposal to award a contract for new low-security beds to one private contractor to house approximately 2,000 federal, low-security, adult male, non-U.S. Citizen, criminal aliens at a contractor-owned, contractor-operated correctional facility under the CAR 15, Requirement B Initiative

STB's Office of Environmental Analysis issues supplemental EA on potential operational impacts of CSXT moving additional trains on the following three CSXT rail lines: Indianapolis Terminal Subdivision--Louisville Secondary Branch, Indianapolis Line Subdivision, and Louisville Connection. The Supplemental EA analyzes potential impacts to wetlands, floodplains, and forested areas that could result from extending rail line sidings and replacing the Flatrock River Bridge on the L&I Line, and includes a review of potential changes in wildlife strikes.EA is available at  stb.dot.gov, by clicking "Decisions'' under "Quick Links," and locating the document under the service date of 10/31/2014

Thursday, Oct. 30

FWS to prepare EIS on Nebraska Public Power District's proposal to apply for incidental take permit for take of the American burying beetle associated with the construction, operation, and maintenance of the R-Project Transmission Line in north-central Nebraska.

FWS proposes to include the common snapping turtle (Chelydra serpentina), Florida softshell turtle (Apalone ferox), smooth softshell turtle (Apalone mutica), and spiny softshell turtle (Apalone spinifera) in Appendix III of the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES or Convention), including live and dead whole specimens, and all readily recognizable parts, products, and derivatives. Listing these four native U.S. freshwater turtle species (including their subspecies, except Apalone spinifera atra, which is already included in Appendix I of CITES) in Appendix III of CITES is necessary to allow us to adequately monitor international trade in these species; to determine whether exports are occurring legally, with respect to State and Federal law; and to determine whether further measures under CITES or other laws are required to conserve these species.

FWS asks for comments on endangered species permit applications

USACE withdraws NOI to prepare EIS "until the economic demand for improvements to the Sacramento River Deep Water Channel improves."

NMFS receives marine mammal scientific research permit applications | All permit applications

NOAA releases Draft Science Plan for the NOAA RESTORE Act Science Program for public comment | Plan will be here

BLM proposes supplementary rules for all BLM-administered lands within the Jupiter Inlet Lighthouse Outstanding Natural Area in Palm Beach County, Florida

Wednesday, Oct. 29

FWS proposes listing African lion as threatened | Docket

FWS asks for comment on an incidental take permit application for take of the federally listed American burying beetle resulting from activities associated with the construction, operation, maintenance, repair, and decommissioning of oil and gas pipelines and related well field activities in Oklahoma | ABBICP page

Helena National Forest is going to prepare an EIS for vegetation management actions in the Tenmile Municipal Watershed and the South Hills of the City of Helena east of the Continental Divide

BLM's Las Vegas Field Office will terminate the process for preparing a Recreation Area Management Plan (RAMP), Comprehensive Transportation and Travel Management (CTTM) Plan, and associated EIS for the Las Vegas Field Office.

FERC will prepare EA on environmental impacts of the Northern Access 2016 Project involving construction and operation of facilities by National Fuel Gas Supply Corporation and Empire Pipeline Inc. (collectively National Fuel) in Pennsylvania and New York

DOJ announces proposed consent decree, filed in U.S. v. Kiryas Joel Poultry Processing Plant (14-8458, S.D.N.Y.). CD proposes $330,000 civil penalty, as well as "enhanced monitoring of the plant’s effluent and the submission of, and compliance with, contingency plans in the event of equipment failures, and any further pass-throughs or interferences at the POTW."

Tuesday, Oct. 28

NMFS issues amendment to Permit No. 16087-01 to NMFS National Marine Mammal Laboratory, Seattle, WA to conduct research on pinnipeds.

Randy Sacco, Ph.D., Ruminant Diseases and Immunology Research Unit, National Animal Disease Center, 1920 Dayton Road, P.O. Box 70,
Ames, IA 50010, has applied in due form for a permit to receive cell line specimens of marine mammals for scientific research purposes

NPS issues ROD for FEIS for the Fishery Management Plan (FMP) for Biscayne National Park | More here

NPS issues ROD for the General Management Plan (GMP) for Canaveral National Seashore

Forest Service lets people know which newspapers will be used by the Ranger Districts, Grasslands, Forests and the Regional Office of the Southern Region to publish notices required under 36 CFR parts 218 and 219

Monday, Oct. 27

FWS issues Supplemental EIR/S to the approved and certified September 2007 Final Recirculated EIR/EIS for the Coachella Valley Multiple Species Habitat Conservation Plan/Natural Communities Conservation Plan. It considers the environmental effects associated with adding Desert Hot Springs and Mission Springs Water District as permittees to the HCP, and amending the existing incidental take permit | CVMSHCP page and Plan Documents

NMFS issues Letter of Authorization to the City of Seattle’s Department of Transportation (SDOT) for the take of eight species of marine mammals incidental to pile driving activities associated with the Elliott Bay Seawall Project

Commerce and Interior departments jointly propose an updated Framework for the National System of Marine Protected Areas of the United
States

Surface Transportation Board to prepare EIS on Canaveral Port Authority's plans to build and operate approximately 11 miles of new rail line to Port Canaveral in Brevard County, Florida. The proposed Port Canaveral Rail Extension (PCRE) would also use approximately 17 miles of existing rail line at the NASA John F. Kennedy Space Center (KSC) to make a connection with a main line of the Florida East Coast Railway

Friday, Oct. 24

EPA, Corps announce availability of the EPA Science Advisory Board’s final peer review of the EPA’s draft report, Connectivity of Streams and Wetlands to Downstream Waters: A Review and Synthesis.

FWS receives applications to conduct certain activities with endangered species, marine mammals, or both

Forest Service updates the scoping period from 30 days to 45 days re: intention to prepare an EIS for the Johnson Bar Fire Salvage Project, Nez Perce-Clearwater National Forest; also gives notice that the proposed project will be subject to 36 CFR 218 subpart A and B regulations. The original notice was published in the Federal Register on October 16, 2014 (see below)

Corps to prepare EIS and conduct scoping meeting for the Berths 226-236 [Everport] Container Terminal Improvements Project at the Port of Los Angeles, in the City and County of Los Angeles, California (SPL-2013-00756-TS).

NOAA SAB to meet Nov. 17-18 in Silver Spring | SAB site

Thursday, Oct. 23

Corps Los Angeles District, in coordination with the non-federal sponsor, Los Angeles County Department of Public Works, will prepare an Integrated Feasibility Study and EIS/R for the Arroyo Seco Environmental Restoration Study

Corps' Baltimore District and and the non-federal sponsor, the Maryland Port Administration, plan to prepare a decision document and supporting Supplemental EIS to execute Phase II of the Baltimore Harbor and Channels 50-Foot project to complete the construction of the project channels to their authorized widths and consider reformulation of the plan to develop new alternatives

FERC issues EA assessing the potential environmental effects of construction and operation of the Edgemoor Compressor Station Project in Chester County, South Carolina

FERC issues EA for new licenses for the West Branch Project (FERC Project No. 2618) and the Forest City Project (FERC Project No. 2660). The West Branch Project is located on the West Branch of the St. Croix River in Penobscot, Washington, and Hancock Counties, Maine. The Forest City Project is located on the East Branch of the St. Croix River in Washington and Aroostook Counties, Maine

FRA and the Virginia Department of Rail and Public Transportation will be preparing a Tier II EIS for a 123-mile portion of the Southeast High Speed Rail Corridor from Washington, DC to Richmond, Virginia

Bureau of Ocean Energy Management to prepare an EIS for proposed Lease Sale 244 in the Cook Inlet Program Area. "While including most of the areas identified by industry in their responses to the March 27, 2012, Request for Interest, the proposed lease sale area in the Area ID also:

• excludes the majority of the designated critical habitat areas for beluga whale and northern sea otter, and excludes the critical habitat areas for Steller sea lions and the North Pacific right whale;
• reduces potential effects to parks, preserves, and wildlife refuges by placing a buffer between the area considered for leasing and the Katmai National Park and Preserve, the Kodiak National Wildlife Refuge, and the Alaska Maritime National Wildlife Refuge

Wednesday, Oct. 22

FWS  releases CCP/EA for James River National Wildlife Refuge in Prince George County, Va. | More

FWS asks for comment on Information Collection Request re: Migratory Birds and Wetlands Conservation Grant Programs.

NMFS begins status review of the Guadalupe fur seal (Arctocephalus townsendi) | Docket will be here | NMFS page on the species

Good Neighbor Environmental Board's Public Advisory Cmte to hold teleconference to discuss annual report on ecological restoration along U.S.-Mexico border

FERC: In response to concerns raised about the Sabal Trail Transmission LLC's planned Sabal Trail Project, additional pipeline route alternatives and compressor station location alternatives are now being considered. These alternatives which are described below would affect new landowners; therefore, FERC is issuing this supplemental notice (Notice) to provide these landowners and other interested parties an opportunity to comment on the project

Tuesday, Oct. 21

FTA and the Metropolitan Atlanta Rapid Transit Authority to prepare EIS and an evaluation per 49 U.S.C. 303 and 23 CFR 774 ("Section 4(f)'') for a new Light Rail Transit (LRT) line in DeKalb and Fulton Counties, Georgia

BLM to prepare EIS for the proposed Uinkaret Mountains Landscape Restoration Project, Arizona Strip, Mohave County, AZ

Monday, Oct. 20

Clyde Peeling’s Reptiland, Allenwood, PA (PRT-42675B), requests a captive-bred wildlife registration under 50 CFR 17.21(g) for Crocodylidae, spotted pond turtle (Geoclemys hamiltonii), radiated tortoise (Astrochelys radiata), Galapagos tortoise (Chelonoidis nigra), aquatic box turtle (Terrapene coahuila), yellow-spotted river turtle (Podocnemis unifilis), Indian python (Python molurus molurus includes P. m. pimbina), Aruba Island rattlesnake (Crotalus durissus unicolor), Cuban ground iguana (Cyclura nubila nubila), Grand Cayman blue iguana (Cyclura lewisi), San Esteban Island chuckwalla (Sauromalus varius), and Komodo monitor (Varanus komodoensis) to enhance the species’ propagation or survival. This notification covers activities to be conducted by the applicant over a 5-year period.

FWS grants permits to conduct activities with endangered species, marine mammals, or both

Friday, Oct. 17

Presidential proclamation establishing San Gabriel Mountains National Monument

Corps will prepare EIS to evaluate project alternatives and the public interest review factors, as well as the effects on Back Bay National Wildlife Refuge for the proposed mooring and launching facility.

EPA receives EIS's for comment

FWS extends comment period to Nov. 17 on March 27, 2014, proposed rule to reclassify the arroyo toad (Anaxyrus californicus) as threatened. "We anticipate publishing a final determination on or before March 27, 2015."

FWS asks for comments on endangered species permit applications (Southeast)

Intent to prepare EIS: Forest Service and BLM-- the Saguache Ranger District, Rio Grande National Forest, and BLM's San Luis Valley Field Office -- propose to conduct restoration activities on up to 90,000 acres within the 187,778 acre La Gartia Hills analysis area; approximately 145,709 acres are managed by the USFS and 33,294 acres are managed by the BLM. All activities would occur only on federal lands. | More

Thursday, Oct. 16

NMFS issues 3-year permit authorizing the incidental, but not intentional, taking of individuals of three stocks of marine mammals listed as threatened or endangered under the Endangered Species Act (ESA) by vessels involved in the Hawaii deep-set and shallow-set longline fisheries: the endangered humpback whale, (Megaptera novaeangliae), Central North Pacific stock; sperm whale, (Physeter macrocephalus), Hawaii stock; and false killer whale, (Pseudorca crassidens), Main Hawaiian Islands insular false killer whale (MHI IFKW) stock.

FERC issues final EIS for the Corpus Christi LNG Project, proposed by Corpus Christi Liquefaction, LLC and Cheniere Corpus Christi Pipeline

FS to prepare EIS for the Johnson Bar Fire Salvage Project (Nez Perce-Clearwater NF, Idaho)

Invasive Species Advisory Committee to meet in San Antonio November 12–14, 2014 in San Antonio | web site

BLM: Pecos District Resource Advisory Council’s Lesser Prairie-Chicken Habitat Preservation Area of Critical Environmental Concerns Livestock Grazing Subcommittee will meet Nov. 4

Nominations are being sought for appointment to two new task forces of the Marine Fisheries Advisory Committee (MAFAC) to support its advisory work for the Secretary of Commerce on living marine resource matters. One task force will focus on climate and marine resources issues and the other on aquaculture issues

DOI: The Office of Natural Resources Revenue (ONRR) and Office of Hearing and Appeals (OHA) are amending and clarifying regulations concerning certain aspects of appeals of ONRR correspondence and clarifying the final administrative nature of ONRR orders that are not paid or appealed.

Wednesday, Oct. 15

APHIS requests revision to and extension of approval of an information collection associated with the regulations for protection of endangered species of terrestrial plants and for procedures related to the forfeiture of plants or other property.

FHWA issues notice to advise the public about the resumption of environmental activities leading to a Tier 2 Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) for the proposed Section 6 of I-69, located in Morgan, Johnson and Marion Counties, Indiana, of the Evansville-to-Indianapolis Interstate 69 (I-69) highway

Klamath National Forest will prepare an environmental impact statement (EIS) on a proposal to reduce safety hazards to the public and forest workers, obtain the maximum economic commodity values from burned timber, and increase the likelihood and speed by which burned forested areas are regenerated on about 63,883 acres that burned with high severity in the Beaver Creek, Whites, and Happy Camp Complex fires in 2014

Tuesday, Oct. 14

EPA, Corps extend comment period to Nov. 14 on "waters of the U.S." proposal | Docket

FERC will prepare an EA on environmental impacts of the Ozark Abandonment Project involving abandonment of facilities by Ozark Gas Transmission, LLC

FERC will prepare EIS on impacts of the Downeast LNG Export Project involving construction and operation of facilities by Downeast Liquefaction, LLC in Washington County, Maine

FERC will prepare EIS on environmental impacts of the Mississippi River Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) Project involving construction and operation of a LNG facility by Louisiana LNG Energy, LLC in Plaquemines Parish, Louisiana

FERC, hydroelectric applications: Notice of Joint Scoping Meetings With the California State Water Resources Control Board and Environmental Site Review and Soliciting Scoping Comments

NMFS to prepare EIS on impacts of issuing Incidental Take Authorizations (ITAs) under the MMPA incidental to anthropogenic activities in the waters of Cook Inlet, Alaska

NOAA's Damage Assessment, Remediation, and Restoration Program (DARRP) is announcing new indirect cost rates on the recovery of indirect costs for its component organizations involved in natural resource damage assessment and restoration activities for fiscal year (FY) 2013

NMFS issues major amendment to Permit No. 17115-02 to James Lloyd-Smith, Ph.D., Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, University of California, Los Angeles (to conduct research on California sea lions)

NMFS issues permit to Terrie M. Williams, Ph.D., Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, Center for Ocean Health, Long Marine Laboratory, University of California Santa Cruz, 100 Shaffer Road, Santa Cruz, CA 95060, to conduct research on Weddell seals (Leptonycotes weddellii).

Point Blue Conservation Science, formerly PRBO Conservation Science, 3820 Cypress Drive, # 11, Petaluma, CA 94954 (Responsible Party: Russ
Bradley), has applied for an amendment to Scientific Research Permit No. 17152

Monday, Oct. 13 - Federal holiday (Columbus Day)

Friday, Oct. 10

FWS receives application from RE Barren Ridge 1 LLC, a subsidiary of Recurrent Energy LLC, for a 40-year incidental take permit. The service, in cooperation and coordination with the applicant, has prepared a draft EA for the applicant’s permit application and proposed RE Cinco Solar Facility Habitat Conservation Plan (HCP). If approved, the permit would authorize incidental take for the federally threatened desert tortoise, associated with construction, operation, maintenance, and decommissioning of a photovoltaic solar facility in the Kern County

EPA receives EIS's for review

FHwA has received and reviewed an application from the Texas Department of Transportation requesting participation in the Surface Transportation Project Delivery Program. This program allows for states to apply to assume, and for FHwA to assign, environmental review responsibilities under NEPA, and all or part of FHwA’s responsibilities for environmental reviews, consultations, or other actions required under any federal environmental law with respect to one or more federal highway projects within the state. The FHwA has determined the application to be complete, and developed a draft MOU with the State outlining how the state will implement the program, with FHwA oversight.

FS to prepare EIS analyze the impacts of timber harvest and associated activities on approximately 3,800 acres
of forestland and savannahs in the Beasley Pond Analysis Area, Apalachicola National Forest, FL

FS: Shawnee National Forest in Illinois intends to prepare an EIS to disclose the environmental consequences of an ecological restoration project | Shawnee NF site

BLM releases Las Vegas and Pahrump Field Offices Draft Resource Management Plan (RMP)/DEIS for the Southern Nevada District Office, Las Vegas and Pahrump Field Offices | More here

NPS says EA, rather than an EIS, is the appropriate environmental documentation for the general management plan for Sand Creek Massacre National Historic Site | More here

NPS releases FEIS for the Dyke Marsh restoration and long-term management plan at the George Washington Memorial Parkway, Virginia  | More here

Thursday, Oct. 9

FWS proposes to list Trichomanes punctatum ssp. floridanum (Florida bristle fern), a plant subspecies from Miami-Dade and Sumter counties in Florida, as an endangered species | Docket will be here

Aquatic Nuisance Species (ANS) Task Force to meet Nov. 5-6 in Falls Church, Va.

