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United States Regulations
18 CFR PART 380—REGULATIONS IMPLEMENTING THE NATIONAL ENVIRONMENTAL POLICY ACT
Title 18: Conservation of Power and Water Resources
PART 380—REGULATIONS IMPLEMENTING THE NATIONAL ENVIRONMENTAL POLICY ACT
Authority: 42 U.S.C. 4321–4370a, 7101–7352; E.O. 12009, 3 CFR 1978 Comp., p. 142.
Source: Order 486, 52 FR 47910, Dec. 17, 1987, unless otherwise noted.
§ 380.1 Purpose.
The regulations in this part implement the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission's procedures under the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969. These regulations supplement the regulations of the Council on Environmental Quality, 40 CFR parts 1500 through 1508 (1986). The Commission will comply with the regulations of the Council on Environmental Quality except where those regulations are inconsistent with the statutory requirements of the Commission.
§ 380.2 Definitions and terminology.
For purposes of this part—
(a) Categorical exclusion means a category of actions described in §380.4, which do not individually or cumulatively have a significant effect on the human environment and which the Commission has found to have no such effect and for which, therefore, neither an environmental assessment nor an environmental impact statement is required. The Commission may decide to prepare environmental assessments for the reasons stated in §380.4(b).
(b) Commission means the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission.
(c) Council means the Council on Environmental Quality.
(d) Environmental assessment means a concise public document for which the Commission is responsible that serves to:
(1) Briefly provide sufficient evidence and analysis for determining whether to prepare an environmental impact statement or a finding of no significant impact.
(2) Aid the Commission's compliance with NEPA when no environmental impact statement is necessary.
(3) Facilitate preparation of a statement when one is necessary. Environmental assessments must include brief discussions of the need for the proposal, of alternatives as required by section 102(2)(E) of NEPA, of the environmental impacts of the proposed action and alternatives, and a listing of agencies and persons consulted.
(e) Environmental impact statement (EIS) means a detailed written statement as required by section 102(2)(C) of NEPA. DEIS means a draft EIS and FEIS means a final EIS.
(f) Environmental report or ER means that part of an application submitted to the Commission by an applicant for authorization of a proposed action which includes information concerning the environment, the applicant's analysis of the environmental impact of the action, or alternatives to the action required by this or other applicable statutes or regulations.
(g) Finding of no significant impact (FONSI) means a document by the Commission briefly presenting the reason why an action, not otherwise excluded by §380.4, will not have a significant effect on the human environment and for which an environmental impact statement therefore will not be prepared. It must include the environmental assessment or a summary of it and must note other environmental documents related to it. If the assessment is included, the FONSI need not repeat any of the discussion in the assessment but may incorporate it by reference.
§ 380.3 Environmental information to be supplied by an applicant.
(a) An applicant must submit information as follows:
(1) For any proposed action identified in §§380.5 and 380.6, and environmental report with the proposal as prescribed in paragraph (c) of this section.
(2) For any proposal not identified in paragraph (a)(1) of this section, any environmental information that the Commission may determine is necessary for compliance with these regulations, the regulations of the Council, NEPA and other Federal laws such as the Endangered Species Act, the National Historic Preservation Act or the Coastal Zone Management Act.
(b) An applicant must also:
(1) Provide all necessary or relevant information to the Commission;
(2) Conduct any studies that the Commission staff considers necessary or relevant to determine the impact of the proposal on the human environment and natural resources;
(3) Consult with appropriate Federal, regional, State, and local agencies during the planning stages of the proposed action to ensure that all potential environmental impacts are identified. (The specific requirements for consultation on hydropower projects are contained in §4.38 and §16.8 of this chapter and in section 4(a) of the Electric Consumers Protection Act, Pub. L. No. 99–495, 100 Stat. 1243, 1246 (1986));
(4) Submit applications for all Federal and State approvals as early as possible in the planning process; and
(5) Notify the Commission staff of all other Federal actions required for completion of the proposed action so that the staff may coordinate with other interested Federal agencies.
(c) Content of an applicant's environmental report for specific proposals—1) Hydropower projects. The information required for specfic project applications under part 4 or 16 of this chapter.
(2) Natural gas projects. (i) For any application filed under the Natural Gas Act for any proposed action identified in §§380.5 or 380.6, except for prior notice filings under §157.208, as described in §380.5(b), the information identified in §380.12 and Appendix A of this part.
(ii) For prior notice filings under §157.208, the report described by §157.208(c)(11) of this chapter.
[Order 486, 52 FR 47910, Dec. 17, 1987, as amended by Order 533, 56 FR 23155, May 20, 1991; Order 603, 64 FR 26611, May 14, 1999]
§ 380.4 Projects or actions categorically excluded.
