Klamath Falls Record of Decision and Resource Management Plan

Klamath Falls Record of Decision

Klamath Falls District Resource Management Plan Table of Contents:

- Tables

- Maps

- Appendices

Energy and Minerals


Objectives

Maintain exploration and development opportunities for leasable and locatable energy and mineral resources.

Provide opportunities for extraction of salable minerals by other government entities, private industry, individuals, and nonprofit organizations.

Continue to make available mineral resources on the reserved federal mineral estate.

Land Use Allocations

See Table 9 for energy and mineral allocations. The acreages given in these tables and the discussion below are approximate. Overlapping restrictions from different land use allocations have been taken into consideration, and where this occurs, the most restrictive constraint was used.

Locatable Minerals. Approximately 191,600 acres of the 235,900 acres of federally-owned locatable minerals will be open to mining claim location and operation subject to standard requirements. Another 37,900 acres will be subject to additional restrictions. About 5,800 acres will continue to be withdrawn from mineral entry, with an additional 1,500 acres withdrawn from nonmetalliferous mineral entry. The Old Baldy Research Natural Area will be recommended for withdrawal (600 acres; See Table 10).

Leasable Minerals. Approximately 197,600 acres of the 238,700 acres of federally-owned oil and gas and 237,300 acres of federally-owned geothermal resources will be available for leasing subject to restrictions. No surface occupancy stipulations will be imposed on another 40,800 acres of oil and gas and geothermal resources. Leasing will not be allowed within the 300 acre Mountain Lakes Wilderness Study Area (see Table 11).

Salable Minerals. Approximately 222,500 acres of the 237,300 acres of federally-owned salable minerals will be open to mineral material disposal subject to restrictions. About 14,800 acres will be unavailable for mineral material disposal in order to protect important resource values and special investments (see Table 12).

Management Actions/Direction

See Tables 10, 11, and 12 for restrictions on energy and mineral activities and Appendix G for leasing notices and stipulations, and operating standards pertinent to locatable and salable minerals.

All Land Use Allocations

Leasable Minerals

Use special stipulations for oil, gas and geothermal leases to protect fragile areas or critical resource values (see Appendix G for a list of mineral restrictions by resource value). Special stipulations may include seasonal restrictions to protect resources such as critical wildlife habitat, prevent excessive erosion, etc.; controlled surface use stipulations to protect valuable resources in small areas; and no surface occupancy stipulations to protect valuable resources scattered over a large area while still providing an opportunity for exploration and development. Special stipulations may be waived by authorized BLM officials if the objective of a stipulation could be met in another way.

Locatable Minerals

Use general requirements in 43 Code of Federal Regulations 3809 and site-specific guidelines to avoid unnecessary or undue degradation of resources on mining claims.

Require reclamation at the earliest feasible time for all surface-disturbing operations, whether conducted under a notice or approved plan of operations.

Salable Minerals

Address quarry development, management, and reclamation needs through implementation planning.

Emphasize long-term regional quarry use.

Develop new quarry sites in locations consistent with overall management objectives and guidelines of the resource management plan.

Continue to use rock from existing quarries for construction and maintenance of timber sale access roads and other purposes.

Riparian Reserves

NOTE: The following management actions/direction differ from the standards and guidelines in the Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement Record of Decision since the standards and guidelines are not all implementable under current laws and regulations. The stronger standards and guidelines in the Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement Record of Decision (Appendix A) will be adopted at such time as changes in current laws and/or regulations authorize their implementation.

For any proposed locatable mining operation in Riparian Reserves, other than notice level or casual use, require the following actions by the operator consistent with 43 Code of Federal Regulations 3809:

  • Prepare a Plan of Operations, including a reclamation plan and reclamation bond for all mining operations in Riparian Reserves. Such plans and bonds will address the costs of removing facilities, equipment, and materials; recontouring of disturbed areas to an approved topography; isolating and neutralizing or removing toxic or potentially toxic materials; salvaging and replacing topsoil; and revegetating to meet Aquatic Conservation Strategy objectives.
  • Locate structures, support facilities, and roads outside Riparian Reserves. If no alternative to siting facilities in Riparian Reserves exists, locate in a way compatible with Aquatic Conservation Strategy objectives. Road construction will be kept to the minimum necessary for the approved mineral activity. Roads will be constructed and maintained to meet road management standards and to minimize damage to resources in Riparian Reserves. When a road is no longer required for mineral or land management activities, it will be reclaimed. In any case, access roads will be constructed consistent with 43 Code of Federal Regulations 3809 and acceptable road construction standards and will minimize damage to resources in Riparian Reserves.
  • Avoid locating solid and sanitary waste facilities in Riparian Reserves. If no alternative to locating mine waste (waste rock, spent ore, tailings) facilities in Riparian Reserves exists, releases can be prevented, and stability can be ensured, then:
  • Analyze the waste material using the best conventional sampling methods and analytic techniques to determine it's chemical and physical stability characteristics.
  • Locate and design the waste facilities using best conventional techniques to ensure mass stability and prevent the release of acid or toxic materials. If the best conventional technology is not sufficient to prevent such releases and ensure stability over the long term, prohibit such facilities in Riparian Reserves.
  • Reclaim waste facilities after operations to ensure chemical and physical stability and to meet Aquatic Conservation Strategy objectives.
  • Monitor waste and waste facilities after operations to ensure chemical and physical stability and to meet Aquatic Conservation Strategy objectives.
  • Require reclamation bonds adequate to ensure chemical and physical stability and to meet Aquatic Conservation Strategy objectives.
  • Where an existing operator is in noncompliance at the notice level (that is, causing unnecessary or undue degradation), require actions similar to those stated above to meet the intent of 43 Code of Federal Regulations 3809.

For future leasable mineral activity in Riparian Reserves, prohibit surface occupancy for oil, gas, and geothermal exploration an development activities unless it can be demonstrated that impacts will be acceptable or can be mitigated so that the objectives of the Aquatic Conservation Strategy can be met. Where possible, adjust the stipulations in existing leases to eliminate impacts that retard or prevent the attainment of Aquatic Conservation Strategy objectives, consistent with existing lease terms and stipulations.

Allow development of salable minerals, such as sand and gravel, within Riparian Reserves only if Aquatic Conservation Strategy objectives can be met.

Develop inspection and monitoring requirements and include such requirements in exploration and mining plans and in leases or permits consistent with existing laws and regulations. Evaluate the results of inspection and monitoring to determine if modification of plans, leases and permits is needed to eliminate impacts that retard or prevent attainment of Aquatic Conservation Strategy objectives.

Late-Successional/District Designated Reserves

Assess the impacts of ongoing and proposed mining activities in Late-Successional/District Designated Reserves.

Include stipulations in mineral leases and, when legally possible, require operational constraints for locatable mineral activities to minimize detrimental effects on late-successional habitat.