Thursday, May 10, 2012
Corps completes environmental compliance for Dworshak Nutrient Supplementation Project Environmental Assessment
Environmental Assessment reviewed within well-established process
Ahsahka - The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers’ Walla Walla District has completed environmental compliance for the Dworshak Nutrient Supplementation Project, an ecosystem improvement project at Dworshak Reservoir. After review and consideration of recent public comments in accordance with the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA), the Corps found that the project would not have significant impacts on the environment.
The Corps’ environmental analysis was performed within a well-established environmental review process that includes public involvement. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) previously issued a National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) permit to the Corps on Sept. 6, 2011, effective on Oct. 15, 2011 after EPA environmental review and consideration of public comments. The NPDES permit allows application of liquid fertilizer to Dworshak Reservoir as an ecosystem treatment.
The Corps then performed an Environmental Assessment (EA) and developed a draft Finding of No Significant Impact (FONSI) for public comments. The Corps initially accepted public comments through Feb. 16 and further extended the public comment period until March 17 to accommodate wider public input. All public comments received were considered as part of the decision-making process. The Corps received comments from 22 individuals.
The Corps has openly communicated with the public about this project for several years at public meetings and, most recently, at an April 12 Open House in Orofino with Idaho Fish and Game (IDFG). The Corps partners with IDFG on this project. The Corps plans to resume addition of nutrients to the reservoir this year.
District Commander Lt. Col. David Caldwell signed the final FONSI on May 2 after careful deliberation. The Dworshak Nutrient Supplementation Project FONSI, EA, public comments and Corps responses to comments, and related information are available on the District website at http://www.nww.usace.army.mil/dwanutr/default.asp.
To learn more about the Corps of Engineers and its mission in the Walla Walla District, see the District website at www.nww.usace.army.mil