(a) General rule. Except as stated in paragraph (b) of this section, neither an environmental assessment nor an environmental impact statement will be prepared for the following projects or actions:
(1) Procedural, ministerial, or internal administrative and management actions, programs, or decisions, including procurement, contracting, personnel actions, correction or clarification of filings or orders, and acceptance, rejection and dismissal of filings;
(2)(i) Reports or recommendations on legislation not initiated by the Commission, and
(ii) Proposals for legislation and promulgation of rules that are clarifying, corrective, or procedural, or that do not substantially change the effect of legislation or regulations being amended;
(3) Compliance and review actions, including investigations (jurisdictional or otherwise), conferences, hearings, notices of probable violation, show cause orders, and adjustments under section 502(c) of the Natural Gas Policy Act of 1978 (NGPA);
(4) Review of grants or denials by the Department of Energy (DOE) of any adjustment request, and review of contested remedial orders issued by DOE;
(5) Information gathering, analysis, and dissemination;
(6) Conceptual or feasibility studies;
(7) Actions concerning the reservation and classification of United States lands as water power sites and other actions under section 24 of the Federal Power Act;
(8) Transfers of water power project licenses and transfers of exemptions under Part I of the Federal Power Act and Part 9 of this chapter;
(9) Issuance of preliminary permits for water power projects under Part I of the Federal Power Act and Part 4 of this chapter;
(10) Withdrawals of applications for certificates under the Natural Gas Act, or for water power project preliminary permits, exemptions, or licenses under Part I of the Federal Power Act and Part 4 of this chapter;
(11) Actions concerning annual charges or headwater benefits, charges for water power projects under Parts 11 and 13 of this chapter and establishment of fees to be paid by an applicant for a license or exemption required to meet the terms and conditions of section 30(c) of the Federal Power Act;
(12) Approval for water power projects under Part I of the Federal Power Act, of “as built” or revised drawings or exhibits that propose no changes to project works or operations or that reflect changes that have previously been approved or required by the Commission;
(13) Surrender and amendment of preliminary permits, and surrender of water power licenses and exemptions where no project works exist or ground disturbing activity has occurred and amendments to water power licenses and exemptions that do not require ground disturbing activity or changes to project works or operation;
(14) Exemptions for small conduit hydroelectric facilities as defined in §4.30(b)(26) of this chapter under Part I of the Federal Power Act and Part 4 of this chapter;
(15) Electric rate filings submitted by public utilities under sections 205 and 206 of the Federal Power Act, the establishment of just and reasonable rates, and confirmation, approval, and disapproval of rate filings submitted by Federal power marketing agencies under the Pacific Northwest Electric Power Planning and Conservation Act, the Department of Energy Organization Act, and DOE Delegation Order No. 0204–108.
(16) Approval of actions under sections 4(b), 203, 204, 301, 304, and 305 of the Federal Power Act relating to issuance and purchase of securities, acquisition or disposition of property, merger, interlocking directorates, jurisdictional determinations and accounting orders;
(17) Approval of electrical interconnections and wheeling under sections 202(b), 210, 211, and 212 of the Federal Power Act, that would not entail:
(i) Construction of a new substation or expansion of the boundaries of an existing substation;
(ii) Construction of any transmission line that operates at more than 115 kilovolts (KV) and occupies more than ten miles of an existing right-of-way; or
(iii) Construction of any transmission line more than one mile long if located on a new right-of-way;
(18) Approval of changes in land rights for water power projects under Part I of the Federal Power Act and Part 4 of this chapter, if no construction or change in land use is either proposed or known by the Commission to be contemplated for the land affected;
(19) Approval of proposals under Part I of the Federal Power Act and Part 4 of this chapter to authorize use of water power project lands or waters for gas or electric utility distribution lines, radial (sub-transmission) lines, communications lines and cables, storm drains, sewer lines not discharging into project waters, water mains, piers, landings, boat docks, or similar structures and facilities, landscaping or embankments, bulkheads, retaining walls, or similar shoreline erosion control structures;
(20) Action on applications for exemption under section 1(c) of the Natural Gas Act;
(21) Approvals of blanket certificate applications and prior notice filings under §157.204 and §§157.209 through 157.218 of this chapter;
(22) Approvals of blanket certificate applications under §§284.221 through 284.224 of this chapter;
(23) Producers' applications for the sale of gas filed under §§157.23 through 157.29 of this chapter;
(24) Approval under section 7 of the Natural Gas Act of taps, meters, and regulating facilities located completely within an existing natural gas pipeline right-of-way or compressor station if company records show the land use of the vicinity has not changed since the original facilities were installed, and no significant nonjurisdictional facilities would be constructed in association with construction of the interconnection facilities;
(25) Review of natural gas rate filings, including any curtailment plans other than those specified in §380.5(b)(5), and establishment of rates for transportation and sale of natural gas under sections 4 and 5 of the Natural Gas Act and sections 311 and 401 through 404 of the Natural Gas Policy Act of 1978;
(26) Review of approval of oil pipeline rate filings under Parts 340 and 341 of this chapter;
(27) Sale, exchange, and transportation of natural gas under sections 4, 5 and 7 of the Natural Gas Act that requires no construction of facilities;
(28) Abandonment in place of a minor natural gas pipeline (short segments of buried pipe of 6-inch inside diameter or less), or abandonment by removal of minor surface facilities such as metering stations, valves, and taps under section 7 of the Natural Gas Act so long as appropriate erosion control and site restoration takes place;
(29) Abandonment of service under any gas supply contract pursuant to section 7 of the Natural Gas Act;
(30) Approval of filing made in compliance with the requirements of a certificate for a natural gas project under section 7 of the Natural Gas Act or a preliminary permit, exemption, license, or license amendment order for a water power project under Part I of the Federal Power Act;
(31) Abandonment of facilities by sale that involves only minor or no ground disturbance to disconnect the facilities from the system;
(32) Conversion of facilities from use under the NGPA to use under the NGA;
(33) Construction or abandonment of facilities constructed entirely in Federal offshore waters that has been approved by the Minerals Management Service and the Corps of Engineers, as necessary;
(34) Abandonment or construction of facilities on an existing offshore platform;
(35) Abandonment, construction or replacement of a facility (other than compression) solely within an existing building within a natural gas facility (other than LNG facilities), if it does not increase the noise or air emissions from the facility, as a whole; and
(36) Conversion of compression to standby use if the compressor is not moved, or abandonment of compression if the compressor station remains in operation.
