Dear BRC Action Alert Subscriber,
The Humboldt-Toiyabe National Forest has released the Revised Draft Environmental Impact Statement (Revised DEIS) for the Greater Sage-grouse Bi-State Distinct Population Segment (Bi-state sage-grouse) Forest Plan Amendment. This Bi-state sage-grouse population occurs in portions of Lyon, Mineral, Esmeralda and Douglas counties in Nevada, and in portions of Alpine, Inyo, and Mono counties in California.
The Humboldt-Toiyabe National Forest proposes to amend the Toiyabe National Forest Land and Resource Management Plan and the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) proposes to amend the BLM Carson City District and Tonopah Field Office Resource Management Plans to conserve, enhance and/or restore habitats to provide for the long-term viability of the Bi-state sage-grouse.
The management plan amendments will specifically enhance management direction for the Bi-state sage-grouse habitat. The amendments would add additional goals, objectives, standards, and guidelines to the existing management plans to address the key threats identified by the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service (USFWS) in its October 28, 2013, proposal to list the Bi-state sage-grouse as threatened under the Endangered Species Act.
The Revised DEIS was developed to address public comments received on the August 2013 DEIS and to incorporate emerging science that will help guide restoration and habitat improvement projects. The Forest Service and BLM decided to prepare a Revised DEIS in April of 2014, after the USFWS announced the extension of the comment period for the proposed rule and has now delayed the listing decision to April of 2015.
The Revised DEIS displays the effects of the Modified Proposed Action (Alternative B – which is the preferred alternative), an alternative to the Proposed Action, the No Action alternative and Alternative C (the environmental alternative). The Revised DEIS will be available for public review and comment for 90 days following publication of the Notice of Availability in the Federal Register.
Of special note to the OHV community, Alternative B adopts a number of the managed OHV recommendations submitted by the BlueRibbon Coalition, with support from various NV and other OHV organizations. Those OHV standards and guidelines can be found on page 20 of the Revised DEIS.
OHV interests should review those proposed OHV management prescriptions with a special focus on any site-specific impacts they might have on existing casual and permitted OHV recreational activities.
The agencies are encouraging interested parties to review the Revised DEIS and provide input. After the 90-day comment period, the agencies will consider the comments provided, update the analysis and issue a Final EIS. Based on the analysis in the Final EIS, the BLM and the Forest Service will issue separate Records of Decisions amending their respective management plans.
The Revised DEIS is available at http://www.fs.fed.us/nepa/fs-usda-pop.php/?project=40683, or a hard copy may be requested from the Humboldt-Toiyabe National Forest by contacting Susan Joyce at 775-355-5313.
Thanks in advance and, as always, if you have any questions or concerns, please contact BRC.Don Amador Western Representative BlueRibbon Coalition 925-625-6287
The BlueRibbon Coalition (BRC) is a national non-profit organization that champions responsible recreation and encourages a strong conservation ethic and individual stewardship, while providing leadership in efforts to keep outdoor recreation alive and well — all sports; all trails. With members in all 50 states, BRC is focused on building enthusiast involvement with organizational efforts through membership, outreach, education
and collaboration among recreationists.
1-800-BLUERIB – www.BlueRibbonCoalition.Org