BLM Tucson Field Office to prepare a Travel Management Plan (TMP) concurrent with the preparation of a Resource Management Plan (RMP) and associated EIS for the San Pedro Riparian National Conservation Area

Guam Department of Agriculture Division of Aquatic and Wildlife Resources (DAWR), 163 Dairy Road, Mangilao, Guam 96913, has applied in due form for a permit to take green (Chelonia mydas) and hawksbill (Eretmochelys imbricata) sea turtles for purposes of scientific research

Wednesday, Oct. 8

NMFS, skates conservation: The North Pacific Fishery Management Council has submitted Amendment 104 to the Fishery Management Plan for Groundfish of the Bering Sea and Aleutian Islands Management Area. If approved, Amendment 104 to the FMP would designate six areas of skate egg concentration as Habitat Areas of Particular Concern. Designating the six areas of skate egg concentration as HAPC in the Bering Sea and Aleutian Islands Management Area (BSAI) would highlight the importance of this essential fish habitat for conservation.

NMFS grants major permit amendment to Aleut Community of St. Paul Island, Tribal Government, Ecosystem Conservation Office.

NMFS receives application from the Partnership for Interdisciplinary Study of Coastal Oceans (PISCO) at the University of California (UC) Santa Cruz for an Incidental Harassment Authorization (IHA) to take marine mammals, by harassment, incidental to rocky intertidal monitoring surveys.

NMFS is considering the adoption of a new competitive, merit-based, financial assistance program supporting research on Alaska pinniped populations

Tuesday, Oct. 7

FWS proposes to list the West Coast Distinct Population Segment of fisher (Pekania pennanti), a mustelid species from California, Oregon, and Washington, as a threatened species

FWS proposes to list the black pinesnake (Pituophis melanoleucus lodingi), a subspecies currently known from Alabama and Mississippi, as a threatened species

FHwA rescinds notice to prepare EIS for a proposed construction project for the reconstruction of NY 112 from the Long Island Expressway, I-495 North Service Road to NY 25 in Suffolk County, New York

BLM's Ridgecrest, Calif., and Bakersfield, Calif., field offices will prepare Resource Management Plan (RMP) amendments with an associated Environmental Assessment (EA). Scoping process begins to solicit public comments and identify issues.

Monday, Oct. 6

FWS receives endangered species permit applications

FWS issues endangered species and marine mammal permits

FHwA and FTA issue final rule to amend joint procedures that implement NEPA by adding new categorical exclusions (CE) for FHWA and FTA; allowing State departments of transportation (State DOT) to process certain CEs without FHWA’s detailed project-by-project review and approval as long as the action meets specific constraints; and adding a new section on programmatic agreements between FHWA and State DOTs that allow State DOTs to apply FHWA CEs on FHWA’s behalf, as described in section 1318 of the Moving Ahead for Progress in the 21st Century Act (MAP-21). | Rulemaking docket

FHwA, TxDOT and and the Lone Star Rail District (LSRD) will prepare an EIS for a proposed transportation project to construct and operate a regional passenger rail service system along the IH-35 corridor connecting the greater Austin and San Antonio metropolitan areas

NMFS receives revised application from Excelerate Energy, L.P. and Tetra Tech, Inc., on behalf of the Northeast Gateway® Energy Bridge™, L.P. (NEG) and Algonquin Gas Transmission, L.L.C., for authorization under the MMPA to take marine mammals, by harassment, incidental to operating, maintaining, and repairing a liquefied natural gas (LNG) port and the Algonquin Pipeline Lateral (Pipeline Lateral) facilities by NEG and Algonquin, in Massachusetts Bay, with changes to the proposed monitoring measures only. (North Atlantic right whale, humpback whale, fin whale, sei whale, minke whale, long-finned pilot whale, Atlantic white-sided dolphin, bottlenose dolphin, short-beaked common dolphin, killer whale, Risso’s dolphin, harbor porpoise, harbor seal, and gray seal)

FS to prepare EIS on effects of commercial and non-commercial vegetation management activities, prescribed burning, watershed and recreation improvement activities, and granting road access to private timber lands (Kootenai National Forest; Lincoln County; Montana) | Lower Yaak, O’Brien, Sheep Project EIS

Friday, Oct. 3

FWS lists western distinct population segment (DPS) of the yellow-billed cuckoo as threatened

FWS asks for comment on applications for recovery permits to conduct activities with the purpose of enhancing the survival of endangered species.

Walrus Protection: NMFS proposes to implement Amendment 107 to the Fishery Management Plan for Groundfish of the Bering Sea and Aleutian Islands Management Area. If approved, Amendment 107 would establish seasonal transit areas for vessels designated on Federal Fisheries Permits (FFPs) through Walrus Protection Areas in northern Bristol Bay, AK

BLM Alaska State Office will hold an oil and gas lease sale bid opening for tracts in the National Petroleum Reserve-Alaska.

Corps: Draft Supplemental EIS has been prepared jointly with the Federal Highway Administration (FHwA) and in cooperation with the Virginia
Department of Transportation for the Route 460 Location Study | http://www.route460project.org/

Thursday, Oct. 2

Defense Department announces open meeting (10/22), in Arlington, Va., of the Strategic Environmental Research and Development Program, Scientific Advisory Board. Agenda includes "Conserving Threatened Plants in a Non-stationary World: A Predictive Framework for Assessing Risks and Guiding Management" and "Empirical Dynamics: A New Paradigm for Understanding and Managing Species and Ecosystems in a Non-Stationary Nonlinear World"

FHwA reopens survey on Projects of National and Regional Significance (PNRS) required by section 1120 of the Moving Ahead for Progress in the 21st Century Act (MAP-21)

FERC will prepare an EA on the environmental impacts of the Cameron Access Project involving construction and operation of facilities by Columbia Gulf Transmission, LLC in Jefferson Davis, Calcasieu, and Cameron Parishes, Louisiana

Wednesday, Oct. 1

FWS says listing the yellow-billed loon is not warranted | Docket (which includes Species Status Assessment)

FWS proposes to list 21 plant and animal species from the Mariana Islands (the U.S. Territory of Guam and the U.S. Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands) as endangered species. FWS also proposes to list two plant species from the Mariana Islands in the U.S. Territory of Guam and the U.S. Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands as threatened species

FWS says listing Rio Grande cutthroat trout is not warranted; "therefore, we are removing this species from our candidate list."

BuRec reopens public comment period for the proposed information collection: Collection and Compilation of Water Pipeline Field Performance Data.

Trinity Adaptive Management Working Group to meet Oct. 30-31

Pecos District Resource Advisory Council Meeting, New Mexico, to meet Nov. 12

NOAA announces appointment of members who will serve on the NOAA Performance Review Board

Takes of Marine Mammals Incidental to Specified Activities:
Takes of Marine Mammals Incidental to Specified Activities; Taking Marine Mammals Incidental to a Marina Reconstruction Project
Pages 59228-59238 [FR DOC# 2014-23338]
Takes of Marine Mammals Incidental to Specified Activities; Taking Marine Mammals Incidental to a Pier Maintenance Project
Pages 59238-59247 [FR DOC# 2014-23339]
Takes of Marine Mammals Incidental to Specified Activities; Taking Marine Mammals Incidental to Breakwater Replacement Project in Eastport, Maine
Pages 59247-59253 [FR DOC# 2014-23340]

Tuesday, Sept. 30

BLM proposes amending existing regulations to facilitate responsible solar and wind energy development and to receive fair market value for such development. The proposed rule would promote the use of preferred areas for solar and wind energy development and establish competitive processes, terms, and conditions (including rental and bonding requirements) for solar and wind energy development rights-of-way both inside and outside these preferred areas.

FWS asks for comments on applications from the Coast Guard for authorization to take small numbers of marine mammals by harassment incidental to the replacement of pier piles and the potable water line at USCG Station Monterey in Monterey County, California

NMFS adopts final recovery plan for the Southern Oregon/Northern California Coast coho salmon (Oncorhynchus kisutch) Evolutionarily Significant Unit. This ESU includes all naturally spawned coho salmon populations between Punta Gorda, California and Cape Blanco, Oregon, as well as coho salmon produced by three artificial propagation programs: The Cole Rivers Hatchery, Trinity River Hatchery, and Iron Gate Hatchery.

NMFS issues Incidental Harassment Authorization (IHA) to ExxonMobil to take marine mammals, by Level B harassment only, incidental to installing six conductor pipes via hydraulic hammer driving at the Harmony Platform, Santa Ynez Production Unit, located in the Santa Barbara Channel offshore of California. | Plan is here  (or at least the draft; final may take a day or two)

Office of Surface Mining Reclamation and Enforcement plans to grant funds to eligible applicants for purposes authorized under the Abandoned Mine Land (AML) Reclamation Program. Additionally we are notifying the public that we intend to grant funds to eligible applicants for regulating coal mining within their jurisdictional borders. We will award these grants during fiscal year 2015.

APHIS will keep the comment period open until Oct. 10 on a DEIS examining the "potential approval of petitions seeking a determination of nonregulated status of cultivars of dicamba herbicide resistant soybeans and cotton produced by the Monsanto Company." | Docket

Federal Transit Administration (FTA) and the Northern Indiana Commuter Transportation District (NICTD), as the Local Project Sponsor, will prepare EIS for the West Lake Corridor Project in Lake County, Indiana and Cook County, Illinois. The project is an approximately 9-mile proposed southern branch extension of NICTD’s existing South Shore Line (SSL) between Dyer and Hammond, Indiana

BuRec and the San Luis & Delta-Mendota Water Authority have released for public review and comment the Long-Term Water Transfers draft EIS/R addressing water transfers to Central Valley Project (CVP) contractors south of the Delta and in the San Francisco Bay area from CVP and non-CVP sources from north of the Delta using Delta pumps (both CVP  and State Water Project facilities). Water transfers would occur through various methods such as groundwater substitution, cropland idling, reservoir release, and conservation, and would include individual and multiyear transfers from 2015 through 2024 | More here   (though no draft EIS/R yet -- Sept. 29)

Monday, Sept. 29

Pacific Fishery Management Council's Salmon Advisory Subpanel and ad hoc Lower Columbia River Natural Coho Workgroup will hold a public work session in Portland, OR, Oct. 15

FWS sends ICR to OMB for review (Coastal Impact Assistance Program)

NPS releases FEIS for the general management plan for Big Thicket National Preserve | Plan is here

NPS releases FEIS for the general management plan for Lake Meredith National Recreation Area and Alibates Flint Quarries National Monument | Lake Meredith documents

Friday, Sept. 26

FWS sends Information Collection Request (ICR) to OMB for review and approval on post-delisting monitoring of peregrine falcon

BLM, FWS have partnered with the California Energy Commission (CEC) and the California Department of Fish and Wildlife (CDFW) (collectively, the Agencies) to prepare the Draft Desert Renewable Energy Conservation Plan (DRECP) and Draft EIS/EIR | Website

FWS receives endangered species permit applications (international)

FWS issues marine mammal permits

NMFS finds that listing of humphead wrasse (Cheilinus undulatus) is not warranted | Page w/ info, including petition

EPA receives EIS's for comment   |  Comment letters

FWS final rule prescribes the hunting seasons, hours, areas, and daily bag and possession limits for general waterfowl seasons and those early seasons for which States previously deferred selection.

NPS releases Final Shoreline Restoration Management Plan and Environmental Impact Statement (SRMP), Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore, Indiana.

Susquehanna River Basin Commission proposes to clarify the water uses involved in hydrocarbon development that are subject to the consumptive use regulations.

Thursday, Sept. 25

NMFS issues an Incidental Harassment Authorization to Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory, a component of Columbia University, in collaboration with the National Science Foundation, to take marine mammals, by harassment, incidental to conducting a marine geophysical survey in the northwest Atlantic Ocean off the North Carolina coast from September 15 through October 31, 2014

NPS releases ROD for the FEIS for the Tuolumne River Comprehensive Management Plan.

EPA finalizes withdrawal of federal water quality standards applicable to waters of the state of Florida now that Florida has adopted and EPA has approved relevant state standards. On December 6, 2010, EPA published a rule finalizing numeric nutrient standards for Florida's lakes, springs, and flowing waters outside of the South Florida Nutrient Watershed Region. The EPA established these water quality standards to protect Florida's Class I and III freshwaters from nitrogen and phosphorus pollution. On November 30, 2012, June 27, 2013, and September 26, 2013, EPA approved numeric nutrient standards adopted by the state of Florida for certain waters in the state | Docket

Wednesday, Sept. 24

FWS finds that listing of Eriogonum diatomaceum (Churchill Narrows buckwheat) and Eriogonum corymbosum var. nilesii (Las Vegas buckwheat) as endangered or threatened is not warranted

FWS prescribes special late-season migratory bird hunting regulations for certain tribes on Federal Indian reservations, off-reservation trust lands, and ceded lands

EPA releases draft human health and ecological risk assessments for the registration review of 2-EEEBC (debacarb) and isoxaben. Public comment period opened.

DOJ announces proposed Consent Decree to "resolve violations for certain provisions of the Act and the NPDES General Permit for municipal storm water discharges at Honolulu and Kalaeloa Barbers Point Harbors. The proposed Consent Decree requires Defendant to implement a comprehensive storm water management plan over the life of the Consent Decree and pay a civil penalty of $1.2 million."

DOJ announces proposed consent decree  to resolve alleged violations arising from Sims Metal Management's industrial activities at the Port of Redwood City in Redwood City, California. The U.S. "alleges that Sims allowed metal and other material to fall from its ship-loading conveyor directly into Redwood Creek."

NMFS issues Incidental Harassment Authorization (IHA) to the United States Coast Guard (USCG) to take, by harassment, small numbers of seven species of marine mammals incidental to pile driving associated with the USCG's Station Monterey waterfront repair project in Monterey, California, between June 1, 2015, through September 1, 2015.

NMFS extends public comment period for the amended permit to authorize the incidental, but not intentional, take of two stocks of marine mammals listed as threatened or endangered under the Endangered Species Act (ESA), under the Marine Mammal Protection Act (MMPA), by the California (CA) thresher shark/ swordfish drift gillnet fishery (>14 in mesh) and the Washington (WA)/ Oregon (OR)/CA sablefish pot fishery

Tuesday, Sept. 23

FWS proposes removing Delmarva fox squirrel for list of endangered species

FWS reopens public comment period on the October 24, 2013, proposal to designate critical habitat for the Dakota skipper (Hesperia dacotae) and Poweshiek skipperling (Oarisma poweshiek) and proposed 4(d) rule for the Dakota skipper. "We are also revising our proposed critical habitat rule to add two proposed critical habitat units for the Poweshiek skipperling in Minnesota, remove two proposed units (one for the Dakota skipper in Minnesota and one for the Poweshiek skipperling in North Dakota), and revise the boundaries of seven Poweshiek skipperling units and five Dakota skipper units in Minnesota."

FWS concludes that listing the Tucson shovel-nosed snake (Chionactis occipitalis klauberi) is not warranted

FWS prescribes final late-season frameworks from which States may select season dates, limits, and other options for the 2014–15 migratory bird hunting seasons

FWS begins 5-year status reviews of 27 species in Southeast Advisory Council on Wildlife Trafficking to meet Oct. 17 in D.C.

BLM Idaho State Office to prepare a supplemental EIS analyzing the potential impacts of approving a right-of-way (ROW) application for Segments 8 and 9 of the Gateway West 500-kilovolt (kV) Transmission Line Project and possible land use plan amendments.

EPA extends deadline to Feb. 4, 2015, to either withdraw the Proposed Determination to restrict the use of certain waters in the South Fork Koktuli River, North Fork Koktuli River, and Upper Talarik Creek watersheds in Southwest Alaska as disposal sites for dredged or fill material associated with mining the Pebble deposit, a copper-, gold-, and molybdenum-bearing ore body, or to prepare the Recommended Determination.

EPA receives EIS’s for review

BuRec releases Final Resource Management Plan and EIS for the Contra Loma Reservoir and Recreation Area | Doc will be available here

FHwA rescinds DEIS for proposed I-26 Connector from I-40 to US 19-23-70 in Buncombe County, North Carolina. A notice of availability for the DEIS was published in the Federal Register on April 11, 2008. FHwA and NCDOT plan to prepare a new Draft EIS for the proposed project.

NOAA: National Ocean Service's Estuarine Reserves Division, Office of Ocean and Coastal Resource Management, approves the Waquoit Bay, Massachusetts National Estuarine Research Reserve Management Plan revision.

Monday, Sept. 22

FWS extends until Nov. 6 the comment period on a draft policy on crediting voluntary conservation actions taken for unlisted species | Docket

Interior Dept. and the Central Utah Water Conservancy District, as joint leads, are evaluating the impacts of a proposed replacement of the Olmsted Hydroelectric Power Plant, and have prepared an associated Draft Environmental Assessment for public review. | More

The Assistant Secretary of the Interior for Land and Minerals Management on behalf of the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) proposes to withdraw approximately 2,560 acres of public lands in Yuma County, Arizona, from location or entry under the United States mining laws, to protect and preserve for a 20-year period, the Agua Caliente Solar Energy Zone (SEZ). The lands will remain open to leasing under the mineral and geothermal leasing laws, and disposal under the Materials Act of 1947. Public meetings must be requested.

NMFS proposes regulations to implement Amendment 18 to the Pacific Coast Salmon Fishery Management Plan for Commercial and Recreational Salmon Fisheries off the Coasts of Washington, Oregon, and California (FMP). Amendment 18, which was transmitted by the Pacific Fishery Management Council (PFMC) on June 10, 2014, revises the description and identification of essential fish habitat (EFH) for Pacific salmon managed under the FMP, designates habitat areas of particular concern (HAPCs), updates the current information on fishing activities, and updates the list of non-fishing related activities that may adversely affect EFH and potential conservation and enhancement measures to minimize those effects | More

NMFS Pacific Islands Regional Office, 1601 Kapiolani Boulevard, Suite 1110, Honolulu, HI 96814 [Responsible Party: Michael Tosatto], has applied in due form for a permit to take hawksbill (Eretmochelys imbricata), olive ridley (Lepidochelys olivacea), leatherback (Dermochelys imbricata), loggerhead (Caretta caretta) and green (Chelonia mydas) sea turtles for purposes of scientific research.

