U.S. DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIORBUREAU OF LAND MANAGEMENT
Ruby Pipeline Natural Gas Pipeline
On June 10, 2010, the U. S. Department of the Interior’s (DOI) Bureau of Land Management (BLM) signed a Record of Decision (ROD) and Right-of-Way Grant (ROW) for the Ruby Pipeline Project, a 678 mile interstate natural gas pipeline that crosses 368 miles of Federal land beginning near Opal, Wyoming, through northern Utah and northern Nevada, and terminating near Malin, Oregon. The BLM Nevada State Director, as the designated Federal official, signed the ROD and authorized the ROW for the construction, operation, maintenance, and termination of the pipeline and associated facilities across lands under jurisdiction of the BLM, the U.S. Forest Service, the Bureau of Reclamation, and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service in the four states.
In October 2012, the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals ruled in favor of a challenge brought by petitioners Center for Biological Diversity, Defenders of Wildlife et al., and Summit Lake Paiute Tribe that the FWS’s BO and its accompanying incidental take statement are arbitrary and capricious. Specifically, the BO’s “no jeopardy” and “no adverse modification” determinations rely on protective measures that are not enforceable under the Endangered Species Act, and the BO did not take into account the potential impacts of withdrawing 337.8 million gallons of groundwater along the pipeline.
The BLM has initiated a Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement (SEIS) for the Ruby Pipeline Project in response to a ruling from the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals. The ruling remands the BLM to undertake a revised cumulative effects analysis in the EIS as it related to the cumulative loss of sagebrush steppe habitat. The SEIS will include supplemental information about the original and present condition of the sagebrush steppe habitat and analyze the cumulative impacts of the Ruby Pipeline Project based on the supplemental information. The SEIS will serve as the foundation for the BLM’s decision on whether to reissue the BLM Right-of-Way (ROW) granted to Ruby Pipeline, LLC, for the project and, if so, to determine what terms and conditions it would require.
Frequently Asked Questions: Amendment to the Right-of-Way Grant and acceptance of the Long Term Monitoring Plan
Federal Register Notices
DECISION TO AMEND RIGHT-OF-WAY: CATHODES AND ROADS VARIANCE
After consideration of agency and tribal comments the BLM has decided to make changes to the ROW Grant and the Plan of Development for the project. This Decision includes incorporation of a route variation, developed to avoid sensitive resources. The BLM has also decided to accept an amendment to the Plan of Development to include a Winter Construction Plan, developed to reduce construction impacts to resources during winter weather conditions.
The ROD is for the selected alternative for the Ruby Pipeline Project, and the ROW is for the route certificated by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC), with the inclusion of the Newmont and Southern Langell Valley reroutes.
The referenced attachments are available on CD by request via e-mail at: firstname.lastname@example.org or by mail to: Mark Mackiewicz, BLM National Project Manager, c/o125 South 600 West, Price, UT 84501. Questions concerning the ROD may be directed to Mark Mackiewicz at the above address or by phone: 435-636-3616.
Interested parties may also view the documents at the following Federal agency offices:
Issued January 8, 2010