Forest Service and Bureau of Land Management Announce 15-day extension of public comment period on Rainy River Withdrawal Environmental Assessment in northern Minnesotadalbert
Forest Service and Bureau of Land Management Announce 15-day extension of public comment period on Rainy River Withdrawal Environmental Assessment in northern Minnesota
Fri, 07/15/2022 – 15:05 EDT
The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Forest Service and Department of the Interior’s Bureau of Land Management (BLM) are extending the public comment period by 15 days on the Forest Service’s draft Environmental Assessment supporting the Forest Service’s request to withdraw lands in the Rainy River watershed from operation of the mineral and geothermal leasing laws for 20 years, subject to valid existing rights. This equates to a full 45-day comment period.
A notice of the public comment period extension will be published in the Federal Register (https://www.federalregister.gov/public-inspection/current) the week of July 18, 2022, and the official end of the comment period will be at midnight Dateline Standard Time on August 12, 2022 (8 a.m. EDT August 13, 2022) Public comments will help the Forest Service ensure that impacts and issues associated with the withdrawal are fully considered in the final environmental assessment. Comments are most useful and effective if they refer to a specific activity, example or provide a potential solution.
The draft environmental assessment is one component of the withdrawal application case file that the BLM will eventually prepare for the Secretary of the Interior, the ultimate decision maker on the Forest Service’s withdrawal application, in accord with the BLM’s regulations. The BLM will use the information, studies, analyses and reports that the Forest Service is preparing, including a mineral resource report, a social and economic impact report, a recreation and wilderness report, a cultural resources report, and other documentation, to make a final recommendation to the Secretary of the Interior on whether to approve the application.
Comments must be submitted, preferably electronically, to the Forest Service for consideration by midnight Dateline Standard Time on August 12, 2022 (8 a.m. EDT August 13, 2022). Comments can be submitted via the webform, by selecting the “Comment/Object to Project” link on the project page at http://go.usa.gov/xtaCw. Written comments will also be accepted; please send them to: 8901 Grand Avenue Place, Duluth, MN 55808, Re: Rainy River Withdrawal. All comments received (including names and addresses) will become part of the project record and will be available for public inspection.
The public can review the draft environmental assessment on the project website: http://go.usa.gov/xtaCw. For more information on the project, please visit the withdrawal project page https://www.fs.usda.gov/project/?project=60916.