John Calambokidis, Cascadia Research Collective, Waterstreet Building, 218\1/2\ West Fourth Avenue, Olympia, WA 89501, has been issued a minor amendment to Scientific Research Permit No. 16111-01 ( cetaceans and pinnipeds in the eastern North Pacific, from Central America to Alaska) APHIS:

"We are advising the public of our determination that three varieties of herbicide resistant corn and soybeans produced by Dow AgroSciences LLC are no longer considered regulated articles under our regulations governing the introduction of certain genetically engineered organism." | Docket

Forest Service: National Advisory Committee for Implementation of the National Forest System Land Management Planning Rule Committee will meet in Arlington, VA, Sept. 30-Oct. 2. Attendees may also participate via webinar and conference call | Link

Rural Utilities Service issues Record of Decision related to providing financial assistance for Basin Electric Power Cooperative's proposed Antelope Valley Station (AVS) to Neset 345-kV Transmission Project in North Dakota | Project website

Friday, Sept. 19

FAA releases, asks for comments on, the Draft Environmental Assessment for the Kodiak Launch Complex Launch Pad 3

Thursday, Sept. 18

FWS says listing Eriogonum kelloggii (Red Mountain buckwheat) and Sedum eastwoodiae (Red Mountain stonecrop) is not warranted at this time.  Species were first identified as candidates in 1975 and 1980, respectively. They occur in Mendocino County, California.

“[T]he location, distribution, and abundance of E. kelloggii and S. eastwoodiae populations coincide with their known historical distribution and have remained stable relative to their distribution over at least the past 30 years. Both species have a relatively long lifespan, and thus their stable distribution and the persistence of the populations over time (1975–2014) allow us to predict to some degree their persistence into the future. We have determined that the risk of threats acting on these populations are minimal: the fire frequency for the area is low (2 recorded and one unrecorded fire over the past 90 years) and the impacts of those fires have been minimal due to the open nature of the habitat being less prone to intense habitat destruction (Service 2014, pp. 23–25). OHV use has decreased due to the designation of the area as ACEC and Wilderness. Mining interests have also greatly diminished due to numerous factors and no existing claims are currently active or anticipated in the future.”

Listing S. georgianum (Georgia aster) is not warranted, FWS concludes

FWS releases CCP and EA/FONSI for the Rose Atoll National Wildlife Refuge

FWS releases CCP and EA/FONSI  for the Sonny Bono Salton Sea National Wildlife Refuge (NWR) Complex, which includes the Sonny Bono Salton Sea NWR and Coachella Valley NWR.

NMFS issues Incidental Harassment Authorization (IHA) to Glacier Bay National Park to take marine mammals, by Level B harassment, incidental to conducting seabird monitoring and research activities in Alaska, September 2014.

APHIS releases EA on proposed release of Diaphorencyrtus aligarhensis for the biological control of the Asian citrus psyllid, Diaphorina citri, in the contiguous United States.

Forest Service is preparing the El Yunque National Forest’s revised land management plan (forest plan) and will also prepare an EIS for this revised forest plan


Wednesday, Sept. 17

FWS withdraws proposal to remove Valley elderberry longhorn beetle from threatened species list | Docket

NMFS receives application from the San Francisco Bay Area Water Emergency Transportation Authority (WETA) for an Incidental Harassment Authorization (IHA) to take marine mammals incidental to a proposed Central Bay Operations and Maintenance Facility Project

FHwA, on behalf of Caltrans, says judicial review of federal agency actions on the proposed highway project, replacement of the 5th Street Bridge ver the Feather River and improvement of approach roadways to the bridge, in the counties of Sutter and Yuba, California, will be barred unless the claim is filed on or before 150 days after publication of notice.

Tuesday, Sept. 16

FWS submits ICR to OMB for approval, re: international grant programs

EPA announces 4-day meeting of the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act Scientific Advisory Panel (FIFRA SAP) to consider and review Integrated Endocrine Activity and Exposure-based Prioritization and Screening.

FHwA, FTA, FRA  issue final rule amending the application requirements for the Surface Transportation Project Delivery Program. Includes language on environmental review. “Nothing in NEPA, other environmental laws, or this Program authorizes the delegation or reassignment of environmental review responsibilities from the State to other entities. However, this does not prohibit other entities, like transit agencies that are not under the authority of the Governor, to develop studies, comment on environmental documents, and provide information that would support a proposed project and assist the responsible agency to perform its assumed environmental review responsibilities. For highway and public transportation projects, public agencies that are project sponsors may prepare environmental documents in accordance with 23 U.S.C. 139(c)(3). In fact, a project sponsor that is a State or local governmental entity receiving funds under 23 U.S.C. or 49 U.S.C. chapter 53 must be a joint lead agency for the NEPA process under 23 U.S.C. 139(c)(3), and would need to work with the State agency that has assumed the environmental review responsibilities for the transit project under this program.”

Mid-Atlantic Fishery Management Council, in ccooperation with NMFS and the Atlantic States Marine Fisheries Commission, will prepare an amendment to the Summer Flounder, Scup, and Black Sea Bass Fishery Management Plan and prepare an EIS to analyze the impacts of any proposed management measures.

Monday, Sept. 15

FWS receives T&E species permit applications (Southwest)

NMFS receives request from the Navy for authorization to take marine mammals incidental to conducting Joint Logistics Over-the-Shore (JLOTS) training activities in Virginia and North Carolina, from June 2015 through June 2020.| Permit info page

NMFS proposes rule to require use of a NMFS-approved vessel monitoring system (VMS) and institute a 48-hour pre- trip call-in notification requirement for West Coast Large-mesh Swordfish Drift Gillnet (DGN) vessel owners. The DGN fishery operates under authority of the Federal Fishery Management Plan for U.S. West Coast Fisheries for Highly Migratory Species (HMS FMP). The VMS requirement is a mandatory term and condition in the 2013 Endangered Species Act Section 7 biological opinion that authorizes the DGN fishery to take certain threatened and endangered species incidental to fishing operations.| Docket

Friday, Sept. 12

FWS lists Arabis georgiana (Georgia rockcress), a plant species in Georgia and Alabama, as threatened

  • FWS also designates critical habitat: 732 acres of riparian, river bluff habitat in Georgia, including parts of Gordon, Floyd, Harris, Muscogee, and Clay counties, and in Alabama, including parts of Bibb, Dallas, Elmore, Monroe, Sumter, and Wilcox counties

FWS designates revised critical habitat for the contiguous United States distinct population segment of the Canada lynx (Lynx canadensis), and revises the boundary of the Canada lynx DPS.

More from FWS:

Financial Assistance: Wildlife Restoration, Sport Fish Restoration, Hunter Education and Safety; Correction

Endangered species permit applications
received: Requests to import sport-hunted trophies (one per applicant) of one male bontebok (Damaliscus pygargus pygargus) culled from a captive herd maintained under the management program of the Republic of South Africa.

Endangered species recovery permit application received, to conduct activities with the purpose of enhancing the survival of endangered species.

Permits issued: Endangered Species and Endangered Species; Marine Mammals

Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposals, Submissions, and Approvals: North American Woodcock Singing Ground Survey

EPA receives EIS’s for comment | More

Thursday, Sept. 11

Army Corps of Engineers: North Carolina DOT will prepare an EIS on improvements to the transportation system starting near the intersection of US 70 and NC 903 near the Town of LaGrange, Lenoir County, heading east near the intersection of US 70 and Old US 70 (NCSR-1005) near the Town of Dover, Jones County, NC.

Army releases DEIS for the proposed update of the Real Property Master Plan (RPMP) for Fort Belvoir, Va., which includes proposed short-term projects and long-term development.| DEIS is here

FWS authorized surveying for New Mexico meadow jumping mouse during July and August.

FWS requests comment on an incidental take permit application for take of the federally listed American burying beetle resulting from activities associated with the construction, operation, maintenance, repair, and decommissioning of oil and gas pipelines and related well field activities in Oklahoma

Forest Service extends comment period for 60 days on a notice of intent to prepare an EIS on the Forest Plan Revision for the Nez Perce-Clearwater National Forests

Enforcement: U.S. announces proposed consent decree with Trans Energy to resolve CWA violations | FR notice | Case: U.S. and state of West Virginia, et al. v. Trans Energy Inc., 14-117-FPS, W.V.N.D.) | Press release

Wednesday, Sept. 10

NMFS to list 20 coral species as threatened | NMFS page with info

FWS releases technical/agency draft recovery plan for the endangered dusky gopher frog | Plan

FHwA, FTA: Notice of Proposed Rulemaking “provides interested parties with the opportunity to comment on proposed revisions to the Federal Highway Administration and the Federal Transit Administration’s statewide and nonmetropolitan and metropolitan transportation planning regulations related to the use of and reliance on planning products developed during the transportation planning process for project development and the environmental review process.”

Tuesday, Sept. 9

FWS lists Agave eggersiana (no common name) and Gonocalyx concolor (no common name) as endangered, and Varronia rupicola (no common name) as threatened. All three plants are endemic to the Caribbean.

  • FWS designates approximately 50.6 acres of critical habitat for A. eggersiana in St. Croix, U.S. Virgin Islands (USVI), 198 ac for G. concolor in Puerto Rico, and 6,547 ac for V. rupicola in southern Puerto Rico and Vieques Island.

FWS reopens public comment period for 14 days on proposal to designate critical habitat for Oregon spotted frog

FWS submits ICR to OMB for approval. Purposes of the information c0llection are to:

  • Obtain expert opinions on the prioritization of fish monitoring and research within the San Francisco Estuary and its watershed
  • Explain the levels of scientific understanding or uncertainty associated with the ecology and viability of high-priority fish taxa; and
  • Identify the environmental drivers that influence fish populations.

FWS releases CCP’s/EA’s on Big Muddy National Fish and Wildlife Refuge and National Elk Refuge, Jackson, WY

NMFS will put public meetings on Steller sea lion critical habitat proposal on the Web

NMFS proposes rule to implement a program in the Pacific Coast Groundfish Fishery “specifically designed to minimize the take of ESA-listed short-tailed albatross (Phoebastria albatrus)”

Monday, Sept. 8

BLM Medford District Office, Medford, Ore., intends to prepare a Resource Management Plan (RMP) amendment with an
associated Environmental Assessment (EA) for the Medford RMP

FERC releases EA’s on Columbia Gas Transmission’s East Side Expansion Project, Equitrans’ planned Ohio Valley Connector Project, and Southern Natural Gas Co.’s North Main Lines Relocation Project

The Regulatory Flexibility Act (RFA) requires that NMFS periodically review existing regulations that have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small entities, such as small businesses, small organizations, and small governmental jurisdictions. This plan describes how NMFS will perform this review and describes the regulations that are
being proposed for review during the current review cycle.

NMFS will conduct 5-year review of the southern right whale (Eubalaena australis) and sperm whale (Physeter macrocephalus)

NMFS has issued an Incidental Harassment Authorization (IHA) to Deepwater Wind Block Island, LLC (DWBI) to take marine mammals, by harassment, incidental to construction of the Block Island Wind Farm. (Atlantic white-sided dolphin, Short-beaked common dolphin, Harbor porpoise, Minke whale, Fin whale, Humpback whale, North Atlantic right whale, Gray seal, and Harbor seal)

Sanctuary System Business Advisory Council to meet Sept. 24

FHwA sets 150-day limit on judicial review of project to build one part-time high occupancy vehicle (HOV) lane in each direction on U.S. 101 for approximately 10 miles between the City of Carpinteria and Cabrillo Boulevard in the City of Santa Barbara

Friday, Sept. 5

FWS proposes migratory bird subsistence harvest regulations in Alaska for the 2015 season

NMFS releases draft recovery plan for elkhorn coral (Acropora palmata) and staghorn coral (Acropora cervicornis) | Plan

NOAA expands the boundary of Thunder Bay National Marine Sanctuary

NMFS receives request from the Navy for authorization to take marine mammals incidental to construction activities as part of a pier replacement project in San Diego Bay at Naval Base Point Loma in San Diego, CA

NMFS receives request from the Navy for authorization to take marine mammals incidental to the training activities conducted in the Gulf of Alaska Temporary Maritime Activities Area (GOA TMAA) from April 2016 through April 2021

Washington Department of Natural Resources applies to FWS and NMFS for 50-year permits covering incidental take of 29 listed species caused by WDNR authorizations of shellfish aquaculture, log booming and storage, and overwater structures undertaken by individuals, businesses, and governmental agencies on 2.6 million acres of State-owned aquatic lands, including marine and freshwater tidelands, shorelands, and bedlands | HCP is here

Federal Railroad Administration and the Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT) will prepare EIS
on impacts of constructing and operating enhanced intercity passenger rail services between Dallas and Fort Worth

Thursday, Sept. 4

FWS adds to list of endangered and threatened wildlife five species of foreign sturgeon (Adriatic sturgeon (Acipenser naccarii), Chinese sturgeon (A. sinensis), European sturgeon (A. sturio), Kaluga sturgeon (Huso dauricus), and Sakhalin sturgeon (A. mikadoi)); four distinct population segments (DPSs) of scalloped hammerhead shark (Sphyrna lewini) (Central and Southwest Atlantic (Central & SW Atlantic) DPS, Eastern Atlantic DPS, Indo-West Pacific DPS, and Eastern Pacific DPS); and a nonessential experimental population of Upper Columbia River spring-run Chinook salmon (Oncorhynchus tshawytscha). These amendments are based on previously published determinations by the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Commerce, which has jurisdiction for these species.

FWS lists as endangered Brickellia mosieri (Florida brickell-bush) and Linum carteri var. carteri (Carter’s small flowered flax), two plants from Miami-Dade County, Florida

FWS receives applications for enhancement of survival permits (EOS permits) under section 10(a)(1)(A) of the ESA, pursuant to the Greater Sage-grouse Umbrella Candidate Conservation Agreement with Assurances for Wyoming Ranch Management | More

FWS extends to Sept. 18 the public review and comment period for the draft environmental assessment for a draft annual funding agreement at the National Bison Range Complex | More

FWS releases draft revised recovery plan for bull trout | Recovery plans, by date

NPS releases ROD for the General Management Plan (GMP) for Fort Matanzas National Monument

Wednesday, Sept. 3

NMFS issues positive 90-day finding on orange clownfish (Amphiprion percula), negative finding on six damselfishes: Hawaiian dascyllus (Dascyllus albisella), blue-eyed damselfish (Plectroglyphidodon johnstonianus), black-axil chromis (Chromis atripectoralis), blue-green damselfish (Chromis viridis), reticulated damselfish (Dascyllus reticulatus), and blackbar devil or Dick’s damselfish (Plectroglyphidodon dickii). Another of our regional offices is leading the response to the petition to list the yellowtail damselfish (Microspathodon chrysurus) and a separate 90-day finding will be issued later for this species. | Petition

NMFS: Free Atlantic Shark Identification Workshops and Protected Species Safe Handling, Release, and Identification Workshops will be held in October, November, and December of 2014. Certain fishermen and shark dealers are required to attend a workshop to meet regulatory requirements and to maintain valid permits. Specifically, the Atlantic Shark Identification Workshop is mandatory for all federally permitted Atlantic shark dealers.

NMFS extends the comment period for 30 days on petition to designate the Sakhalin Bay-Amur River stock of beluga whales (Delphinapterus leucas) as a depleted stock under the MMPA

The President’s Council of Advisors on Science and Technology (PCAST) is scheduled to meet in open session on September 19, 2014 from 9 a.m. to noon.

FWS rule prescribes special early-season migratory bird hunting regulations for certain tribes on Federal Indian reservations, off-reservation trust lands, and ceded lands.