(b) Exceptions to categorical exclusions. (1) In accordance with 40 CFR 1508.4, the Commission and its staff will independently evaluate environmental information supplied in an application and in comments by the public. Where circumstances indicate that an action may be a major Federal action significantly affecting the quality of the human environment, the Commission:
(i) May require an environmental report or other additional environmental information, and
(ii) Will prepare an environmental assessment or an environmental impact statement.
(2) Such circumstances may exist when the action may have an effect on one of the following:
(i) Indian lands;
(ii) Wilderness areas;
(iii) Wild and scenic rivers;
(v) Units of the National Park System, National Refuges, or National Fish Hatcheries;
(vi) Anadromous fish or endangered species; or
(vii) Where the environmental effects are uncertain.
However, the existence of one or more of the above will not automatically require the submission of an environmental report or the preparation of an environmental assessment or an environmental impact statement.
[Order 486, 52 FR 47910, Dec. 17, 1987, as amended at 53 FR 8177, Mar. 14, 1988; Order 486-B, 53 FR 26437, July 13, 1988; 54 FR 48740, Nov. 27, 1989; Order 603, 64 FR 26611, May 14, 1999; Order 609, 64 FR 57392, Oct. 25, 1999]
§ 380.5 Actions that require an environmental assessment.
(a) An environmental assessment will normally be prepared first for the actions identified in this section. Depending on the outcome of the environmental assessment, the Commission may or may not prepare an environmental impact statement. However, depending on the location or scope of the proposed action, or the resources affected, the Commission may in specific circumstances proceed directly to prepare an environmental impact statement.
(b) The projects subject to an environmental assessment are as follows:
(1) Except as identified in §§380.4, 380.6 and 2.55 of this chapter, authorization for the site of new gas import/export facilities under DOE Delegation No. 0204–112 and authorization under section 7 of the Natural Gas Act for the construction, replacement, or abandonment of compression, processing, or interconnecting facilities, onshore and offshore pipelines, metering facilities, LNG peak-shaving facilities, or other facilities necessary for the sale, exchange, storage, or transportation of natural gas;
(2) Prior notice filings under §157.208 of this chapter for the rearrangement of any facility specified in §§157.202 (b)(3) and (6) of this chapter or the acquisition, construction, or operation of any eligible facility as specified in §§157.202 (b)(2) and (3) of this chapter;
(3) Abandonment or reduction of natural gas service under section 7 of the Natural Gas Act unless excluded under §380.4 (a)(21), (28) or (29);
(4) Except as identified in §380.6, conversion of existing depleted oil or natural gas fields to underground storage fields under section 7 of the Natural Gas Act.
(5) New natural gas curtailment plans, or any amendment to an existing curtailment plan under section 4 of the Natural Gas Act and sections 401 through 404 of the Natural Gas Policy Act of 1978 that has a major effect on an entire pipeline system;
(6) Licenses under Part I of the Federal Power Act and part 4 of this chapter for construction of any water power project—existing dam;
(7) Exemptions under section 405 of the Public Utility Regulatory Policies Act of 1978, as amended, and §§4.30(b)(27) and 4.101–4.106 of this chapter for small hydroelectric power projects of 5 MW or less;
(8) Licenses for additional project works at licensed projects under Part I of the Federal Power Act whether or not these are styled license amendments or original licenses;
(9) Licenses under Part I of the Federal Power Act and part 4 of this chapter for transmission lines only;
(10) Applications for new licenses under section 15 of the Federal Power Act;
(11) Approval of electric interconnections and wheeling under sections 202(b), 210, 211, and 212 of the Federal Power Act, unless excluded under §380.4(a)(17); and
(12) Regulations or proposals for legislation not excluded under §380.4(a)(2).
