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East Branch Au Gres River Sea Lamprey Trap

Posted: 5/5/2016

Expiration date:


TO ALL INTERESTED AGENCIES, PUBLIC GROUPS, AND CITIZENS

The United States Army Corps of Engineers (USACE), Detroit District has prepared an Integrated Detailed Project Report and Environmental Assessment (IDPR/EA), East Branch Au Gres Sea Lamprey Traps, Iosco County, Michigan. This study has been prepared under the Great Lakes Fishery and Ecosystem Restoration (GLFER) program (Section 506 of the Water Resources Development Act of 2000, as amended). The IDPR/EA is available at the Detroit District webpage: http://www.lre.usace.army.mil/ under the category "Other Public Notices" in the lower left corner of the webpage. A paper copy of the IDPR/EA may be reviewed at Whittemore City Library, 483 S. Bullock Street, Whittemore, Ml 48770, during normal business hours (telephone (989)756-3186; inquire at the reference desk).

The proposed action is to construct a permanent sea lamprey trap in the East Branch Au Gres River, immediately downstream from an existing Michigan Department of Natural Resources (MDNR) barrier near National City, Michigan. The project purpose is to increase the efficiency of trapping spawning-phase sea lamprey (an invasive species to the Great Lakes) in the East Branch Au Gres River. Sea lamprey are a significant factor in the decline of many native fish species in the Great Lakes, most notably lake trout. Providing greater trapping efficiency to remove spawning phase adults from the East Branch Au Gres River will help reduce reproduction of sea lamprey, thereby providing benefit to the Great Lakes fisheries and ecosystems.

As part of the IDPR/EA and in accordance with the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969 (NEPA), the USACE has assessed the potential environmental impacts associated with implementing the proposed action. The environmental assessment (EA) concludes that: 1) there are no significant short-term, long-term, or cumulative adverse environmental effects associated with implementing the proposed action; 2) the project benefits outweigh minor, temporary impacts, primarily short-term noise and air emissions from construction activities; and 3) the proposed action does not constitute a major Federal action significantly affecting the quality of the human environment.

The IDPR/EA includes the USACE effects determination pursuant to Section 106 of the National Historic Preservation Act. The USACE has reached a preliminary determination of "no adverse effect" on historic properties. However, any person who has a historical or cultural interest that may be affected by the proposed action may submit comments regarding this effects determination. The comments must be submitted in writing within the comment period of this notice (as described below) and must clearly state what historical or cultural interest may be affected by this activity.

The IDPR/EA includes a Section 404(b)(1) evaluation of the discharge of fill material in waters of the United States pursuant to the Clean Water Act. Any person who has an interest that may be affected by the discharge may request a public hearing. To be considered, the request must be submitted in writing to the contact provided below within the comment period of this notice and must clearly set forth the interest that may be affected and the manner in which the interest may be affected by this activity.

The proposed action is outside the coastal zone designated by the State of Michigan and therefore would have no adverse effect and is consistent to the maximum extent practicable with the State of Michigan Coastal Zone Management program. The proposed action is in the floodplain of the East Branch Au Gres River, but complies with the Federal Executive Order on Floodplain Management (E.O. 11988) because it would not encourage floodplain development nor induce flooding, and there is no practicable alternative outside the floodplain for trapping sea lamprey.

You may provide any concerns or comments regarding this proposed action in writing within thirty (30) days of the date of this notice. Please direct your comments to:

Charles A. Uhlarik, Chief

Environmental Analysis Branch

U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Detroit District

477 Michigan Avenue

Detroit, Michigan 48226-2550

Following the comment period and a review of the comments received, the District Engineer (USACE, Detroit District) will make a final decision regarding the necessity of preparing an Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) for the proposed action. Based on the conclusions of the IDPR/EA, it appears that preparation of an EIS will not be required; therefore, a preliminary Finding of No Significant Impact has been included with the IDPR/EA.