Tuesday, Sept. 2

FWS receives applications to import sport-hunted trophies and other samples from endangered species

FWS issues endangered species, marine mammal permits

FWS reopens public review and comment period for the Draft Comprehensive Conservation Plan (CCP) and EA for the San Diego National Wildlife Refuge | More

NMFS says listing of Nassau grouper is warranted. “We have determined that the Nassau grouper meets the definition of a threatened species. While the species still occupies its historical range, spawning aggregations have been reduced in size and number due to fishing pressure. The lack of adequate management measures to protect these aggregations increases the extinction risk of Nassau grouper. Based on these considerations, described in more detail in this proposed rule, we conclude that the Nassau grouper is not currently in danger of extinction throughout all or a significant portion of its range, but is likely to become so within the foreseeable future.” | Petition, which was filed by WildEarth Guardians, can be downloaded here

NMFS issues an IHA to USGS’s Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory of Columbia University, and the National Science Foundation to take marine mammals, by Level B harassment, incidental to conducting a marine geophysical (seismic) survey in the Atlantic Ocean off the Eastern Seaboard, August to September 2014 and April to August 2015

Friday, August 29

FWS lists Oregon spotted frog (Rana pretiosa) as threatened. The frog occurs in Washington, Oregon, California and British Columbia | Species info | Listing docket

FWS receives applications from Apache Alaska Corporation, SAExploration Inc., and BlueCrest Energy Inc., formerly Buccaneer Alaska Operations, LLC, for authorization under the MMPA, to take small numbers of northern sea otters from the Southcentral stock by harassment incidental to proposed oil and gas exploration activities in Cook Inlet, Alaska | IHA info

Migratory birds: FWS rule “prescribes the hunting seasons, hours, areas, and daily bag and possession limits of mourning, white-winged, and white- tipped doves; band-tailed pigeons; rails; moorhens and gallinules; woodcock; common snipe; sandhill cranes; sea ducks; early (September) waterfowl seasons; migratory game birds in Alaska, Hawaii, Puerto Rico, and the Virgin Islands; youth waterfowl day; and some extended falconry seasons. Taking of migratory birds is prohibited unless specifically provided for by annual regulations.” | FWS Migratory Birds page

NMFS issues permit to Alejandro Acevedo-Gutierrez of Western Washington University’s Department of Biology to conduct research on harbor seals (Phoca vitulina)

Forest Service to prepare EIS’s on revised forest plans for the Inyo Sequoia and Sierra National Forests

Thursday, August 28

FWS rule prescribes final early-season frameworks from which the states, Puerto Rico, and the Virgin Islands may select season dates, limits, and other options for the 2014-15 migratory bird hunting seasons

FWS releases CCP/EA for Sam D. Hamilton Noxubee National Wildlife Refuge in Oktibbeha, Winston, and Noxubee Counties, Mississippi | More (go to “draft documents” when you get there)

FWS Rocky Mountain-Prairie region issues endangered species permits (table included of permits issued by Region 6 in first half of this year)

FWS receives recovery permit applications from FWS (New Mexico Meadow Jumping Mouse (Zapus hudsonius luteus) and lesser prairie-chicken (Tympanuchus pallidicinctus) and Defenders of Wildlife (black-footed ferret; Mustela nigripes)

FWS receives recovery permit applications from Fort Collins, Colo. (black-footed ferret) and Loveland Living Planet Aquarium, Draper, Utah (Kemp’s Ridley sea turtle)

Technical correction made to loggerhead sea turtle critical habitat designation rule (doesn’t affect area of CH)

APHIS releases EA for the field release of diamondback moths which have been genetically engineered for repressible female lethality and to express red fluorescence as a marker | Docket

APHIS makes preliminary Finding of No Significant Impact and Preliminary Decision for an Extension of a Determination of Nonregulated Status of Soybean Genetically Engineered for Resistance to fall Armyworm | More at docket

NOAA Office of Ocean and Coastal Resource Management corrects July 25 notice re: dates for public meeting and comment period on evaluations of Chesapeake Bay National Estuarine Research Reserve in Virginia, Waquoit Bay National Estuarine Research Reserve, and Indiana Coastal Management Program

NMFS Southeast Region, in collaboration with the South Atlantic Fishery Management Council, is preparing an EA for the Generic Accountability Measure (AM) and Dolphin Allocation Amendment

NMFS issues permit to Alaska Department of Fish and Game (ADF&G), Division of Wildlife Conservation, Juneau, AK, (Principal Investigator: Michael Rehberg), to conduct research on Steller sea lions (Eumetopias jubatus), within incidental disturbance of several pinniped species | Permit info (for all permits) here

NMFS issues major amendment to Permit No. 14610-02 to the Alaska Department of Fish and Game (ADFG), Division of Wildlife Conservation, Juneau, AK (Principal Investigator: Lori Quakenbush) (Whales)

NMFS issues an Incidental Harassment Authorization (IHA) to Deepwater Wind Block Island Transmission, LLC to take marine mammals, by harassment, incidental to construction of the Block Island Transmission System.

Wednesday, August 27

FWS: Wildlife and Hunting Heritage Conservation Council to meet Sept. 9-10 in D.C.

Tuesday, August 26

FWS removes least chub from list of candidate species. Service says a Candidate Conservation Agreement has “resulted in the discovery of two additional wild populations, acquisition and protection of occupied habitat, fencing of sensitive habitat to limit grazing, removal of grazing at select sites, an agreement with the mosquito abatement districts to limit the introduction and use of western mosquitofish (Gambusia affinis), introductions of least chub into unoccupied suitable habitat, development of memoranda of understanding (MOUs) with grazing operators on private lands, restoration of occupied habitat, and groundwater monitoring near natural populations.” | Docket should be here tomorrow

FWS designates critical habitat for Diplacus vandenbergensis (Vandenberg monkeyflower), a plant species from Santa Barbara County, California

FWS designates critical habitat for Physaria globosa (Short’s bladderpod), Helianthus verticillatus (whorled sunflower),
and Leavenworthia crassa (fleshy-fruit gladecress) | Docket

FWS releases comprehensive conservation plan (CCP) and draft EIS for the San Luis Valley National Wildlife Refuge Complex in Alamosa, Rio Grande, and Saguache, Colorado.

NPS releases Record of Decision for the Final General Management Plan and EIS, Gateway National Recreation Area (Gateway), New Jersey and New York

Monday, August 25

NMFS publishes its proposed List of Fisheries (LOF) for 2015, as required by the Marine Mammal Protection Act (MMPA). The proposed LOF for 2015 reflects new information on interactions between commercial fisheries and marine mammals.

Council on Environmental Quality (CEQ) publishes draft guidance on when and how federal agencies can effectively use NEPA programmatic reviews | More

Friday, August 22

FWS proposes to establish the 2014-15 late-season hunting regulations for certain migratory game birds

NMFS corrects final rule to amend regulations implementing the Atlantic Large Whale Take Reduction Plan.

NMFS proposes regulations to implement decisions of the Commission for the Conservation and Management of Highly Migratory Fish Stocks in the Western and Central Pacific Ocean on fishing restrictions related to the oceanic whitetip shark (Carcharhinus longimanus), the whale shark (Rhincodon typus), and the silky shark (Carcharhinus falciformis).

EPA receives EIS’s for review

Gulf Coast Ecosystem Restoration Council is issuing a final regulation authorizing the Gulf Coast State members of the Council, or their administrative agents, and the Gulf Consortium of Florida counties to apply for grants to fund planning
activities to develop individual State Expenditure Plans (SEP) using funds up to the statutory minimum that each Gulf Coast State must receive under the Spill Impact Component of the Resources and Ecosystem Sustainability, Tourist Opportunities, and Revived Economies of the Gulf Coast States Act of 2012 (RESTORE Act).

Bureau of Indian Affairs as lead agency, with the Samish Indian Nation and the City of Anacortes, serving as cooperating
agencies, intends to file a draft environmental impact statement (DEIS) with EPA for the Samish Indian Nation Trust Acquisition and Casino Project, City of Anacortes, Skagit County, Washington

Thursday, August 21

NMFS issues four letters of authorization to the Navy “to take marine mammals by harassment incidental to their military readiness activities associated with the routine training, testing, and military operations of Surveillance Towed Array Sensor System Low Frequency Active (SURTASS LFA) sonar within the northwest Pacific Ocean and the north-central Pacific Ocean.”

FWS: Two ITP’s (golden-cheeked warbler) transferred

FERC to prepare EA on ANR compressor station project in Henry County, Indiana. “The Sulphur Springs Compression Project would provide about 133.6 million standard cubic feet of natural gas per day to ANR’s wholly owned portion of the Lebanon Lateral which connects the Glen Karn meter facilities in Darke County, Ohio to the Sulphur Springs Compressor Station.”

FERC issues EA/FONSI on Lockhart Power Company Inc.’s application for license for the Riverdale Hydroelectric Project (FERC Project No. 13590-001), located on the Enoree River, near the town of Enoree, in Spartanburg and Laurens counties, South Carolina

FERC: Notice of Revised Public Comment Meeting and Additional Public Comment Meeting on the Draft Environmental Impact Statement for the Algonquin Incremental Market Project

Wednesday, August 20

FWS declines to propose arctic grayling for listing. “The best available scientific and commercial information indicates that habitat-related threats previously identified, including habitat fragmentation, dewatering, thermal stress, entrainment, riparian habitat loss, and effects from climate change, for the Upper Missouri River DPS of Arctic grayling have been sufficiently ameliorated and that 19 of 20 populations of Arctic grayling are either stable or increasing.”

FWS to hold teleconference on Climate Adaptation Strategy | Wildlife Adaptation Strategy page

FWS says it will publish a second Federal Register notice when the draft CCP/EA for the Sam D. Hamilton Noxubee National
Wildlife Refuge in Mississippi. is ready for review. “[E]dits had not yet been completed on the draft CCP/EA, and the document is not yet ready for public review.” Original FR notice was published July 30.

USGS asks for comments on Information Collection Request related to North American Amphibian Monitoring Program

FAA releases final Environmental Assessment/FONSI for issuing an experimental permit to Space Exploration Technologies Corp. (SpaceX) for operation of the DragonFly Vehicle at the McGregor Test Site, McGregor, Texas

NPS amends special regulations for Wrangell-St. Elias National Park and Preserve “to designate trails in the portion of the Nabesna District located within the National Preserve where motor vehicles may be used off roads for recreational purposes. The rule prohibits the use of certain types of vehicles based upon size and weight, and closes certain areas in designated wilderness within the Nabesna District that are located outside of established trails and trail corridors to the use of motor vehicles for subsistence.” | Wrangell-St. Elias NP website

Tuesday, August 19

FWS issues positive 90-day finding on petition to list the island marble butterfly (Euchloe ausonides insulanus), with a
range in San Juan Island and Lopez Island, Washington state

FWS corrects endangered listing for two Florida butterflies. The original listing did not contain a column for the “Family” of the species

NMFS has incorporated public comments into revisions of the 2013 marine mammal stock assessment reports (SARs).

Enforcement: DOJ asks for comments on proposed consent decree under CWA.

Monday, August 18

FWS to prepare EIS on application to amend the ESA permit issued for the Multiple Species Conservation Program County of San Diego Subarea Plan. “The EIS will evaluate the impacts of several alternatives related to the proposed issuance of an amended incidental take permit to the County of San Diego for the quarry and landfill project in San Diego County, California.”

Coast Guard releases Record of Decision for FEIS approved on April 8, 2014, for proposed construction of a highway bridge across the Manatee River at Parrish, Manatee County, Florida | Docket

FERC releases EA for the Leidy Southeast Expansion Project, proposed by Transcontinental Gas Pipe Line Company. “Transco requests authorization to construct and operate certain natural gas pipeline facilities in various counties in New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Maryland, Virginia, and North Carolina to expand the natural gas delivery capacity to the northeast region of the United States by up to 525,000 dekatherms per day.”

FERC to prepare EIS for the Proposed Lake Charles Expansion Project

FS starts forest plan assessment process to determine whether a forest plan amendment is needed regarding livestock grazing for the Dixie, Fishlake, and Manti-La Sal National Forests | More

NRCS plans to issue a series of revised conservation practice standards in the National Handbook of Conservation Practices.

NRCS adopts EA/FONSI for Upper Kanab Creek Watershed Vegetation Management Project

State Dept. issues amended NOI and is conducting additional public scoping on plan by Enbridge Energy to operate its Line 67 border segment. “In addition, a different third-party contractor is assisting the Department with the SEIS process than the firm that was named in the 2013 NOI.” | Documents

Friday, August 15

FWS proposes designating 546,335 acres in Arizona, California, Colorado, Idaho, Nevada, New Mexico, Texas, Utah, and Wyoming as critical habitat for the yellow-billed cuckoo

FWS issues endangered species and marine mammal permits

FWS issues endangered species and marine mammal permits

FWS receives application for an enhancement of survival permit. The permit application includes a draft candidate conservation agreement with assurances (CCAA) for the greater sage-grouse on private rangelands in Baker and
Malheur Counties, Oregon

Office of National Marine Sanctuaries is seeking applications for vacant seats for 7 of its 13 national marine sanctuary advisory councils and for the Northwestern Hawaiian Islands Coral Reef Ecosystem Reserve Advisory Council

EPA announces receipt of EIS’s

Thursday, August 14

FWS releases final comprehensive conservation plan and EA/FONSI for Cokeville Meadows National Wildlife Refuge in Wyoming | More here

NOAA: Funding Availability: Fiscal Year 2014 RESTORE Act Science Program | RESTORE program page

Department of the Treasury issues regulations concerning the investment and use of amounts deposited in the Gulf Coast Restoration Trust Fund, which was established in the Treasury of the United States by the Resources and Ecosystem Sustainability, Tourist Opportunities, and Revived Economies of the Gulf Coast States Act of 2012 (RESTORE Act).

BLM’S Palm Springs South Coast Field Office, in response to the May 10, 2011, Order of the United States District Court for the Central District of California, will prepare a supplemental EIS addressing deficiencies identified by the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in the 1997 EIS for the Eagle Mountain Landfill and Recycling Center Project | More here

Wednesday, August 13

Trinity Adaptive Management Working Group: Public Meeting and Teleconference to be held Sept. 9-10

Wolverine listing proposal withdrawn  |  More links

FWS finds that C. wartoni — Warton’s Cave Meshweaver — is not a distinct species and is therefore not a listable entity under the ESA | Species profile from ECOS | WildEarth Guardians page

NMFS receives endangered species permit application

Tuesday, August 12

FWS lists Florida leafwing (Anaea troglodyta floridalis) and Bartram’s scrub-hairstreak (Strymon acis bartrami) as endangered.

FWS designates critical habitat for the Florida leafwing (Anaea troglodyta floridalis) and Bartram’s scrub-hairstreak (Strymon acis bartrami) | Press release on listing and CH designation

NMFS approves Marine Conservation Plan for Guam

FERC to prepare EA on impacts of the Tri-County Bare Steel Replacement Project involving construction and operation of facilities by Columbia Gas Transmission, LLC (Columbia) in Allegheny, Greene, and Washington counties, Pennsylvania.

FERC releases DEIS for the Algonquin Incremental Market Project (AIM Project)

FS to prepare EIS for Tobias Forest Ecosystem Restoration Project

BLM Pecos District Resource Advisory Council’s Lesser Prairie-Chicken Habitat Preservation Area of Critical Environmental Concerns Livestock Grazing Subcommittee will meet Sept. 17 in Roswell, N.M.

Monday, August 11

FERC: El Dorado Irrigation District; Notice of Application Accepted for Filing, Soliciting Motions To Intervene and Protests, Ready for Environmental Analysis, and Soliciting Comments, Recommendations, Terms and Conditions, and Fishway Prescriptions

FERC: Rockies Express Pipeline, LLC; Notice of Intent To Prepare an Environmental Assessment for the Proposed Zone 3 East-To-West Project and Request for Comments on Environmental Issues

FERC: Gulf LNG Liquefaction Company, LLC, Gulf LNG Energy, LLC, Gulf LNG Pipeline, LLC; Notice of Intent To Prepare an Environmental Impact Statement for the Planned Gulf LNG Liquefaction Project, Request for Comments on Environmental Issues, and Notice of Public Scoping Meeting

FERC: On Tuesday, August 26, 2014, and Wednesday, August 27, 2014, at 8 a.m. Alaska Time Zone, Commission staff will be participating in an environmental site review (site review) for the Sweetheart Lake Hydroelectric Project in the City and Borough of Juneau, Alaska. The site review will consist of both a boat and aerial tour of the project site.

EPA receives EIS’s for review

FWS proposes migratory bird hunting regs on certain federal Indian reservations and ceded lands for the 2014-15 season | Docket

NPS releases DEIS for the White-tailed Deer Management Plan, Fire Island National Seashore, New York.

BLM releases Record of Decision to amend the Right-of-Way for the Blythe Solar Power Project (BSPP), Riverside County, California

Friday, August 8

Corps of Engineers releases EIS for the proposed SR 1409 (Military Cutoff Road) Extension and Proposed US 17 Hampstead Bypass New Hanover and Pender counties in North Carolina, NCDOT TIP Projects U-4751 and R-3300 | More

NMFS will host meeting “to elicit scientific information related to the designation of Steller sea lion critical habitat.” | More on critical habitat from NMFS

The Missile Defense Agency issues procedures to implement NEPA, Executive Order 11514, and Council on Environmental Quality (CEQ) regulations on implementing NEPA | More

EPA takes notice of new EIS’s

FS to prepare EIS “to disclose the environmental consequences of implementing alternatives considered for the Becker Integrated Resource Project. The 19,327 acre Becker project area falls within the Crooked River Watershed. The area is located approximately 18 miles northeast of Idaho City, Idaho, and about 48 miles northeast of Boise, Idaho, in Boise County.” | More

Thursday, August 7

NMFS proposes rule to implement draft Amendment 9 to the 2006 Consolidated Highly Migratory Species (HMS) Fishery Management Plan (FMP), which would implement the smoothhound shark-specific requirements of the 2012 Shark Biological Opinion (BiOp), and considers modifying current regulations related to the use of Vessel Monitoring Systems (VMS) by Atlantic shark fishermen using gillnet gear.

FS to prepare EIS on Shasta-Trinity National Forest’s proposal to treat diseased stands of Shasta red fir (Abies magnifica var. shastensis) and mixed conifer to reduce disease occurrence and fuels accumulations on approximately 1,400 acres. Vegetative treatments include regeneration with legacy tree retention, thin from above, sanitation/improvement cutting, plantation/pre-commercial thinning, and a roadside fuels buffer | More

Wednesday, August 6

FS: The Angeles National Forest will prepare an EIS on proposal to provide limited, managed recreational activities in the vicinity of Williamson Rock. The proposed action would include allowing access to the Pacific Crest National Scenic Trail (PCT) and limited access to Williamson Rock for rock climbing, while protecting the federally listed mountain yellow- legged frog (MYLF) and other unique resources. The area has been closed to the public since 2006, either by Forest Order or court injunction, to protect the MYLF. | More

FS to prepare supplement to the Snow Basin Vegetation Management Project Final Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) to address the environmental impact of the project on elk and elk habitat, as directed by the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit in League of Wilderness Defenders/Blue Mountains Biodiversity Project v. Connaughton, 752 F.3d 755, 767 (9th Cir. 2014). Specifically, the court held that “plaintiffs are likely to prevail on their claim that a supplemental EIS must be completed to show the environmental impact of the Snow Basin project on elk and their habitat now that the [Travel Management Plan] has been withdrawn.” Id. at 761. | More |

FWS withdraws proposed rule to list Graham’s beardtongue (Penstemon grahamii) and White River beardtongue (Penstemon scariosus var. albifluvis) as threatened species. “This withdrawal is based on our conclusion that the threats to the species as identified in the proposed rule no longer are as significant as we previously determined. We base this conclusion on our analysis of new information concerning current and future threats and conservation efforts. We find
the best scientific and commercial data available indicate that the threats to the species and their habitats have been reduced so that the two species no longer meet the statutory definition of threatened or endangered species.” | More | CBD release

Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife requests 15-year permit under the ESA to authorize take of the threatened Canada lynx incidental to otherwise lawful activities associated with MDIFW’s statewide furbearer trapping program.