(13) Surrender of water power licenses and exemptions where project works exist or ground disturbing activity has occurred and amendments to water power licenses and exemptions that require ground disturbing activity or changes to project works or operations.
[Order 486, 52 FR 47910, Dec. 17, 1987; Order 486, 53 FR 4817, Feb. 17, 1988, as amended by 53 FR 8177, Mar. 14, 1988; Order 486-B, 53 FR 26437, July 13, 1988]
§ 380.6 Actions that require an environmental impact statement.
(a) Except as provided in paragraph (b) of this section, an environmental impact statement will normally be prepared first for the following projects:
(1) Authorization under sections 3 or 7 of the Natural Gas Act and DOE Delegation Order No. 0204–112 for the siting, construction, and operation of jurisdictional liquefied natural gas import/export facilities used wholly or in part to liquefy, store, or regasify liquefied natural gas transported by water;
(2) Certificate applications under section 7 of the Natural Gas Act to develop an underground natural gas storage facility except where depleted oil or natural gas producing fields are used;
(3) Major pipeline construction projects under section 7 of the Natural Gas Act using right-of-way in which there is no existing natural gas pipeline; and
(4) Licenses under Part I of the Federal Power Act and Part 4 of this chapter for construction of any unconstructed water power project.
(b) If the Commission believes that a proposed action identified in paragraph (a) of this section may not be a major Federal action significantly affecting the quality of the human environment, an environmental assessment, rather than an environmental impact statement, will be prepared first. Depending on the outcome of the environmental assessment, an environmental impact statement may or may not be prepared.
(c) An environmental impact statement will not be required if an environmental assessment indicates that a proposal has adverse environmental affects and the proposal is not approved.
[Order 486, 52 FR 47910, Dec. 17, 1987, as amended at 53 FR 8177, Mar. 14, 1988; Order 486-B, 53 FR 26437, July 13, 1988]
§ 380.7 Format of an environmental impact statement.
In addition to the requirements for an environmental impact statement prescribed in 40 CFR 1502.10 of the regulations of the Council, an environmental impact statement prepared by the Commission will include a section on the literature cited in the environmental impact statement and a staff conclusion section. The staff conclusion section will include summaries of:
(a) The significant environmental impacts of the proposed action;
(b) Any alternative to the proposed action that would have a less severe environmental impact or impacts and the action preferred by the staff;
(c) Any mitigation measures proposed by the applicant, as well as additional mitigation measures that might be more effective;
(d) Any significant environmental impacts of the proposed action that cannot be mitigated; and
(e) References to any pending, completed, or recommended studies that might provide baseline data or additional data on the proposed action.
§ 380.8 Preparation of environmental documents.
The preparation of environmental documents, as defined in §1508.10 of the regulations of the Council, on hydroelectric projects, is the responsibility of the Commission's Office of Hydropower Licensing, 888 First Street NE., Washington, DC 20426, (202) 219–2700. The preparation of environmental documents on natural gas projects is the responsibility of the Commission's Office of Pipeline Regulation, (202) 208–0700, 888 First Street NE., Washington, DC 20426. Persons interested in status reports or information on environmental impact statements or other elements of the NEPA process, including the studies or other information the Commission may require on these projects, can contact these sections.
[Order 486, 52 FR 47910, Dec. 17, 1987, as amended by Order 603–A, 64 FR 54537, Oct. 7, 1999]
§ 380.9 Public availability of NEPA documents and public notice of NEPA related hearings and public meetings.
(a)(1) The Commission will comply with the requirements of 40 CFR 1506.6 of the regulations of the Council for public involvement in NEPA.
(2) If an action has effects of primarily local concern, the Commission may give additional notice in a Commission order.
(b) The Commission will make environmental impact statements, environmental assessments, the comments received, and any underlaying documents available to the public pursuant to the provisions of the Freedom of Information Act (5 U.S.C. 552 (1982)). The exclusion in the Freedom of Information Act for interagency memoranda is not applicable where such memoranda transmit comments of Federal agencies on the environmental impact of the proposed action. Such materials will be made available to the public at the Commission's Public Reference Room at 888 First Street NE., Room 2A, Washington, DC 20426 at a fee and in the manner described in Part 388 of this chapter. A copy of an environmental impact statement or environmental assessment for hydroelectric projects may also be made available for inspection at the Commission's regional office for the region where the proposed action is located.
[Order 486, 52 FR 47910, Dec. 17, 1987, as amended by Order 603–A, 64 FR 54537, Oct. 7, 1999]
§ 380.10 Participation in Commission proceedings.
(a) Intervention proceedings involving a party or parties—1) Motion to intervene. (i) In addition to submitting comments on the NEPA process and NEPA related documents, any person may file a motion to intervene in a Commission proceeding dealing with environmental issues under the terms of §385.214 of this chapter. Any person who files a motion to intervene on the basis of a draft environmental impact statement will be deemed to have filed a timely motion, in accordance with §385.214, as long as the motion is filed within the comment period for the draft environmental impact statement.
