CEDAR CITY – The Bureau of Land Management Cedar City Field Office has announced that the Final Environmental Impact Statement for the proposed Sigurd to Red Butte 345-kilovolt (kV) Transmission Line Project is now available for public review. When completed, the project would provide about 600 megawatts of electrical capacity to respond to anticipated load growth in southwestern Utah, and would allow for access to potential renewable energy resources. Through construction, the project is also expected to create up to 255 jobs.
PacifiCorp, doing business as Rocky Mountain Power, proposes to construct, operate, and maintain a single-circuit, alternating-current, 345-kV overhead transmission line. The transmission line would be located between the existing Sigurd Substation near Richfield in Sevier County and the existing Red Butte Substation near the community of Central in Washington County; a distance of approximately 170 miles, depending on the route selected. The requested right-of-way width on Federal lands for construction and operation of the project is 150 feet. The project also includes installation of new substation equipment at terminus points to interconnect the project with the existing Sigurd and Red Butte substations.
“This proposed project will strengthen Utah’s energy corridors and provide pathways for future electrical transmission lines that will help relieve congestion, improve reliability and enhance the national electric grid,” said BLM-Utah Director Juan Palma. “The BLM is working with federal, state, tribal and local governments and communities to ensure that this project receives thorough environmental and public review.”
Under Federal law, the BLM is responsible for responding to applications for right-of-way on BLM-administered lands. Similarly, under Federal law, the United States Forest Service is responsible for responding to applications for special-use authorizations on lands they administer. In accordance with National Environmental Policy Act, the BLM has prepared an EIS for the applications for the project. A Draft EIS was published for public review in May 2011.
The Final EIS evaluates, analyzes, and discloses to the public the direct, indirect, and cumulative environmental impacts of implementing the proposed project. The Final EIS also includes the written and verbal comments received during the public review period on the Draft EIS and responses to those comments.
BLM is the designated lead Federal agency for preparation of the EIS as defined in 40 CFR 1501.5. Agencies with legal jurisdiction or special expertise were invited to participate as cooperating agencies in preparation of the EIS. The following entities have been participating as cooperating agencies: USFS (Dixie and Fishlake National Forests); United States Army Corps of Engineers; the state of Utah; Millard, Sevier, Beaver, Iron, and Washington Counties, Utah; and the cities of St. George and Enterprise, Utah.
The 30-day review period on the Final EIS begins on Oct. 5, 2012, and ends on Nov. 4, 2012. While not a formal comment period, the public and agencies can submit comments on the Final EIS. Comments received during the 30-day period following publication of the Notice of Availability will be considered prior to a decision on the Proposed Action. Comments may be submitted electronically at [email protected] and postal mail copies should be sent to:
Attention: Tamara Gertsch
c/o Bureau of Land Management
Cedar City Field Office
176 East D.L. Sargent Drive
Cedar City, UT 84720
Before including your address, phone number, email address, or any other personal identifying information in your comment, you should be aware that your entire comment–including your personal identifying information–may be made publicly available at any time. While you can request in your comment that your personal identifying information be withheld from public review, BLM cannot guarantee that they will be able to do so.