FWS receives applications for T&E species permits in Southeast: mussels, fish, Indiana bat

FWS receives ITP application, draft habitat conservation plan, and a draft Implementing Agreement (IA) from Pioneer Trail Wind Farm, LLC, located in Ford and Iroquois Counties, Illinois

FWS receives application to add to its 10-year permit approximately 0.9 acres (ac) of occupied Florida scrub-jay foraging and sheltering habitat incidental to construction of a 24-ac public park (from city of Deltona, Fla.). FWS also receives application from Adventist Health System/Sunbelt Inc. for take of approximately 3.08 acres (ac) of occupied sand skink foraging and sheltering habitat incidental to construction of a 73-ac hospital, and seeks a 10-year permit. The applicant proposes to mitigate for the take of the sand skink by the purchase of 6.2 mitigation credits within the Sebring Scrub
Conservation Bank.

NMFS publishes annual fur seal subsistence harvests on St. George and St. Paul Islands, Alaska (the Pribilof Islands) for 2011-2013 and the annual estimates of fur seal subsistence harvests for 2014-2016.

NMFS is requesting comments on its proposal to issue an incidental harassment authorization (IHA) to Navy as part of pier maintenance project

Corps of Engineers has issued an Engineer Circular to provide guidance related to how USACE will process requests by others to alter a USACE civil works project.


Tuesday, August 5

FWS extends comment period on proposal to list bi-state population of greater sage-grouse as threatened, w/ special rule

FWS releases draft EA for the proposed Annual Funding Agreement with the Confederated Salish and Kootenai Tribes; National Bison Range Complex, Moiese, Mont.

NMFS

Takes of Marine Mammals Incidental to Specified Activities:

NMFS has received an application from the National Science Foundation (NSF) Division of Polar Programs, and Antarctic Support Contract (ASC) on behalf of two research institutions, University of Texas at Austin and University of Memphis, for an Incidental Harassment Authorization (IHA) to take marine mammals, by harassment, incidental to conducting a low-energy marine geophysical (seismic) survey in the Scotia Sea and South Atlantic Ocean, September to October 2014. Pursuant to the Marine Mammal Protection Act (MMPA), NMFS is requesting comments on its proposal to issue an IHA to NSF and ASC to incidentally harass, by Level B harassment only, 26 species of marine mammals during the specified activity.

Seismic Surveys in Cook Inlet, AK

Endangered and Threatened Species: Take of Anadromous Fish

Lower Elwha Klallam Tribe and the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW) have submitted five Hatchery and Genetic Management Plans, to be considered jointly, to NMFS pursuant to the limitation on take prohibitions for actions conducted under Limit 6 of the 4(d) Rule for salmon and steelhead promulgated under the Endangered Species Act

Permits

Marine Mammals; File No. 14241

USACE requests proposals from nonfederal interests for feasibility studies and modifications to authorized USACE water resources development projects or feasibility studies.

FERC releases multi-project EIS on  applications for license for the York Haven Hydroelectric Project, the Muddy Run Pumped Storage Project, and the Conowingo Hydroelectric Project (Press release)

Monday, August 4

FWS designates about 623 miles of river segments occupied by the sharpnose shiner and smalleye shiner in Baylor, Crosby, Fisher, Garza, Haskell, Kent, King, Knox, Stonewall, Throckmorton, and Young Counties, in the upper Brazos
River basin of Texas, as critical habitat | Docket

FWS lists sharpnose shiner and smalleye shiner as endangered | Docket

HCP proposed in connection with construction of a multi-unit condominium in Escambia County, Florida, that would take Perdido Key beach mouse

BLM Barstow Field Office intends to prepare an amendment to the California Desert Conservation Area Plan (1980, as amended) with a joint Eis/R in cooperation with the California Public Utilities Commission in order to analyze Southern California Edison’s proposal for the Coolwater to Lugo Transmission Line Project in San Bernardino County

New York State Department of Environmental Conservation [Kathryn Hattala: Responsible Party], has been issued a permit modification (Permit No. 16436-01) to take Atlantic sturgeon (Acipenser oxyrinchus oxyrinchus) and shortnose sturgeon (Acipenser brevirostrum) for purposes of scientific research.

Friday, Aug. 1

FWS lists plants as endangered: Physaria globosa (Short’s bladderpod), Helianthus verticillatus (whorled sunflower), and Leavenworthia crassa (fleshy-fruit gladecress). Short’s bladderpod occurs in Indiana, Kentucky, and Tennessee. Whorled sunflower occurs in Alabama, Georgia, and Tennessee. Fleshy-fruit gladecress occurs only in Alabama.

FWS asks for public comment on incidental take permit (ITP) applications for take of the federally listed American burying beetle resulting from activities associated with the construction, operation, maintenance, repair, and decommissioning of oil and gas pipelines and related well field activities in Oklahoma

FWS releases FEIS for the Ballville Dam Project, in Sandusky County, Ohio.

NMFS issues positive 60-day finding on petition to “designate the Sakhalin Bay-Amur River stock of beluga whales (Delphinapterus leucas) as a depleted stock under the Marine Mammal Protection Act.” NMFS “will initiate a status review promptly.” | More here

NMFS announces approval of a Marine Conservation Plan (MCP) for Pacific Insular Areas other than American Samoa, Guam, and the Northern Mariana Islands. | More here, probably tomorrow (Aug. 1)

Marine Mammals File Nos. 14097 and 16479 (Whales)

Army Corps of Engineers releases EIS’s on:

Alaska Gasline Development Corp., Alaska Stand Alone Pipeline Utility Grade Natural Gas Transportation Pipeline

Installation of a Terminal Groin Structure at the Western End of South Beach, Bald Head Island, Adjacent to the Federal Wilmington Harbor Channel of the Cape Fear River, Brunswick County, NC

Riverport Development, Proposed New Interchange on I-95, Jasper County, SC

NPS releases EIS for the White-tailed Deer Management Plan, Antietam National Battlefield, Maryland; Monocacy National Battlefield, Maryland; and Manassas National Battlefield Park, Virginia. | More

FS to prepare EIS to analyze impacts for vegetative treatment in the Kahler Creek area of the Heppner Ranger District of the Umatilla National Forest

Thursday, July 31

Migratory Bird Hunting: Frameworks for Early Season Hunting Regulations; Meetings

Endangered Species Recovery Permit Applications

Endangered Species Recovery Permit Applications

FWS continues to suspend elephant trophies from Zimbabwe

NMFS: Breakwater Replacement Project in Eastport, ME

Marine Geophysical Survey in the Northwest Atlantic Ocean offshore North Carolina, September to October 2014

Wednesday, July 30

FWS releases draft CCP/EA for Sam D. Hamilton Noxubee National Wildlife Refuge in Oktibbeha, Winston, and Noxubee Counties, Mississippi | Get draft CCP/EA here

Monongahela National Forest, Gauley Ranger District intends to prepare an EIS on vegetation management project addressing potential environmental impacts due to creating early successional forest; enhancing the growth and mast production of forest stands; and increasing wildlife habitat diversity. | More on Monongahela NF projects

BuRec releases water management plans for review: Patterson Irrigation District; Central San Joaquin Water Conservation District; Madera Irrigation District; Panoche Water District; Sacramento County Water Agency; city of Redding; Sacramento Municipal Utility District; Stockton East Water District

Tuesday, July 29

FWS receives T&E applications (Southwest)

Corps to hold webinars on implementation of The Water Resources Reform and Development Act of 2014, for which it is developing guidance

BOEM issues “Call for Information and Nominations” as the initial step in the prelease process for Sale 242 in the Beaufort Sea Planning Area.

Monday, July 28

North Carolina Department of Marine Fisheries (NCDMF) has been issued a permit for incidental take of Atlantic sturgeon (Acipenser oxyrinchus oxyrinchus) Distinct Population Segments associated with the otherwise lawful commercial inshore gillnet fishery in North Carolina

FHwA will work with District of Columbia Department of Transportation to prepare supplemental FEIS for the South Capitol Street Project

Forest Service: Tongass National Forest: AK, Kake to Petersburg Transmission Line Intertie; Correction

Friday, July 25

FWS proposes revisions to the existing nonessential experimental population designation of the Mexican wolf (Canis lupus baileyi) | FWS’s Mexican wolf page

FWS releases final EA/FONSI, Response to Comments, and final Oil and Gas Industry Conservation Plan associated with issuance of ESA Section 10(a)(1)(B) permits for the American Burying Beetle in Oklahoma (ICP). We also invite the public to comment on an application from Canyon Creek Energy Operating, for incidental take of the American burying beetle resulting from activities associated with the construction, operation, maintenance, repair, and decommissioning of oil and gas pipelines and related well field activities in Oklahoma, under the ICP

FWS sends ICR to OMB for approval on Coastal Impact Assistance Program

NMFS proposes rule for lobster fishery in southern New England (scroll over for description) | Docket

NMFS receives request from the Port of Friday Harbor, WA, for authorization to take marine mammals (Level B harassment) during a marina reconstruction project. “The use of vibratory pile driving is expected to produce underwater sound at levels that have the potential to result in behavioral harassment of marine mammals.” | All permits

NMFS issues Incidental Harassment Authorization to the Washington State Department of Transportation “to take, by harassment, small numbers of eight species of marine mammals incidental to construction activities at the Mukilteo Multimodal Ferry Terminal in Mukilteo, Snohomish County, Washington, between September 2014 and August 2015.”

NMFS issues Letter of Authorization (LOA) to the Alaska Aerospace Corporation to take two species of pinnipeds
incidental to space vehicle and missile launch operations at the Kodiak Launch Complex in Kodiak, Alaska.

NMFS grants authorization to Navy to incidentally harass five species of marine mammals during activities associated with a wharf construction project in Hood Canal, Washington.

NMFS issues permit to Samuel Wasser at University of Washington to conduct research on killer whales (Orcinus orca).

NOAA plans to evaluate the performance of the Indiana Coastal Management Program, Waquoit Bay National Estuarine Research Reserve, and Chesapeake Bay National Estuarine Research Reserve in Virginia.

NMFS approves marine conservation plan for the Northern Mariana Islands  |  Docket  |  Western Pacific Regional Fishery Management Council  (The plan itself doesn’t appear to be available yet)

Thursday, July 24

FWS adds Zuni bluehead sucker (Catostomus discobolus yarrowi) to list of endangered species. Fish from Arizona and New Mexico is threatened by habitat destruction and predation by nonative fish. Also, “[s]mall population size and restricted ranges of the species make the Zuni bluehead sucker population vulnerable to stochastic events, such as wildfire and drought.” | Rulemaking docket

FWS receives ITP application and accompanying low-effect HCP from NewMark Merrill Companies for Walmart commercial center in Rialto, Calif. (San Bernardino County, CA).

FWS issues FONSI on Final Southeast Missouri Ozarks Regional Restoration Plan and Environmental Assessment.

FWS receives recovery permit applications to survey for various California species — fairy shrimp, southwestern willow flycatcher, Santa Barbara County tiger salamander, et al.

NMFS proposes to allow Pribilof Island Aleut Community of St. George Island to harvest up to 150 male young of the year fur seals annually during a new autumn harvest season from all breeding and hauling grounds, consistent with traditional practices, to meet the community’s nutritional and cultural needs.

NMFS asks for public comment on a petition for rulemaking under the Administrative Procedure Act. The Center for Biological Diversity (CBD) has petitioned the U.S. Department of Commerce to promulgate regulations to prohibit fishing for Pacific bluefin tuna and to identify specific reference points used to determine if overfishing is occurring or if the stock is overfished. (CBD news release)

“The petition asserts that Pacific bluefin tuna are not adequately protected under the existing Fishery Management Plan for U.S. West Coast Fisheries for Highly Migratory Species (HMS FMP). The petition also states that more robust international actions are necessary for ending overfishing of the stock. The petition seeks that NMFS take action to amend the HMS FMP and its implementing regulations for addressing domestic fishing on Pacific bluefin tuna. The petitioner also requests that NMFS develop recommendations to the Secretary of State to end overfishing of Pacific bluefin tuna at the international level, which would not be a rulemaking action.”

FRA and the California High-Speed Rail Authority will jointly prepare an EIR/S for the Burbank-to-Los Angeles section of the California High- Speed Rail (HSR) System

FRA and the California High-Speed Rail Authority will jointly prepare an EIR/S for the Palmdale-to-Burbank section of the California High- Speed Rail (HSR) System

Wednesday, July 23

FWS adds marine species to endangered species list (technical notice, based on species already listed by NMFS)

FWS receives endangered species permit applications

FHwA announces modifications to the environmental review process for the US 219 Project in Garrett County, Maryland, and Somerset County, Pennsylvania

Tuesday, July 22

FWS releases proposed prelisting conservation policy | Docket

FWS receives proposed low-effect habitat conservation plan and application for 5-year incidental take permit for take of the gopher tortoise incidental to construction of a hydrocarbon test well drilling pad in Greene County, Mississippi

NMFS announces adoption of a final recovery plan for the endangered Sacramento River winter-run Chinook salmon Evolutionarily Significant Unit (ESU), the threatened Central Valley spring-run Chinook salmon ESU, and the threatened California Central Valley steelhead Distinct Population Segment (DPS) | Recovery plans

Marine mammal permit issued for photography of harbor seals

BOEM issues ROD for PEIS assessing impacts of authorizing geological and geophysical (G&G) survey activities in the Mid-Atlantic and South Atlantic Planning Areas between 2012 and 2020. The PEIS covers G&G activities conducted under BOEM’s oil and gas, renewable energy, and marine minerals programs. The purpose of the proposed action addressed by the PEIS is to gather state-of-the-practice data about the ocean bottom and subsurface of the Area of Interest. | More

Forest Service reopens public comment period for the proposed directive regarding best management practices (BMPs) for water quality protection on National Forest System (NFS) lands

Monday, July 21

EPA: Proposed Determination to restrict the use of certain waters in the South Fork Koktuli River, North Fork Koktuli River, and Upper Talarik Creek watersheds in Southwest Alaska as disposal sites for dredged or fill material associated with mining the Pebble deposit, a copper-, gold-, and molybdenum-bearing ore body

BLM Rawlins Field Office to prepare a Resource Management Plan (RMP) amendment with an associated EA.

FWS reopens public scoping period for the preparation of a comprehensive conservation plan revision and associated NEPA documents for Florida Panther National Wildlife Refuge (NWR), located in Collier County in southwest Florida

FWS receives enhancement of survival permit application that includes a proposed candidate conservation agreement with assurances (CCAA) for the Oregon spotted frog addressing conservation and other covered activities at the Old Mill District of the city of Bend in Deschutes County, Oregon. | Access documents here

NMFS releases proposed recovery plan for Snake River Sockeye Salmon | Plan can be found here

BOEM publishes Proposed Sale Notice (PSN) for the sale of two leases for commercial wind energy leases on the Outer Continental Shelf (OCS) offshore New Jersey  |  BOEM N.J.

NPS to prepare EIS for a Mountain Goat Management Plan in Olympic National Park | Docs from Olympic NP

Friday, July 18

BLM plans to incorporate Gunnison Sage-Grouse Conservation Measures into Resource Management Plans (RMPs) within the range of the species and prepare an associated EIS. “By this notice, the BLM is announcing the beginning of the scoping process to solicit public comments and identify issues.” | BLM Gunnison sage-grouse page

BLM proposes rules addressing conduct on BLM public land in Grand County and San Juan County, Utah. “The conduct addressed includes the operation of motorized or mechanized vehicles, camping and campfires, firewood and petrified wood collection, and the use of glass containers.”

EPA receives EIS’s for review

NOAA releases EA, updates regulations and management plan for Gray’s Reef National Marine Sanctuary. The regs are revised to clarify the prohibition on anchoring and add an exemption to allow the use of weighted marker buoys that are continuously tended by vessel operators during otherwise lawful fishing or diving activities, not attached to a vessel, and not capable of holding a boat at anchor. | Gray’s Reef website

NMFS permit notices:

Thursday, July 17

FWS receives application for an enhancement of survival permit for the federally endangered Owens pupfish from the Bishop Paiute Tribe | Proposed Safe Harbor agreement can be found at FWS Ventura, Calif., website

Wednesday, July 16

FWS receives proposed habitat conservation plan (HCP) and application for ITP from Walton County, Fla. The proposed 25-year permit would take the loggerhead sea turtle, green sea turtle, leatherback sea turtle, Kemp’s ridley sea turtle, piping plover, and Choctawhatchee beach mouse, incidental to activities as conducted or permitted by the applicant. | More from Walton CountyNMFS extends for 15 days the comment period on the proposed rule to implement special management zones for five Delaware artificial reefs. | Docket

NMFS receives request for marine mammal permit amendment (California sea lions)

BLM to prepare EA on proposed change to the land-tenure classification for 560.62 acres of public land in Owyhee County, Idaho | More

NPS releases FEIS/GMP for Gulf Islands National Seashore in Florida and Mississippi. | More

Tuesday, July 15

FWS reopens public comment period on Oct. 3, 2013, proposed designation of about 2,700 acres in seven units in Miami-Dade County as critical habitat for Brickellia mosieri (Florida brickell-bush) and Linum carteri var. carteri (Carter’s small-flowered flax). FWS also will release draft economic analysis (DEA) of the proposed designation. “In addition, we have made minor amendments to the proposed critical habitat units based on information received from other Federal agencies and from the public during our initial public comment period.” | Docket (which is supposed to include economic analysis when FR notice is published tomorrow)

From FR notice: “The total incremental section 7 costs associated with the proposed designation are estimated to be $120,000 (2013 dollars) in a single year for both administrative and conservation effort costs.”