(ii) Any person that is granted intervention after petitioning becomes a party to the proceeding and accepts the record as developed by the parties as of the time that intervention is granted.
(2)(i) Issues not set for trial-type hearing. An intervenor who takes a position on any environmental issue that has not yet been set for hearing must file a timely motion with the Secretary containing an analysis of its position on such issue and specifying any differences with the position of Commission staff or an applicant upon which the intervenor wishes to be heard at a hearing.
(ii) Issues set for trial-type hearing. (A) Any intervenor that takes a position on an environmental issue set for hearing may offer evidence for the record in support of such position and otherwise participate in accordance with the Commission's Rules of Practice and Procedure. Any intervenor must specify any differences from the staff's and the applicant's positions.
(B) To be considered, any facts or opinions on an environmental issue set for hearing must be admitted into evidence and made part of the record of the proceeding.
(b) Rulemaking proceedings. Any person may file comments on any environmental issue in a rulemaking proceeding.
§ 380.11 Environmental decisionmaking.
(a) Decision points. For the actions which require an environmental assessment or environmental impact statement, environmental considerations will be addressed at appropriate major decision points.
(1) In proceedings involving a party or parties and not set for trial-type hearing, major decision points are the approval or denial of proposals by the Commission or its designees.
(2) In matters set for trial-type hearing, the major decision points are the initial decision of an administrative law judge or the decision of the Commission.
(3) In a rulemaking proceeding, the major decision points are the Notice of Proposed Rulemaking and the Final Rule.
(b) Environmental documents as part of the record. The Commission will include environmental assessments, findings of no significant impact, or environmental impact statements, and any supplements in the record of the proceeding.
(c) Application denials. Notwithstanding any provision in this part, the Commission may dismiss or deny an application without performing an environmental impact statement or without undertaking environmental analysis.
§ 380.12 Environmental reports for Natural Gas Act applications.
(a) Introduction. (1) The applicant must submit an environmental report with any application that proposes the construction, operation, or abandonment of any facility identified in §380.3(c)(2)(i). The environmental report shall consist of the thirteen resource reports and related material described in this section.
(2) The detail of each resource report must be commensurate with the complexity of the proposal and its potential for environmental impact. Each topic in each resource report shall be addressed or its omission justified, unless the resource report description indicates that the data is not required for that type of proposal. If material required for one resource report is provided in another resource report or in another exhibit, it may be incorporated by reference. If any resource report topic is required for a particular project but is not provided at the time the application is filed, the environmental report shall explain why it is missing and when the applicant anticipates it will be filed.
(3) The appendix to this part contains a checklist of the minimum filing requirements for an environmental report. Failure to provide at least the applicable checklist items will result in rejection of the application unless the Director of OPR determines that the applicant has provided an acceptable reason for the item's absence and an acceptable schedule for filing it. Failure to file within the accepted schedule will result in rejection of the application.
(b) General requirements. As appropriate, each resource report shall:
(1) Address conditions or resources that might be directly or indirectly affected by the project.
(2) Identify significant environmental effects expected to occur as a result of the project;
(3) Identify the effects of construction, operation (including maintenance and malfunctions), and termination of the project, as well as cumulative effects resulting from existing or reasonably foreseeable projects;
(4) Identify measures proposed to enhance the environment or to avoid, mitigate, or compensate for adverse effects of the project;
(5) Provide a list of publications, reports, and other literature or communications, including agency contacts, that were cited or relied upon to prepare each report. This list should include the name and title of the person contacted, their affiliations, and telephone number.
(6) Whenever this section refers to “mileposts” the applicant may substitute “survey centerline stationing” if so desired. However, whatever method is chosen should be used consistently throughout the resource reports.
(c) Resource Report 1—General project description. This report is required for all applications. It will describe facilities associated with the project, special construction and operation procedures, construction timetables, future plans for related construction, compliance with regulations and codes, and permits that must be obtained. Resource Report 1 must:
(1) Describe and provide location maps of all jurisdictional facilities, including all aboveground facilities associated with the project (such as: meter stations, pig launchers/receivers, valves), to be constructed, modified, abandoned, replaced, or removed, including related construction and operational support activities and areas such as maintenance bases, staging areas, communications towers, power lines, and new access roads (roads to be built or modified). As relevant, the report must describe the length and diameter of the pipeline, the types of aboveground facilities that would be installed, and associated land requirements. It must also identify other companies that must construct jurisdictional facilities related to the project, where the facilities would be located, and where they are in the Commission's approval process.
(2) Identify and describe all nonjurisdictional facilities, including auxiliary facilities, that will be built in association with the project, including facilities to be built by other companies.
