Proposed Sloan Hills Competitive Mineral Material Sales
Environmental Impact Statement
Mineral Materials Act
The Mineral Materials Act of July 31, 1947 as amended (30 U.S.C. 601 et seq.) grants the BLM authority for the disposal of mineral materials. These mineral materials include common varieties of sand, gravel, stone, pumice, pumicite, cinders, clay, and other mineral materials and petrified wood. These materials are made available to the public through sales and free use permits.
Service Rock Products Corporation
Service Rock Products Corporation (Service Rock) submitted an application (NVN-082069) to the BLM on May 30, 2006 to construct and operate an aggregate mine (Sloan Aggregate Mine) in Township 23 South, Range 61 East, Section 32, in Clark County, Nevada. Service Rock is proposing to extract up to 50 million tons of material from the proposed site. Service Rock has prepared and submitted a Draft Plan of Operation to the BLM for the Sloan Aggregate Mine.
CEMEX (formerly Rinker Materials West, LLC)
CEMEX (formally Rinker Materials, LLC) submitted an application (NVN-083153) to the BLM on February 20, 2007 to construct and operate an aggregate mine (Mojave Minerals Project) in Township 23 South, Range 61 East, Section 29, in Clark County, Nevada. CEMEX has also prepared and submitted a Draft Mining and Reclamation Plan to the BLM for the Mojave Minerals Project.
The sale request exceeds the volume limitations for noncompetitive sales found at 43 CFR 3602.31. Therefore the sale, if made, would have to be on a competitive basis (through oral bid or auction). The N½ of Section 32 and the S½ of Section 29 would be auctioned as two separate parcels. There is no guarantee that Service Rock and CEMEX would be the winning bidders of the two parcels.
National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA)
Before the BLM can sell the mineral material, the extent of impacts the proposed project would have on the natural and human environment must be analyzed. The National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) (42 USC 4321 et seq.) requires federal agencies to consider the environmental consequences of proposed actions in their decision-making process. Therefore, an Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) is being prepared to address CEMEX and Service Rock Products’ proposals to construct, operate and maintain mineral material mines in Sloan Hills.
The process began with a Notice of Intent published in the Federal Register in June 2007. A scoping period was held from June 11, 2007 through January 4, 2008 to provide the public an opportunity to learn and provide comments about the project. At the time, it was estimated that the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) process would be complete in June 2009.
During public scoping meetings, the project was described as two projects that would eventually merge into one, approximately 100 million tons of mineral material would be mined and approximately 640 acres would be mined over the next 20 to 30 years. The proposed project included a batch plant, processing plant, asphalt plant, stockpiles, facility office buildings, scale houses, employee parking, employee training facility, parts storage, quality control laboratory, equipment maintenance and fuel storage.
Since the scoping period, several key components have changed including the timeline and asphalt plant. At the request of the applicants, the asphalt plant has been removed from the proposed action. The NEPA process is now expected to be complete in February 2013. Should legislation pass withdrawing the area from mining, the DEIS would be null and void.
Environmental Impact Statement (EIS)
The BLM is acting as the Lead Agency in the preparation of an EIS that will evaluate the potential impacts associated with the construction, operation and maintenance of the Proposed Sloan Hills Competitive Mineral Material Sales project.
The Proposed Sloan Hills Competitive Mineral Material Sales Environmental Impact Statement is being prepared in compliance with NEPA and the Council on Environmental Quality (CEQ) Regulations for Implementing the Procedural Provisions of NEPA (40 CFR 1500-1508, 1993). The intent of NEPA is to protect, restore, or enhance the environment through a well-informed decision-making process.
The EIS will fulfill the needs and obligations set forth by NEPA, the Federal Lands Policy and Management Act (FLPMA) (43 USC 1701-1782, as amended), the Materials Act of July 31, 1947, as amended (30 U.S.C. 601 et seq.), and BLM management policies. The BLM will work collaboratively with all interested public and will identify issues and concerns for the EIS process.
EIS Roles and Responsibilities
Bureau of Land Management (BLM)
- Lead Federal Agency responsible for preparing the Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) and Record of Decision (ROD) for the Project
- Responsible for conducting public outreach, coordination with other agencies and environmental analysis.
- Ensures compliance with environmental laws and regulations
- Prepare EIS documents
- Supervise the EIS Contractor
CEMEX and Service Rock Products
- Applicants of the Proposed Action
- Provide data and information to assist BLM in carrying out their responsibilities
EIS Contractor – Atkins
- Provide specialized expertise and staff to assist the BLM in carrying out their responsibilities
This EIS will be developed in coordination with other Federal agencies that have jurisdiction by law or special expertise, as well as relevant state and local agencies.