FWS opens public comment period on proposed designation of 5,561 acres in the Spring Mountains of Clark County, Nevada, as critical habitat for the Mount Charleston blue butterfly. FWS also releases draft economic analysis. | Docket

“[T]he maximum estimated incremental cost is estimated to be no greater than $109,200 in a given year.”

FWS extends public review and comment period for the draft comprehensive conservation plan (CCP) and EIS for Chincoteague National Wildlife Refuge (NWR) and Wallops Island NWR | More

NMFS receives request from the Marine Corps for authorization to take marine mammals, specifically bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus), by harassment, incidental to training operations at the Corps’ Cherry Point Range Complex in North Carolina from September 2014 to September 2019

Sport Fishing and Boating Partnership Council to meet July 30-31 in D.C. | SFBPC page

Monday, July 14

FWS requests approval of ICR for post-delisting monitoring of peregrine falcon | Monitoring plan

FWS receives recovery permit applications    |   San Diego Zoo, Micronesian Environmental Services

NMFS withdraws a proposed rule that would have established new regulations for compliance with NEPA in the context of fishery management actions developed pursuant to the Magnuson- Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act (MSA). Instead of going forward with a final rule directly resulting from the 2008 proposed rule, NMFS issued an internal policy on Feb. 19, 2013. This policy, entitled “[NEPA] Compliance for Council-Initiated Fishery Management Actions under the [MSA]” clarifies roles and responsibilities of NMFS and the Regional Fishery Management Councils, explains timing and procedural linkages, provides guidance on documentation needs, and fosters partnerships and cooperation between NMFS and Councils on NEPA compliance.” | More |

NMFS Assistant Administrator determines that observers participating in observer programs, in the seven domestic fisheries in which tuna is regularly harvested, are qualified to issue observer statements for purposes of the dolphin-safe labeling
program under the Dolphin Protection Consumer Information Act

Friday, July 11

NMFS designates and authorizes for release a nonessential experimental population of Upper Columbia River (UCR) spring-run chinook salmon in the Okanogan River subbasin

NMFS extends public comment period until Aug. 27 on humpback whale 90-day finding made June 26 (CTRL-F “June 26″)

FWS: Sport Fishing and Boating Partnership Council to hold public teleconference July 23 (FR notice)

BPA to prepare EIS on Hot Springs to Anaconda Transmission Line Rebuild Project

EPA receives EIS’s for review

The SAB Advisory Panel on EPA’s Report on the Environment 2014 public meeting will be held on Wednesday, July 30 from 9-5 p.m. ET and Thursday, July 31 from 8:30-4 p.m. ET. (Location: J.W. Marriott hotel, Pennsylvania Avenue, Washington, D.C.) | EPA SAB

The SAB Panel for the Review of the EPA Water Body Connectivity Report will conduct public teleconferences on August 20, 2014 and August 21, 2014.

Thursday, July 10

FWS designates critical habitat for Northwest Atlantic DPS of loggerhead sea turtles || also see ESWR post)

NMFS designates critical habitat for loggerhead sea turtles in North Atlantic

NMFS receives application from SAExploration, Inc. (SAE) for an Incidental Harassment Authorization (IHA) to take marine mammals, by harassment, incidental to a marine 3-dimensional (3D) ocean bottom node (OBN) seismic surveys program in the state and federal waters of the Beaufort Sea, Alaska (All incidental take authorizations)

NMFS issues Incidental Harassment Authorization (IHA) to the Department of the Navy, Naval Base Ventura County (NBVC), California, to take marine mammals, by harassment, incidental to the San Nicolas Island (SNI) roads and airfield repairs project.

NOAA Science Advisory Board to meet

NMFS releases Atlantic Highly Migratory Species (HMS) Management-Based Research Needs and Priorities document. “The purpose of this document is to communicate key research needs that directly support Atlantic HMS management. Atlantic HMS are defined as bluefin, bigeye, albacore, yellowfin, and skipjack tunas, swordfish, billfish (blue marlin, white marlin, roundscale spearfish, longbill spearfish, and sailfish), and sharks.”| Docket

FWS issues endangered species/marine mammal permits to zoos, research organizations, circuses, individuals (list includes Houston Zoo, Dallas Zoo, Feld Entertainment, Wildlife Conservation Society, more)

FWS receives endangered species permit applications

Wednesday, July 9

NPS asks OMB for ICR approval. “The proposed collection is needed to update the scientific information that was used in the 1996 Record of Decision that the Department of the Interior used to inform their decisions on [Glen Canyon] Dam operations. This information will be used to assist in the development of an operating plan for the Glen Canyon Dam in accordance with the Grand Canyon Protection Act to protect and improve the values for which the Grand Canyon National Park and Glen Canyon National Recreation Area were established.”

NPS releases FEIS for the General Management Plan (GMP) for Canaveral National Seashore | More

FS begins process to revise land management plan for Chugach National Forest releases EIS

Tuesday, July 8

Two garternsakes in Arizona, New Mexico to be listed as threatened (FWS)

Five-year reviews scheduled for 11 species (FWS)

NMFS issues Incidental Harassment Authorization to Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory at Columbia University, in collaboration with the National Science Foundation, to “take” marine mammals incidental to conducting a marine geophysical (seismic) survey in the northwest Atlantic Ocean off the New Jersey coast July through August, 2014. (BiOp issued on survey)

Monday, July 7

FERC issues EA on proposed Clarksville Natural Gas Interconnect Pipeline Project | Environmental Assessment | More info | FERC pending projects

NMFS issues permit to SeaWorld to import one female, captive-born Pacific white-sided dolphin (Lagenorhynchus obliquidens) from Kamogawa SeaWorld in Chiba, Japan, to Sea World San Antonio for the purposes of public display.

Thursday, July 3

Scalloped hammerhead shark DPS’s listed as threatened, endangered | ESWR post w/ map, other links

Marine Mammal Commission looking for members of the Committee of Scientific Advisors on Marine Mammals | MMC page

EPA announces receipt of EIS’s | EPA comment letters on EIS’s

FWS asks OMB to approve Information Collection Request on wind energy guidelines | Guidelines

FWS receives application for incidental take of the Delhi Sands flower-loving fly from the city of Colton, Calif., in connection with proposed West Valley Habitat Conservation Plan | Acceptance of grant from FWS for completion of several components of the HCP

FWS receives proposed low-effect HCP and accompanying permit for incidental take of the gopher tortoise in connection with construction of a hydrocarbon exploration well pad in Lamar County, Mississippi

BOEM issues Final Sale Notice (FSN) for the sale of two commercial wind energy leases on the Outer Continental Shelf (OCS) offshore Maryland | BOEM activities-Maryland

Wednesday, July 2

FWS issues positive 90-day finding on petition to downlist West Indian manatee | Text  (FWS says it will conduct 5-year review along with status review) | Docket | Recovery plan can be found here | Science Summary in Support of Manatee Protection Area Designation in Puerto Rico (Drew et al. 2012) | PLF files petition (news release) | Petition

FWS contracts with University of Arizona to conduct a survey of southern Arizona and southwestern New Mexico ranchers to determine their knowledge of and attitudes toward jaguar habitat, their level of knowledge regarding payments for ecosystem services, and their attitudes and interest toward a payment for ecosystem services intended to benefit jaguar habitat.

NPS, DC Water will prepare EIS for the Potomac River Tunnel in the National Capital Region.

Heather Liwanag at Adelphi University has applied for a permit to receive, import, and export specimens of marine mammals for scientific research purposes.

FEMA proposes to prepare a programmatic environmental assessment (PEA) to evaluate the potential beneficial and adverse impacts from eligible wildfire mitigation activities funded under the Hazard Mitigation Grant Program (HMGP) and Pre-Disaster Mitigation (PDM) Program | Docket

Tuesday, July 1

“Significant portion of range” policy finalized by FWS, NMFS

NMFS corrects June 3 proposed rule on the Oculina Bank habitat area of particular concern (HAPC). The proposed rule said it would increase the size of the HAPC by 405.42 square miles for a total area of 694.42 square miles. Incorrect. The proposed rule would actually increase the size of the Oculina Bank HAPC by 343.42 square miles, for a total area of 632.42 square miles.

Navy will prepare a Supplemental EIS (SEIS)/Supplemental Overseas EIS (SOEIS) to analyze the potential impact of Surveillance Towed Array Sensor System Low Frequency Active (SURTASS LFA) sonar on the five bottlenose dolphin stocks comprising the Hawaiian Islands Stock Complex (Kauai/Niiahu, Oahu, 4-island, Hawaii Island, and Hawaii Pelagic).

Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife (MDIFW) applies to FWS for an Enhancement of Survival Permit that would authorize take of the New England cottontail resulting from certain habitat improvement and land use activities, should the species be listed as endangered or threatened in the future. | More here | and here | NE Cottontail assessment (from 2004)

Associated Water Users of the Duchesne and Strawberry Rivers have applied for an enhancement of survival permit, which includes a proposed Safe Harbor Agreement for the Colorado pikeminnow and razorback sucker, and a proposed Candidate Conservation Agreement with Assurances for the roundtail chub, flannelmouth sucker, and bluehead sucker in the middle Duchesne River watershed, Utah. | More

BOEM enters into cooperative agreement with University of Delaware to conduct a survey “to assess the impact of offshore wind power projects on coastal recreation and tourism from Massachusetts to South Carolina. The survey will gauge public perceptions of offshore wind energy projects and how development could impact future recreation and visitation choices. BOEM will use this information, along with other economic and environmental information, in our offshore wind decision-making process and marine spatial planning efforts. States and coastal communities will use the information for local coastal planning efforts.”

Draft Environmental Impact Statement for the Wilderness Stewardship Plan, Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks, California

Notice of Intent To Prepare a Joint Environmental Impact Statement and Environmental Impact Report for the West of Devers Upgrade Project, Riverside and San Bernardino Counties, CA

Monday, June 30

FWS publishes final rule downlisting wood stork from endangered to threatened | Docket | Wood stork page

FWS extends for six months its decision whether to list the northern long-eared bat as endangered | Myotis septentrionalis

DOE’s Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy invites public comment on its Request for Information (RFI) regarding a potential funding opportunity to advance the readiness of bat and eagle impact minimization technologies through investments in technology development and field testing. | Complete RFI is here

NMFS plans to start using policy — “National Environmental Policy Act Compliance for Council-Initiated Fishery Management Actions under the Magnuson-Stevens Act” — to clarify roles and responsibilities of NMFS and the Regional Fishery Management Councils explain the timing and procedural linkages, provide guidance on documentation needs, and foster partnerships and cooperation between NMFS and FMCs on NEPA compliance. | Docket

NMFS issues an Incidental Harassment Authorization (IHA) to BP Exploration (Alaska) Inc. (BP) to take marine mammals, by harassment, incidental to conducting a shallow geohazard survey in Foggy Island Bay, Beaufort Sea, Alaska, during the 2014 open water season.

More marine mammal permits

3D Seismic Survey in Prudhoe Bay, Beaufort Sea, AK

Conductor Pipe Installation Activities at Harmony Platform in Santa Barbara Channel Offshore of California

Friday, June 27

FWS issues EA/FONSI for issuance of a programmatic take permit for golden eagles in association with the operation of the Shiloh IV Wind Project in Solano County, California

Endangered species proposals for COP

FWS extends comment period on draft comprehensive conservation plan (CCP) and environmental impact statement (EIS) for Monomoy National Wildlife Refuge (NWR).

DOE to prepare EIS to assess the potential environmental impacts from its proposed federal action of granting a Presidential permit to Minnesota Power to construct, operate, maintain, and connect a new electric transmission line across the U.S.-Canada border in northern Minnesota | More here

EPA receives EIS’s for review | More

NMFS issues this final rule to amend the regulations implementing the Atlantic Large Whale Take Reduction Plan (Plan). This rule revises the management measures for reducing the incidental mortality and serious injury to the North Atlantic right whale (Eubalaena glacialis), humpback whale (Megaptera novaeangliae), and fin whale (Balaenoptera physalus) in commercial trap/pot and gillnet fisheries

BLM to prepare EIS for the Proposed Coeur Rochester Mine Plan of Operations Amendment 10, Pershing County, NV | More

Thursday, June 26

Comment period extended until Oct. 9 on proposed revisions to definitions and regulations regarding critical habitat
Comment period extended until Oct. 9 on proposed policy re: implementation of critical habitat

Meeting scheduled July 1 of California Desert District Advisory Council’s Desert Renewable Energy Conservation Plan Subcommittee | More

Federal Deepwater Horizon natural resource trustee agencies and the State Deepwater Horizon natural resource trustee agencies for Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama, and Florida release final programmatic and Phase III Early Restoration Plan and Final Early Restoration PEIS | Go here for the docs | Press release and supposedly easy-to-read summary

NMFS says there’s enough information to move forward with a finding that the Central North Pacific Population of Humpback Whale is a Distinct Population Segment (DPS) and to delist it (90-day finding) | Docket | Press release

Wednesday, June 25

FWS releases draft recovery plan for Texas ayenia (also referred to as the Tamaulipan kidneypetal), listed as endangered and found in northern Mexico and southern Texas | Plan is here  (link in FR notice doesn’t work) | FWS Southwest Electronic Library

FWS receives endangered species, marine mammal permit applications

The Administrative Conference of the United States adopts four recommendations, addressing: Resolving FOIA Disputes Through Targeted ADR Strategies; Government in the Sunshine Act; Guidance in the Rulemaking Process; and “Ex Parte” Communications in Informal Rulemaking. | More

NMFS proposes regulations to implement Amendment 97 to the Fishery Management Plan for Groundfish of the Gulf of Alaska (FMP). If approved, Amendment 97 would limit Chinook salmon prohibited species catch (PSC) in Western and Central Gulf of Alaska (GOA) non-pollock trawl catcher/processor (C/P) and catcher vessel (CV) fisheries. | BiOp

Tuesday, June 24

NMFS issues permit to the NMFS Pacific Islands Fisheries Science Center (PIFSC), Hawaiian Monk Seal Research Program in Honolulu to conduct research and enhancement on Hawaiian monk seals (Monachus schauinslandi) | More

FWS lists Philippine cockatoo (Cacatua haematuropygia) and the yellow-crested cockatoo (C. sulphurea) as endangered, and the white cockatoo (C. alba) as threatened | Rulemaking docket

FWS proposes to add Reticulated Python, three Anaconda species, and the Boa Constrictor to the list of injurious wildlife species | Rulemaking docket

FWS asks for comments on recovery permit applications (Interior least tern)

Monday, June 23

FWS gathering information to prepare a 12-month finding on a petition to list the current classification of Humboldt marten (Martes caurina humboldtensis) as an endangered or threatened species | Docket |  Docket for 90-day finding

FWS to hold five public scoping meetings to help decide whether to prepare an EA or an EIS “in conjunction with an evaluation of [its] eagle management objectives.” | Eagle Scoping page | Meetings: July 22 in Sacramento; July 24 in Minneapolis; July 29 in Albuquerque; July 31 in Denver, and Aug. 7 in Washington, D.C.

NMFS receives application from USGS’s Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory of Columbia University (L–DEO), and National Science Foundation (NSF) for an Incidental Harassment Authorization (IHA) to take marine mammals, by harassment, incidental to conducting a marine geophysical (seismic) survey in the Atlantic Ocean off the Eastern Seaboard, August to September 2014 and April to August 2015.

NMFS issues permit to the Alaska SeaLife Center to conduct research on captive Steller sea lions (Eumetopias jubatus).

NMFS National Marine Mammal Laboratory applies for an amendment to Scientific Research Permit No. 13430-01.

NMFS issues Incidental Harassment Authorization (IHA) to Transcontinental Gas Pipe Line Company, LLC (Transco) to take marine mammals, by harassment, incidental to expanding a natural gas pipeline system off the coast of New York. | Application

Forest Service proposes to amend its internal directives for ski area concessions “by adding two clauses to the Special Uses Handbook, FSH 2709.11, chapter 50, to address water rights necessary for and that primarily support operation of ski areas on National Forest System (NFS) lands. A revised water rights clause for ski area permits is needed because the current water rights clause cannot be implemented as intended in many States and because the current clause does not ensure that sufficient water is available for operation of ski areas on NFS lands.”

NPS releases Record of Decision on Remote Vaccination Program To Reduce the Prevalence of Brucellosis in Yellowstone Bison, Record of Decision, Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming | FR notice

Friday, June 20

NMFS releases draft supplemental EA on potential effects of the operation of five Hatchery and Genetic Management Plans specifying the propagation of five species of salmon and steelhead in the Elwha River of Washington state | text | more

FWS reopens public comment period on the Sept. 26, 2013, proposed revised designation of critical habitat for the contiguous U.S. distinct population segment (DPS) of the Canada lynx | text

FWS receives applications to conduct certain activities with endangered species and/or marine mammals | text

Army Corps seeks applications to fill vacant stakeholder representative member positions on the Missouri River Recovery Implementation Committee |MRRIC page

Air Force issues “technical correction amendments” to its rule relating “to the Air Force process for compliance with [NEPA] and Executive Order (E.O.) 12114, Environmental Effects Abroad of Major Federal Actions.”