(i) Provide the following information:
(A) A brief description of each facility, including as appropriate: Ownership, land requirements, gas consumption, megawatt size, construction status, and an update of the latest status of Federal, state, and local permits/approvals;
(B) The length and diameter of any interconnecting pipeline;
(C) Current 1:24,000/1:25,000 scale topographic maps showing the location of the facilities;
(D) Correspondence with the appropriate State Historic Preservation Officer (SHPO) or duly authorized Tribal Historic Preservation Officer (THPO) for tribal lands regarding whether properties eligible for listing on the National Register of Historic Places (NRHP) would be affected;
(E) Correspondence with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (and National Marine Fisheries Service, if appropriate) regarding potential impacts of the proposed facility on federally listed threatened and endangered species; and
(F) For facilities within a designated coastal zone management area, a consistency determination or evidence that the owner has requested a consistency determination from the state's coastal zone management program.
(ii) Address each of the following factors and indicate which ones, if any, appear to indicate the need for the Commission to do an environmental review of project-related nonjurisdictional facilities.
(A) Whether or not the regulated activity comprises “merely a link” in a corridor type project (e.g., a transportation or utility transmission project).
(B) Whether there are aspects of the nonjurisdictional facility in the immediate vicinity of the regulated activity which uniquely determine the location and configuration of the regulated activity.
(C) The extent to which the entire project will be within the Commission's jurisdiction.
(D) The extent of cumulative Federal control and responsibility.
(3) Provide the following maps and photos:
(i) Current, original United States Geological Survey (USGS) 7.5-minute series topographic maps or maps of equivalent detail, covering at least a 0.5-mile-wide corridor centered on the pipeline, with integer mileposts identified, showing the location of rights-of-way, new access roads, other linear construction areas, compressor stations, and pipe storage areas. Show nonlinear construction areas on maps at a scale of 1:3,600 or larger keyed graphically and by milepost to the right-of-way maps.
(ii) Original aerial images or photographs or photo-based alignment sheets based on these sources, not more than 1 year old (unless older ones accurately depict current land use and development) and with a scale of 1:6,000 or larger, showing the proposed pipeline route and location of major aboveground facilities, covering at least a 0.5 mile-wide corridor, and including mileposts. Older images/photographs/alignment sheets should be modified to show any residences not depicted in the original. Alternative formats (e.g., blue-line prints of acceptable resolution) need prior approval by the environmental staff of the Office of Pipeline Regulation.
(iii) In addition to the copy required under §157.6(a)(2) of this chapter, applicant should send two additional copies of topographic maps and aerial images/photographs directly to the environmental staff of the Office of Pipeline Regulation.
(4) When new or additional compression is proposed, include large scale (1:3,600 or greater) plot plans of each compressor station. The plot plan should reference a readily identifiable point(s) on the USGS maps required in paragraph (c)(3) of this section. The maps and plot plans must identify the location of the nearest noise-sensitive areas (schools, hospitals, or residences) within 1 mile of the compressor station, existing and proposed compressor and auxiliary buildings, access roads, and the limits of areas that would be permanently disturbed.
(5)(i) Identify facilities to be abandoned, and state how they would be abandoned, how the site would be restored, who would own the site or right-of-way after abandonment, and who would be responsible for any facilities abandoned in place.
(ii) When the right-of-way or the easement would be abandoned, identify whether landowners were given the opportunity to request that the facilities on their property, including foundations and below ground components, be removed. Identify any landowners whose preferences the company does not intend to honor, and the reasons therefore.
(6) Describe and identify by milepost, proposed construction and restoration methods to be used in areas of rugged topography, residential areas, active croplands, sites where the pipeline would be located parallel to and under roads, and sites where explosives are likely to be used.
(7) Unless provided in response to Resource Report 5, describe estimated workforce requirements, including the number of pipeline construction spreads, average workforce requirements for each construction spread and meter or compressor station, estimated duration of construction from initial clearing to final restoration, and number of personnel to be hired to operate the proposed project.
(8) Describe reasonably foreseeable plans for future expansion of facilities, including additional land requirements and the compatibility of those plans with the current proposal.
(9) Describe all authorizations required to complete the proposed action and the status of applications for such authorizations. Identify environmental mitigation requirements specified in any permit or proposed in any permit application to the extent not specified elsewhere in this section.
(10) Provide the names and mailing addresses of all affected landowners specified in §157.6(d) and certify that all affected landowners will be notified as required in §157.6(d).
(d) Resource Report 2—Water use and quality. This report is required for all applications, except those which involve only facilities within the areas of an existing compressor, meter, or regulator station that were disturbed by construction of the existing facilities, no wetlands or waterbodies are on the site and there would not be a significant increase in water use. The report must describe water quality and provide data sufficient to determine the expected impact of the project and the effectiveness of mitigative, enhancement, or protective measures. Resource Report 2 must:
(1) Identify and describe by milepost perennial waterbodies and municipal water supply or watershed areas, specially designated surface water protection areas and sensitive waterbodies, and wetlands that would be crossed. For each waterbody crossing, identify the approximate width, state water quality classifications, any known potential pollutants present in the water or sediments, and any potable water intake sources within 3 miles downstream.
