Lake Powell Pipeline Environmental Impact Statement
Intro and Project Overview
In accordance with the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969, the Bureau of Reclamation will prepare an Environmental Impact Statement for the Lake Powell Pipeline Project proposed by the Utah Board of Water Resources. The LPP is a 140-mile, 69-inch-diameter water delivery pipeline that begins at Lake Powell near Glen Canyon Dam in Page, Arizona, and ends at Sand Hollow Reservoir near St. George, Utah. UBWR proposes building LPP in order to bring a second source of water to Washington and Kane Counties in Utah to meet future water demands, diversify the regional water supply portfolio, and enhance the reliability of the water supply.
UBWR previously proposed a pipeline project with an intake at Lake Powell that included a hydroelectric peaking station at Hurricane Cliffs, Utah. The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission was the lead Federal agency for that project because it would have required a hydroelectric license issued by the FERC. The UBWR withdrew its application to the FERC on September 25, 2019, and the project was terminated effective October 10, 2019. (https://elibrary.ferc.gov/idmws/file_list.asp?accession_num=20191016-3069 ) Reclamation has been designated the lead Federal agency by the Department of the Interior for the LPP National Environmental Policy Act process. Based on the changes to project design and the lead federal agency, Reclamation is initiating a new public scoping process, which will require interested parties to submit new comments on the current proposal. Reclamation is also reinitiating government-to-government consultation with Indian tribes under section 106 of the National Historic Preservation Act and in accordance with Executive Order 13175.
Scoping is the first step in the NEPA process and can include various means of information-gathering activities. It is to be
Public participation is an integral part of scoping because it gives the public an opportunity to help Reclamation identify issues of special concern and alternatives to the proposed action that may be included in the Environmental Impact Statement.an early and open process for determining the scope of issues to be addressed and for identifying the significant issues related to a proposed action.(40 CFR 1501.7 )
Public scoping period for Reclamation’s Notice of Intent to prepare an EIS for the pipeline project was announced in the Federal Register on December 6, 2019, and in a press release from Reclamation. The purpose of soliciting input is to identify relevant issues, alternatives, mitigation measures, and analytical tools so that they can be incorporated into the EIS. Comments may be submitted by 11:59 p.m. MST on January 10, 2020.
Getting input from as many affected and interested parties as possible is an important part of preparing an EIS. These usually include:
- Citizens who live, work, or play in the area where the proposed project may occur.
- Public interest groups and Native communities that have concerns about possible impacts to environmental, social, or economic resources.
- Federal, State, and local government agencies that have responsibilities for managing public resources or services.
- Scientists and other technical experts with knowledge of the area's natural resources and the possible impacts of the project development.
An EIS analyzes the environmental concerns that were identified for each alternative. The objective of the analysis is to determine the nature, severity, and duration of impacts that might occur and to compare the impacts of the alternatives. Numerous technical aids are used in making the assessment, including 23 ecological and socioeconomic studies that were completed when Federal Energy Regulatory Commission was the lead agency. These studies will be updated and incorporated as appropriate for Reclamation’s EIS.
Draft EIS and Public Review
The impact analysis is first documented in a draft EIS. The draft EIS is made available to the public for 45 days for review and comment. The availability of the draft EIS is announced in a Federal Register notice and in press releases. Copies of the document are made available to the public on our web page. Requests for hard copies can also be submitted by email or phone using the “Contact Us” information. In order to make sure Reclamation can adequately respond to issues or concerns raised by the public, we ask that all comments be written and submitted via the methods described in the Notice of Intent or in the “Contact Us” section of this web page.
The principal objective when developing the final EIS is to address public comments on the draft EIS. The final EIS includes a summary of comments and Reclamation’s responses.
After the comments on the draft EIS are reviewed, Reclamation will revise the document to correct technical errors and add any relevant new information that became available since the draft EIS was published. Once again, the availability of the final EIS is announced in a Federal Register Notice and press releases.
- News Release – Reclamation holds Lake Powell Pipeline public scoping meetings
- News Release – Reclamation seeks public comment on the proposed Lake Powell Pipeline Project
- Notice of Intent – To Prepare a Draft Environmental Impact Statement and Public Scoping Period for the Lake Powell Pipeline Project
For further information contact:
Mr. Rick Baxter, Program Manager
Bureau of Reclamation, Provo Area Office
302 East Lakeview Parkway
Provo, UT 84606
Persons who use a telecommunications device for the deaf may call the Federal Relay Service (FedRelay) at 1-800-877-8339 TTY/ASCII to contact the above individual during normal business hours or to leave a message or question after hours. You will receive a reply during normal business hours.