Thursday, June 19

FWS releases draft Comprehensive Conservation Plan (CCP) and Environmental Assessment (EA) for the San Diego National Wildlife Refuge (NWR) | more

FWS: Subsistence management regs for Alaska, 2014-2015 and 2015-2016

NMFS proposes management measures to implement Special Management Zones for five Delaware artificial reefs under the black sea bass provisions of the Summer Flounder, Scup, and Black Sea Bass Fishery Management Plan

Wednesday, June 18

FWS reopens comment period on proposed critical habitat for Oregon spotted frog (Rana pretiosa). FWS is proposing changes to four of the units, and has prepared a draft economic analysis on the proposal. | text

  • Docket for critical habitat proposal
  • Docket for proposed threatened listing

Tuesday, June 17

EPA, Corps reopen comment period until July 7 on CWA “waters of the U.S.” ag exemptions proposed rule

FWS establishes policy that covers procedures for accepting, using, and recognizing donations | Go here for policy |

FWS receives ES permit applications (Southwest region) | text

Federal Transit Administration, in cooperation with the Florida DOT, rescinds Notice of Intent (NOI) to prepare an EIS on Central Broward East-West Transit Analysis

Monday, June 16

FWS receives application for 10-year ITP for low-effect HCP (Morro shoulderband snail, San Luis Obispo Co.) | text | more

FWS releases final comprehensive conservation plan (CCP) and finding of no significant impact FONSI) for the EA for DeSoto and Boyer Chute National Wildlife Refuges | text | Docs here

FWS releases Classroom Guidelines for Preventing the Introduction and Spread of Aquatic Invasive Species (AIS) (“These voluntary guidelines are intended to be used by agencies and organizations to develop materials that inform educators and students about the risks of spreading aquatic invasive species, and to limit their spread via the disposal of unwanted live educational specimens (animals, plants, and microorganisms) in to local waters, including release into drains or flushing down toilets.” | text | English version | Aquatic Nuisance Species Task Force documents

NMFS corrects rule setting vessel speed restrictions to reduce chance of striking right whales by deleting sunset provision. In other words, there’s no expiration date on the rule. | text

Pacific Fishery Management Council transmits Amendment 18 to Pacific Coast salmon FMP. “Amendment 18 revises the description and identification of essential fish habitat (EFH) for salmon, based on the latest scientific information available. Amendment 18 also modifies the process for determining whether freshwater habitat above impassable barriers (e.g., dams) should be defined as EFH; designates habitat areas of particular concern; modifies the current information on fishing activities and potential measures to minimize their effects on EFH; and updates the list of non-fishing related activities that may adversely affect EFH and potential conservation and enhancement measures to minimize those effects.” | text | Pacific Fishery Management Council page

Friday, June 13

NOAA re-establishes process by which communities can nominate areas for national marine sanctuaries. Nomination packages will be posted on www.nominate.noaa.gov

NOAA will evaluate the Coastal Management Programs of Maryland and the Commonwealth of the Northern Marina Islands. The Maryland Coastal Management Program public meeting will be held on Tuesday, Aug. 5, at 5:30 p.m. local time at the Ocean Pines Library at 11107 Cathell Road, Berlin, Md. 21811

Thursday, June 12

NMFS plans to issue incidental take permit for three stocks of marine mammals listed as threatened or endangered under the Endangered Species Act (ESA) by the Hawaii deep-set and shallow-set longline fisheries | text

Wednesday, June 11

NMFS declines to list great hammerhead shark, concluding that the species is not made up of DPSs, and is not currently in danger of extinction throughout all or a significant portion of its range and is not likely to become so within the foreseeable future | text | more | status review (12-month finding)

FWS receives endangered species permit applications (captive-bred wildlife, sport-hunted bontebok)

Forest Service modifies boundaries for the Big Creek, Grandmother Mountain, Pinchot Butte, Roland Point, and Wonderful Peak Idaho Roadless Areas on the Idaho Panhandle National Forests to include lands acquired within and/or adjacent to these roadless areas.

Tuesday, June 10

FWS lists New Mexico meadow jumping mouse (Zapus hudsonius luteus) as endangered throughout its range in New Mexico, Arizona and Colorado. FWS said it will soon publish critical habitat designation for the species | text | Docket | More

FWS extends comment period until Aug. 6, schedules two public hearings on proposal to delist southern Selkirk Mountains population of woodland caribou (Rangifer tarandus caribou) | text | Docket

FWS releases draft revised maps for all John H. Chafee Coastal Barrier Resources System units in Maine, Maryland, New Jersey, North Carolina, Virginia, and one unit in New York | text | More

The Forest Service won’t prepare an EIS for the court-ordered removal of Green Mountain Lookout

BuRec and the Klamath Water and Power Agency, the lead state agency, will prepare a joint EIS/R for the implementation and administration of the On-Project Plan (OPP) for the Klamath Reclamation Project. The purpose of the OPP is to align water supply and demand for the OPP Plan Area as defined in the Klamath Basin Restoration Agreement for the Sustainability of Public and Trust Resources and Affected Communities. | more

Monday, June 9

FWS issues positive 90-day findings on petitions to list two species of tortoise on the island of Madagascar and one species of sloth endemic to a Panamian island | Text | Dockets: Flat-tailed tortoise | Spider tortoise | Pygmy three-toed sloth

FWS reopens and extends comment period for the 2/24/14 advance notice of proposed rulemaking and notice of intent to prepare an EIS for non-federal oil and gas development within the National Wildlife Refuge System published in the Federal Register | ANPRM | Docket | text of notice

Army Corps of Engineers Seattle District releases DEIS “to examine the incremental environmental risk, principally from vessel traffic, related to operation of the previously authorized and constructed North Wing of the BP Cherry Point dock.” | DEIS | Links to DEIS and appendices

FHwA provides notice of final federal agency actions on proposed transportation projects in Florida in order to limit legal claims. “A claim seeking judicial review of the federal agency actions on the listed highway projects will be barred unless the claim is filed on or before November 6, 2014. If the federal law that authorizes judicial review of a claim provides a time period of less than 150 days for filing such claim, then that shorter time period still applies.” (See the notice for links to more information on the projects.)

Federal Railroad Administration to prepare EIS on Baltimore & Potomac (B&P) Tunnel Project Along the Northeast Corridor (NEC) in Baltimore | More

NMFS issues Letter of Authorization to U.S. Navy to take three species of seals and sea lions incidental to missile launches at San Nicolas Island, Calif. | texthttp://www.nmfs.noaa.gov/pr/permits/incidental.htm#applications

BLM’s Rock Springs, Wyo., office to prepare EIS for the proposed Riley Ridge to Natrona Project | text of notice

BLM announces temporary closures (until 2016) for certain routes within the Hot Well Wildlife Tract, Owyhee County, Idaho, to protect a sensitive plant. | text

Friday, June 6

EPA requests comments on a proposed stipulated injunction that, among other things, would reinstitute streamside no-spray buffer zones to protect endangered or threatened Pacific salmon and steelhead in California, Oregon, and Washington. The stipulated injunction would settle litigation brought against EPA by the Northwest Center for Alternatives to Pesticides  and others in U.S. District Court in Washington State. These buffers were originally established by the same court in prior litigation brought against EPA by the Washington Toxics Coalition and others. | text | Docket | press release

FWS makes technical correction to Sonoma County tiger salamander critical habitat rule | text

FWS makes technical correction to CITES regulation | text

NMFS issues regulations under the Marine Mammal Protection Act (MMPA) to govern the unintentional taking of marine mammals incidental to missile launches from San Nicolas Island (SNI) from June 2014 through June 2019 | text

Thursday, June 5

Federal and state natural resource trustee agencies have prepared a Final Programmatic and Phase III Early Restoration Plan and Final Early Restoration Programmatic Environmental Impact Statement (Final Phase III ERP/PEIS) | Download the ERP/PEIS here and here | text

Wednesday, June 4

FWS: Migratory Bird Hunting: Meetings scheduled on proposals for 2014–15 hunting season

FWS receives recovery permit applications

Wildlife and Hunting Heritage Conservation Council to meet June 17 and 18 in Cody, Wyo.

Recreational Activities and Water Gardening: Voluntary Guidelines to Prevent the Introduction and Spread of Aquatic Invasive Species

NOAA: National Ocean Service’s Estuarine Reserves Division opens 30-day comment period for proposed revision to the Waquoit Bay, Massachusetts, National Estuarine Research Reserve Management Plan | more info

NMFS receives application from Glacier Bay National Park to take marine mammals by harassment incidental to conducting seabird research from July through September

Tuesday, June 3

NMFS proposes regs to implement Amendment 8 to the Fishery Management Plan for Live/Hard Bottom Habitats of the South Atlantic Region. If implemented, this rule would, in part, expand portions of the northern and western boundaries of the Oculina Bank habitat area of particular concern to protect coral reefs | text

FWS designating 2,170 acres in Plumas, Lassen and Sierra counties in northeastern California, and in Washoe and Douglas counties in northwestern Nevada as critical habitat for Ivesia webberi (Webber’s ivesia) | text | Docket

FWS lists Ivesia webberi (Webber’s ivesia) as threatened | text | Docket

FWS extends for 30 days the comment period on proposal to designate critical habitat for the bi-state population of greater sage grouse. Comment period will end 30 days from June 3. | text | Docket

North American Wetlands Conservation Council to meet June 26 in Saginaw to consider funding proposals | text

FWS receives recovery permit applications for species in California | text

Monday, June 2

DOJ announces proposed consent decree to resolve amended CWA complaint (U.S. v. Roberts, 09-812, M.D. Tenn.) against Richardson M. Roberts and Bucksnort R.R. Ranch, LLC, to obtain injunctive relief and civil penalties from the defendants for violating sections 301 and 404 of the Clean Water Act. Defendants must perform restoration work, conserve riparian areas, provide funding to benefit water quality in the Lower Duck River watershed, and pay a civil penalty. | Recently proposed consent decrees

NMFS to list five foreign species of sturgeon as endangered species: Acipenser naccarii (Adriatic sturgeon), and A. sturio (European sturgeon) in Western Europe, A. sinensis (Chinese sturgeon) in the Yangtze River basin, and A. mikadoi (Sakhalin sturgeon) and Huso dauricus (Kaluga sturgeon) in the Amur River Basin/Sea of Japan/Sea of Okhotsk region | text

NMFS Science Advisory Board to hold teleconference June 23 | text

Friday, May 30

EPA summarizes EIS’s it’s received for review | EPA NEPA page | EPA comment letters on EIS’s

FS releases EIS on proposed Smoky Canyon Mine, Panels F and G Lease and Mine Plan Modification Project; Caribou County, ID | more

FS begins assessment phase of the land management plan revision process for the Helena and Lewis and Clark National Forests | more

BLM releases EIS on proposed right-of-way amendment for the Blythe Solar Power Project, California | more

Thursday, May 29

FWS reopens comment period, releases draft economic analysis on proposal to designate critical habitat for Physaria globosa (Short’s bladderpod), Helianthus verticillatus (whorled sunflower), and Leavenworthia crassa (fleshy-fruit gladecress) | text | Docket

FWS receives ES, marine mammal permit applications | text

NMFS receives scientific research permit applications for take of anadromous fish | text

NPS releases final EIS for Fishery Management Plan for Biscayne National Park | text | more

Wednesday, May 28

FWS extends expiration dates for double-crested cormorant depredation orders to allow state and tribal resource management agencies to continue to manage DCCO problems and gather data on the effects of DCCO control actions | text | more | Corps DEIS on DCCO control | News release | Corps cormorant page

FWS receives T&E species permit applications | text

Department of the Interior plans to create the National Park Service “Planning, Environment and Public Comment (PEPC) System — NPS-23” system of records | text

FWS releases DEIS for Maricopa Sun Solar Complex Habitat Conservation Plan | | text | more

FHWA and the Utah Department of Transportation plan to renew and amend an existing MOU established pursuant to 23 U.S.C. 326 under which the FHWA has assigned to the state the FHWA’s responsibility for determining whether a project is categorically excluded from preparation of an environmental assessment or an EIS | more

BOEM will prepare EA to consider the environmental consequences associated with issuing commercial wind leases, associated site characterization activities (i.e., biological, archeological, geological and geophysical surveys and core samples), and approving site assessment activities on those leases within Outer Continental Shelf Offshore New York | more

Tuesday, May 27

FWS revises regs that implement the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES) by incorporating certain provisions adopted at the fourteenth and fifteenth meetings of the Conference of the Parties (CoP14 and CoP15) to CITES and clarifying and updating certain other provisions | text

BPA to prepare EIS on its decision whether to fund the Shoshone-Bannock Tribes of the Fort Hall Reservation of Idaho proposal to build and operate a hatchery for spring/summer chinook salmon in the Salmon River subbasin and Yellowstone cutthroat trout in the Upper Snake River subbasin on Fort Hall Reservation | more

Forest Service to prepare EIS on amendment to Tongass NFP | more

Advisory Committee on Climate Change and Natural Resource Science to meet June 11 and 12 | more

NMFS to prepare EA on Amendment 6 to 2006 Consolidated Atlantic Highly Migratory Species Fishery Management Plan

Monday, May 26: Memorial Day

Friday, May 23

EPA Science Advisory Board to hold public teleconference June 19 on “waters” connectivity report (more)

Thursday, May 22

Corps reestablishes charter for Chief of Engineers Environmental Advisory Board

FERC issues EIS for Downeast LNG project | text

The Pike and San Isabel National Forests Cimarron and Comanche National Grasslands (PSICC) propose to conduct forest restoration activities on 25,000 acres within the 67,000 acre Upper Monument Creek (UMC) analysis area | Project web site

NMFS renews an emergency action that implemented, among other measures, mandatory monitoring (VMS) and observer requirements (pre-trip notification and a 100% deep water closure zone unless a NMFS-certified observer was on board) in the California thresher shark/swordfish drift gillnet (mesh size >=14 inches) (DGN) fishery during the August 15, 2013 to January 31, 2014 fishing season, and would have immediately shut down the fishery for the calendar year in the event of a sperm whale interaction in the DGN fishery | Docket

NPS releases DEIS for the Off-Road Vehicle Management Plan (Plan), Cape Lookout National Seashore, North Carolina

Wednesday, May 21

FWS reopening public comment period on the October 22, 2013, proposed designation of critical habitat for Agave eggersiana, Gonocalyx concolor, and Varronia rupicola

FWS releases final recovery plan for Golden sedge, a species endemic to the coastal plain in North Carolina

NOAA’s Office of Ocean and Coastal Resource Management will evaluate the performance of the Apalachicola National Estuarine Research Reserve | text

Tuesday, May 20

FWS adopts as a final rule an interim rule to list the southern white rhino (Ceratotherium simum simum) | text

Endangered species permit applications received (FWS) | text

Information Collection Request Sent to the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) for Approval; National Wildlife Refuge Special Use Permit Applications and Reports (More info)

NMFS asks for comment on petition to designate Sakhalin Bay-Amur River stock of beluga whales (Delphinapterus leucas) as a depleted stock under the Marine Mammal Protection Act (MMPA) | text

NMFS receives endangered species permit applications

NMFS receives endangered species permit applications

Corps’ Environmental Advisory Board to meet (more)

Monday, May 19

FWS receives incidental take permit application for low-effect HCP for Morro shoulderband snail (Los Osos, San Luis Obispo Co., Calif.) | text

FWS receives incidental take permit application for low-effect HCP for Morro shoulderband snail (Los Osos, San Luis Obispo Co., Calif.) | text (different notices, both single-family homes)

FWS releases final comprehensive conservation plan (CCP) and finding of no significant impact (FONSI) for environmental assessment (EA) prepared on the CCP for Quivira National Wildlife Refuge | text

Agency Information Collection Activities: Proposals, Submissions, and Approvals: Marine Mammal Marking, Tagging, and Reporting Certificates, etc. | text

DOJ: Proposed consent decree in CWA case, U.S. v. Cemex Concretos Inc. and Cemex de Puerto Rico Inc. (14-1386, District Ct., Puerto Rico) (DOJ ENRD’s consent decree site)

Friday, May 16

No FWS notices

Thursday, May 15

FWS releases EIS/CCP on Chincoteague NWR and Wallops Island NWR (More info here) (text)

FWS receives T&E species permit applications | text

Trinity Adaptive Management Working Group meeting scheduled | text

Wednesday, May 14

FWS reopens comment period for 60 days on Oct. 16, 2012, proposal to designate critical habitat for the Neosho mucket (Lampsilis rafinesqueana) and rabbitsfoot (Quadrula cylindrical cylindrica) mussels (text)

FWS reopens comment period, schedules public hearing in North Carolina on proposal to list red knot (Calidris canutus rufa) as threatened (text)

FWS begins 5-year status reviews of Little Colorado Spinedace, Sentry Milk-vetch, Siler Pincushion Cactus, slender rush-pea, and Yuma clapper rail, in the Southwest Region (text)

FWS releases draft comprehensive conservation plan and environmental assessment (CCP/EA) for Great Swamp National Wildlife Refuge, located in Morris County, New Jersey, for public review and comment (text)

Tuesday, May 13

No FWS notices. See the link above for all FR notices for May 13.

Monday, May 12

FWS, NMFS issue three critical habitat proposals

  • Making changes to the way CH is designated: PDF | text | Docket
  • Altering definition of “destruction or adverse modification” of CH: PDF | text | Docket
  • Draft policy on implementing CH: PDF | text | Docket

FWS imposes interim suspension on importation of sport-hunted African elephant trophies taken in Zimbabwe during the 2014 season (on April 17, 2014, the service revised this finding, primarily to clarify that the suspension applied only to elephants hunted on or after April 4, 2014).