(2) Compare proposed mitigation measures with the staff's current “Wetland and Waterbody Construction and Mitigation Procedures,” which are available from the Commission Internet home page or the Commission staff, describe what proposed alternative mitigation would provide equivalent or greater protection to the environment, and provide a description of site- specific construction techniques that would be used at each major waterbody crossing.
(3) Describe typical staging area requirements at waterbody and wetland crossings. Also, identify and describe waterbodies and wetlands where staging areas are likely to be more extensive.
(4) Include National Wetland Inventory (NWI) maps. If NWI maps are not available, provide the appropriate state wetland maps. Identify for each crossing, the milepost, the wetland classification specified by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, and the length of the crossing. Include two copies of the NWI maps (or the substitutes, if NWI maps are not available) clearly showing the proposed route and mileposts directed to the environmental staff. Describe by milepost, wetland crossings as determined by field delineations using the current Federal methodology.
(5) Identify aquifers within excavation depth in the project area, including the depth of the aquifer, current and projected use, water quality and average yield, and known or suspected contamination problems.
(6) Describe specific locations, the quantity required, and the method and rate of withdrawal and discharge of hydrostatic test water. Describe suspended or dissolved material likely to be present in the water as a result of contact with the pipeline, particularly if an existing pipeline is being retested. Describe chemical or physical treatment of the pipeline or hydrostatic test water. Discuss waste products generated and disposal methods.
(7) If underground storage of natural gas is proposed:
(i) Identify how water produced from the storage field will be disposed of, and
(ii) For salt caverns, identify the source locations, the quantity required, and the method and rate of withdrawal of water for creating salt cavern(s), as well as the means of disposal of brine resulting from cavern leaching.
(8) Discuss proposed mitigation measures to reduce the potential for adverse impacts to surface water, wetlands, or groundwater quality to the extent they are not described in response to paragraph (d)(2) of this section. Discuss the potential for blasting to affect water wells, springs, and wetlands, and measures to be taken to detect and remedy such effects.
(9) Identify the location of known public and private groundwater supply wells or springs within 150 feet of proposed construction areas. Identify locations of EPA or state-designated sole-source aquifers and wellhead protection areas crossed by the proposed pipeline facilities.
(e) Resource Report 3—Fish, wildlife, and vegetation. This report is required for all applications, except those involving only facilities within the improved area of an existing compressor, meter, or regulator station. It must describe aquatic life, wildlife, and vegetation in the vicinity of the proposed project; expected impacts on these resources including potential effects on biodiversity; and proposed mitigation, enhancement or protection measures. Resource Report 3 must:
(1) Describe commercial and recreational warmwater, coldwater, and saltwater fisheries in the affected area and associated significant habitats such as spawning or rearing areas and estuaries.
(2) Describe terrestrial habitats, including wetlands, typical wildlife habitats, and rare, unique, or otherwise significant habitats that might be affected by the proposed action. Describe typical species that have commercial, recreational, or aesthetic value.
(3) Describe and provide the affected acreage of vegetation cover types that would be affected, including unique ecosystems or communities such as remnant prairie or old-growth forest, or significant individual plants, such as old-growth specimen trees.
(4) Describe the impact of construction and operation on aquatic and terrestrial species and their habitats, including the possibility of a major alteration to ecosystems or biodiversity, and any potential impact on state-listed endangered or threatened species. Describe the impact of maintenance, clearing and treatment of the project area on fish, wildlife, and vegetation. Surveys may be required to determine specific areas of significant habitats or communities of species of special concern to state or local agencies.
(5) Identify all federally listed or proposed endangered or threatened species and critical habitat that potentially occur in the vicinity of the project. Discuss the results of the consultation requirements listed in §380.13(b) at least through §380.13(b)(5)(i) and include any written correspondence that resulted from the consultation. The initial application must include the results of any required surveys unless seasonal considerations make this impractical. If species surveys are impractical, there must be field surveys to determine the presence of suitable habitat unless the entire project area is suitable habitat.
(6) Identify all federally listed essential fish habitat (EFH) that potentially occurs in the vicinity of the project. Provide information on all EFH, as identified by the pertinent Federal fishery management plans, that may be adversely affected by the project and the results of abbreviated consultations with NMFS, and any resulting EFH assessments.
(7) Describe site-specific mitigation measures to minimize impacts on fisheries, wildlife, and vegetation.
(8) Include copies of correspondence not provided pursuant to paragraph (e)(5) of this section, containing recommendations from appropriate Federal and state fish and wildlife agencies to avoid or limit impact on wildlife, fisheries, and vegetation, and the applicant's response to the recommendations.
(f) Resource Report 4—Cultural resources. This report is required for all applications. In order to prepare this report, the applicant must follow the principles in §380.14 of this part. Guidance on the content and the format for the documentation listed below, as well as professional qualifications of preparers, is detailed in “OPR's Guidelines for Reporting on Cultural Resources Investigations,” which is available from the Commission Internet home page or from the Commission staff.
(1) Resource Report 4 must contain:
(i) Documentation of the applicant's initial cultural resources consultation, including consultations with Native Americans and other interested persons (if appropriate);
(ii) Overview and Survey Reports, as appropriate;
(iii) Evaluation Report, as appropriate;
(iv) Treatment Plan, as appropriate; and
(v) Written comments from State Historic Preservation Officer(s) (SHPO), Tribal Historic Preservation Officers (THPO), as appropriate, and applicable land-managing agencies on the reports in paragraphs (f)(1)(i)–(iv) of this section.
(2) Initial filing requirements. The initial application must include the Documentation of initial cultural resource consultation, the Overview and Survey Reports, if required, and written comments from SHPOs, THPOs and land-managing agencies, if available. The initial cultural resources consultations should establish the need for surveys. If surveys are deemed necessary by the consultation with the SHPO/THPO, the survey report must be filed with the application.
(i) If the comments of the SHPOs, THPOs, or land-management agencies are not available at the time the application is filed, they may be filed separately, but they must be filed before a final certificate is issued.
(ii) If landowners deny access to private property and certain areas are not surveyed, the unsurveyed area must be identified by mileposts, and supplemental surveys or evaluations shall be conducted after access is granted. In such circumstances, reports, and treatment plans, if necessary, for those inaccessible lands may be filed after a certificate is issued.
(3) The Evaluation Report and Treatment Plan, if required, for the entire project must be filed before a final certificate is issued.
(i) The Evaluation Report may be combined in a single synthetic report with the Overview and Survey Reports if the SHPOs, THPOs, and land-management agencies allow and if it is available at the time the application is filed.
(ii) In preparing the Treatment Plan, the applicant must consult with the Commission staff, the SHPO, and any applicable THPO and land-management agencies.
(iii) Authorization to implement the Treatment Plan will occur only after the final certificate is issued.
(4) Applicant must request privileged treatment for all material filed with the Commission containing location, character, and ownership information about cultural resources in accordance with §388.112 of this chapter. The cover and relevant pages or portions of the report should be clearly labeled in bold lettering: “CONTAINS PRIVILEGED INFORMATION—DO NOT RELEASE.”
(5) Except as specified in a final Commission order, or by the Director of the Office of Pipeline Regulation, construction may not begin until all cultural resource reports and plans have been approved.
(g) Resource Report 5—Socioeconomics. This report is required only for applications involving significant aboveground facilities, including, among others, conditioning or liquefied natural gas (LNG) plants. It must identify and quantify the impacts of constructing and operating the proposed project on factors affecting towns and counties in the vicinity of the project. Resource Report 5 must:
(1) Describe the socioeconomic impact area.
(2) Evaluate the impact of any substantial immigration of people on governmental facilities and services and plans to reduce the impact on the local infrastructure.
(3) Describe on-site manpower requirements and payroll during construction and operation, including the number of construction personnel who currently reside within the impact area, would commute daily to the site from outside the impact area, or would relocate temporarily within the impact area.
(4) Determine whether existing housing within the impact area is sufficient to meet the needs of the additional population.
(5) Describe the number and types of residences and businesses that would be displaced by the project, procedures to be used to acquire these properties, and types and amounts of relocation assistance payments.
(6) Conduct a fiscal impact analysis evaluating incremental local government expenditures in relation to incremental local government revenues that would result from construction of the project. Incremental expenditures include, but are not limited to, school operating costs, road maintenance and repair, public safety, and public utility costs.
(h) Resource Report 6—Geological resources. This report is required for applications involving LNG facilities and all other applications, except those involving only facilities within the boundaries of existing aboveground facilities, such as a compressor, meter, or regulator station. It must describe geological resources and hazards in the project area that might be directly or indirectly affected by the proposed action or that could place the proposed facilities at risk, the potential effects of those hazards on the facility, and methods proposed to reduce the effects or risks. Resource Report 6 must:
(1) Describe, by milepost, mineral resources that are currently or potentially exploitable;
(2) Describe, by milepost, existing and potential geological hazards and areas of nonroutine geotechnical concern, such as high seismicity areas, active faults, and areas susceptible to soil liquefaction; planned, active, and abandoned mines; karst terrain; and areas of potential ground failure, such as subsidence, slumping, and landsliding. Discuss the hazards posed to the facility from each one.
(3) Describe how the project would be located or designed to avoid or minimize adverse effects to the resources or risk to itself, including geotechnical investigations and monitoring that would be conducted before, during, and after construction. Discuss also the potential for blasting to affect structures, and the measures to be taken to remedy such effects.
(4) Specify methods to be used to prevent project-induced contamination from surface mines or from mine tailings along the right-of-way and whether the project would hinder mine reclamation or expansion efforts. (continued)
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