Go here for NMFS endangered species permit applications

Friday, May 9

FWS reopens comment period on proposal to list Arabis georgiana (Georgia Rockcress) as threatened, and designate critical habitat | Docket for listing | Docket for critical habitat | text

FWS announces two public hearings on proposal to list California/Nevada DPS of greater sage-grouse as threatened, issue a special rule under Section 4(d), and designate critical habitat. The first hearing will be in Minden, Nev., on May 28, from 6-9 p.m. (Pacific Time), and the second will be in Bishop, Calif., on May 29, from 6-9 p.m. (Pacific Time) | Docket | text

Thursday, May 8

FWS proposes to revise the previously proposed critical habitat for Bartram’s scrub-hairstreak and the Florida leafwing by including hydric pine flatwoods in their primary constituent elements and by increasing the size of the Everglades National Park Unit for each butterfly to 7,994 acres | Docket | text

FWS proposes to amend the current listing of the southern Selkirk Mountains population of woodland caribou by defining the Southern Mountain Caribou DPS, which includes the currently listed southern Selkirk Mountains population of woodland caribou, and proposes to designate the status of the Southern Mountain Caribou DPS as threatened under the Act. “If we finalize this rule as proposed, the Southern Mountain Caribou DPS will be listed as threatened under the Act.” | Docket | text

FWS receives endangered species permit applications | text

NMFS receives permit applications for take of anadromous fish

Wednesday, May 7

FWS, in cooperation with the State of Alaska, will reestablish the wood bison, a federally threatened species, in historical habitat in central Alaska | Docket | text

Tuesday, May 6

Fish and Wildlife Service

RULES
Endangered and Threatened Wildlife and Plants:
Leavenworthia exigua var. laciniata (Kentucky Glade Cress); Critical Habitat ,
25689–25707 [2014–10050] [TEXT]  [PDF]
Leavenworthia exigua var. laciniata (Kentucky Glade Cress); Threatened Status ,
25683–25688 [2014–10049] [TEXT]  [PDF]
Revision of Critical Habitat for Salt Creek Tiger Beetle ,
26014–26038 [2014–10051] [TEXT]  [PDF]
PROPOSED RULES
Endangered and Threatened Wildlife and Plants:
Designation of Critical Habitat for Diplacus vandenbergensis (Vandenberg Monkeyflower) ,
25797–25806 [2014–10053] [TEXT]  [PDF]
Penstemon grahamii (Graham’s beardtongue) and Penstemon scariosus var. albifluvis (White River beardtongue); Critical Habitat ,
25806–25813 [2014–10274] [TEXT]  [PDF]
NOTICES
Endangered and Threatened Wildlife and Plants:
Application for Incidental Take Permit; Low-Effect Habitat Conservation Plan and Associated Documents, Charlotte County, FL ,
25882–25883 [2014–10334] [TEXT]  [PDF]
Initiation of 5-Year Status Reviews of Nine Species in the Mountain–Prairie Region ,
25883–25885 [2014–10337] [TEXT]  [PDF]
Endangered Species Recovery Permit Applications ,
25885–25886 [2014–10310] [TEXT]  [PDF]
Meetings:
Advisory Council on Wildlife Trafficking ,
25886–25887 [2014–10295] [TEXT]  [PDF]
 National Marine Fisheries Service
Small Takes of Marine Mammals Incidental to Specified Activities:
Cape Wind High Resolution Survey in Nantucket Sound, MA ,
25835–25844 [2014–10296] [TEXT]  [PDF]

Monday, May 5

Endangered and Threatened Wildlife and Plants:
Initiation of a 5-Year Status Review of the Short-tailed Albatross ,
25613–25614 [2014–10181] [TEXT]  [PDF]

Friday, May 2

FWS sends ICR on experimental populations to OMB for approval

FWS determines that reclassification of Astragalus jaegerianus (Lane Mountain milk-vetch) is not warranted | Docket | text

Thursday, May 1

FWS receives 5-year ITP application from James Mueller, District Manager of the San Lorenzo Valley Water District, for potential “take” of the endangered Mount Hermon June Beetle and Zayante band-winged grasshopper, and the threatened California red-legged frog, which is likely to occur incidental to the construction and maintenance of two water pump stations and an intertie pipeline connection on three parcels in central Santa Cruz County, California | More info here | text

Wednesday, April 30

FWS receives applications for endangered species, marine mammal permits (pdf)

Tuesday, April 29

FWS lists Sierra Nevada yellow-legged frog and the northern distinct population segment (DPS) of the mountain yellow-legged frog (mountain yellow-legged frog populations that occur north of the Tehachapi Mountains) as endangered, and the Yosemite toad as threatened | Docket | text

Monday, April 28

NEPA: Forest Service to prepare EIS on proposal “to commercially harvest approximately 2,134 acres, reduce hazardous fuels through non-commercial thinning on ∼588 acres, and implement understory prescribe fire on ∼80 to ∼679 acres within the McKenzie Bridge Wildland-Urban Interface.” (Willamette NF) Required by district court decision.

Eldorado National Forest to prepare EIS to reforest portions of the Power Fire as well as manage existing plantations within the Power Fire.

FS to prepare EIS  on revised forest plan for Francis Marion NF in South Carolina | More

Friday, April 25

Collado Drive Habitat Conservation Plan, renewal of ITP

Priority List and Approval for Conservation Projects, Multistate Conservation Grant Program (pub date 4/25)

Thursday, April 24

FWS releases CCP/FONSI on 15-year plan for Iowa Wetland Management District (more) (text)

Wednesday, April 23

FWS to prepare EA on revised CCP for Florida Panther National Wildlife Refuge, Collier County, FL | text

Tuesday, April 22

FWS establishes a Friends policy, “the purpose of which is to assist service employees in achieving our mission more efficiently and effectively by increasing community involvement through partnerships with nonprofit Friends organizations” |  text | more

Monday, April 21

FWS reopens public comment period on reconsideration of final rule listing slickspot peppergrass (Lepidium papilliferum) as threatened. “We published the reconsideration of the final rule in response to the Idaho District Court’s remand because the Court asked us to reconsider the definition of the ‘foreseeable future’ in regard to this particular species; Docket | text

FWS reopens public comment period on revised proposed rule to designate critical habitat for slickspot peppergrass (Lepidium papilliferum) (text)

FWS releases stock assessment report for Pacific walrus and northern sea otters | text

Friday, April 18

FWS receives application from Santa Clara, Calif., doing business as Silicon Valley Power, for a 30-year incidental take permit for five species; (web site) (text)

FWS receives recovery permit applications

Thursday, April 17

Wednesday, April 16

FWS releases EA evaluating “impacts of, and alternatives to the proposed Oil and Gas Industry Conservation Plan (ICP) for incidental take of the federally listed American burying beetle resulting from activities associated with geophysical exploration (seismic), development, extraction, or transport of crude oil, natural gas, and/or other petroleum products, and maintenance, operation, repair, and decommissioning of oil and gas pipelines and well field infrastructure. The proposed ICP Planning Area consists of 45 counties in Oklahoma. Individual oil and gas companies would apply for Endangered Species Act (ESA) permits for incidental take associated with activities covered in the ICP and agree to comply with the terms and conditions of the ICP. (text)  (more info)

NMFS has received an application from BP Exploration (Alaska) Inc. (BP) for an Incidental Harassment Authorization (IHA) to take marine mammals, by harassment, incidental to conducting a shallow geohazard survey in Foggy Island Bay, Beaufort Sea, Alaska, during the 2014 open water season. Pursuant to the Marine Mammal Protection Act (MMPA), NMFS is requesting comments on its proposal to issue an IHA to BP to incidentally take, by Level B harassment only, marine mammals during the specified activity (text) (More)

Tuesday, April 15

FWS receives application for 5-year ITP for “take” of the federally endangered Mount Hermon June beetle likely to occur incidental to the construction of a single-family residence, garage, and associated landscaping/infrastructure on an existing legal parcel in Bonny Doon, Santa Cruz County, Calif. (text)

NMFS has received an application from BP Exploration (Alaska) Inc. (BP) for an Incidental Harassment Authorization (IHA) to take marine mammals, by harassment, incidental to conducting an ocean-bottom sensor seismic survey in Prudhoe Bay, Beaufort Sea, Alaska, during the 2014 open water season. Pursuant to the Marine Mammal Protection Act (MMPA), NMFS is requesting comments on its proposal to issue an IHA to BP to incidentally take, by Level B harassment only, marine mammals during the specified activity (PDF)

Monday, April 14

NMFS  announces “revisions to the Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) to clarify and update the descriptions of species under NMFS’ jurisdiction that are currently listed as threatened or endangered under the Endangered Species Act of 1973 (ESA). Revisions include format changes to our lists of threatened and endangered species, revisions to regulatory language explaining our lists, updates to the descriptions of certain listed West Coast salmonid species to add or remove hatchery stocks consistent with our recently completed 5- year reviews under ESA section 4(c)(2), and corrections to regulatory text to fix inadvertent errors from previous rulemakings, update cross- references, and provide consistent language. We are not adding or removing any species to or from our lists, changing the status of any listed species, or adding or revising any critical habitat designation.” More information here and here | Text | FR page for the rule

Friday, April 11

FWS corrects 2/24/14 final rule listing Georgetown salamander (Eurycea naufragia) and the Salado salamander (Eurycea chisholmensis). “[W]e inadvertently left out the “when listed” number in the table entry for each of the two species” (text)

NMFS releases final PEIS for Hawaiian monk seal recovery | Go here for the PEIS | text

“Despite measures taken to save the monk seal, the species is not showing signs of recovery. In the [Northwestern Hawaiian Islands], young seals are continuing to starve to death, nursing and newly weaned pups are being killed by sharks, seals are getting entangled in marine debris, and sea level rise threatens terrestrial habitats. Low juvenile survival over the past two decades is the primary cause of the population’s decline. There is insufficient recruitment into the breeding population, and the population decline will likely continue without additional intervention.”

Thursday, April 10

FWS lists lesser prairie-chicken (Tympanuchus pallidicinctus) as threatened | Docket | text

FWS issues special rule for lesser prairie chicken  |  Docket  |  text

FWS reopens comment period on proposal to list yellow-billed cuckoo in the western portion of the United States, Canada, and Mexico (western yellow-billed cuckoo) as a threatened DPS    Docket | text

Wednesday, April 9

FWS designates total of 1,607 acres of critical habitat for three subspecies of the Mazama pocket gopher (the Olympia pocket gopher, Thomomys mazama pugetensis; the Tenino pocket gopher, T. m. tumuli; and the Yelm pocket gopher, T. m. yelmensis; Docket | text

FWS lists four subspecies of the Mazama pocket gopher as threatened, with a special rule under Section 4(d). The gophers are found in Thurston and Pierce counties in Washington state: The Olympia pocket gopher (Thomomys mazama pugetensis), Roy Prairie pocket gopher (T. m. glacialis), Tenino pocket gopher (T. m. tumuli), and Yelm pocket gopher (T. m. yelmensis); Docket | text

Tuesday, April 8

FWS reopens public comment period on 6/20/13 proposed designation of critical habitat for the New Mexico meadow jumping mouse (Zapus hudsonius luteus). Draft economic analysis and draft EA available; Docket (text)

FWS reopens comment period until June 9 on proposal to list the bi-state DPS of greater sage-grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus) as threatened, and designate CH, with a special rule. Public hearings announced. FWS delays final determination for six months due to “substantial disagreement regarding the sufficiency or accuracy of the available data relevant to the proposed listing.” Final decision will be made by April 28, 2015; Docket (listing) and docket (critical habitat) (text)

Monday, April 7

City of Rialto, Calif., applies for three-year incidental take permit authorizing take of the endangered Delhi Sands flower-loving fly in the course of routine activities associated with the construction activities associated with the widening of San Bernardino Avenue, Riverside Avenue, and Willow Avenue | No docket listed | text

Vintage Properties applies for ITP to take Preble’s meadow jumping mouse in connection with proposed Kettle Creek Ranch residential development in El Paso County, Colo. | Get HCP here | FR text

More from 2014 (latest first)

Reopening comment period until 5/19/2014 on proposal to list rufa red knot as threatened (4/4/14) (Docket) (text) (Two public hearings scheduled) (Press release)

HCP: Low-effect plan proposed for California red-legged frog in Sonoma County (4/4/14) (More) (text)

Island night lizard removed from threatened list, p. 18190-210 (4/1/14) (Docket)

Positive 90-day finding on petition to list Alexander Archipelago Wolf as threatened or endangered, p. 17993-5 Docket ID: FWS-R7-ES-2012-0093 (3/31/14) (text) (CBD threatens to sue)

12-month finding and proposal to downlist the Arroyo Toad (Anaxyrus Californicus) (p. 17106-25 Docket ID: FWS-R8-ES-2014-0007   (3/27/14) (text)

FWS reinstates regulation excluding U.S. captive-bred scimitar-horned Oryx, Addax, and Dama Gazelle from certain prohibitions, p. 15250-2  Docket ID: FWS-HQ-IA-2014-0010 (3/19/14) (text)

Proposal to downlist Tidewater goby, 12-month finding, p. 14339-62  Docket ID: FWS-R8-ES-2014-0001  (3/13/14) (text)

Reopening of comment period on proposal to revise critical habitat for the for the Salt Creek Tiger Beetle, p. 14206-11  Docket ID: FWS-R6-ES-2013-0068) (3/13/14) (text)

Critical habitat designated for jaguar, p. 12571-12654, Docket ID: FWS-R2-ES-2012-0042 (3/5/14) (text)

Comment period reopened for proposal to designate critical habitat for the Sharpnose Shiner and Smalleye Shiner, p. 12138-42  Docket ID: FWS-R2-ES-2013-0008 (3/4/14) (text)

Proposal to remove Oenothera avita ssp. eurekensis and Swallenia alexandrae from the list of endangered and threatened plants, p. 11053-73  Docket ID: FWS-R8-ES-2013-0131 (2/27/14) (text)

Georgetown Salamander and Salado Salamander designated as threatened throughout their ranges, p. 10235-93, Docket ID: FWS-R2-ES-2012-0035  (2/24/14) (text)

Proposed special rule for the Georgetown Salamander, p. 10077-80, Docket ID: FWS-R2-ES-2014-0008) (2/24/14) (text)

Reopening of comment period on proposed revision to critical habitat for Ivesia webberi (Webber’s Ivesia) (p. 8668-77, Docket ID: FWS-R8-ES-2013-0080) (2/13/14) (text)

Proposal to remove Modoc sucker from list of threatened species; notice of availability of draft post-delisting monitoring plan (p. 8656-7, Docket ID: FWS-R8-ES-2013-0133) (2/13/14) (text)

Comment period reopened on proposal to revise critical habitat designation for Lepidium papilliferum (Slickspot peppergrass), p. 8402-13 Docket ID: FWS-R1-ES-2010-0071 (2/12/14) (text)

Comment period reopened on proposal to delist Hawaiian Hawk; Docket (2/12/14, p. 8413-6) (text)

Comment requested on reconsideration of final rule to list slickspot peppergrass throughout its range, p. 8416-28 Docket ID: FWS-R1-ES-2013-0117  (2/12/14) (text)

Reopening of comment period on gray wolf (Canis lupus) delisting proposal and proposal to maintain protections for Mexican wolf (Canis lupus baileyi), p. 7627-9 Docket ID: FWS-HQ-ES-2013-0073) (2/10/14) (text)

Proposal to remove Oregon Chub from the list of endangered and threatened wildlife, availability of draft post-delisting monitoring plan, p. 7136-52 Docket ID: FWS-R1-ES-2014-0002 (2/6/14) (text)

FWS extends by six months its final decision on whether to list the Distinct Population Segment of the North American wolverine as threatened in the lower 48, p. 6874-5  Docket ID: FWS-R6-ES-2012-0107 (2/5/14) (text)

Comment period reopened on critical habitat proposal for Spring Pygmy Sunfish, p. 6871-4 Docket ID: FWS-R4-ES-2013-0010 (2/5/14) (text)

Comment period reopened on proposal to list the Lesser Prairie-Chicken as threatened with a special rule, p. 4652-4 Docket ID: FWS-R2-ES-2012-0071 (1/29/14) (text)

Positive 90-day findings on five petitions; status reviews begun, p. 3559-62 (1/22/14) (text)

Corrections to rules adding species to the list of endangered wildlife, p. 2380-2 Docket ID: FWS-R4-ES-2011-0043, FWS-R2-ES-2013-0001, FWS-R4-ES-2013-0026 (1/14/14) (Text)

Comment period reopened on proposed endangered status for the Sierra Nevada yellow-legged frog and the Northern Distinct Population Segment of the Mountain yellow-legged frog, and threatened status for the Yosemite Toad; also, designation of critical habitat, p. 1805-10 Docket ID: FWS-R8-ES-2012-0100 (1/10/14) (text)

6-month extension of final determination for the proposed listing of the Zuni Bluehead sucker as an endangered species, p. 1615-9 Docket ID: FWS-R2-ES-2012-0101 (1/9/14) (text)

Comment period reopened on proposed CH designation for Leavenworthia exigua var. laciniata, p. 796-800 Docket ID: FWS-R4-ES-2013-0015 (1/7/14) (text)

Comment period reopened on proposal to list as endangered the Georgetown Salamander and Salado Salamander, p. 800-2 Docket ID: FWS-R2-ES-2012-0035 (1/7/14) (text)

Designation of critical habitat for Chromolaena frustrata (Cape Sable Thoroughwort), p. 1551-90 Docket ID: FWS-R4-ES-2013-0029 (1/8/14) (Text)

Author info

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