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

Rights-of-Way


Objectives

Continue to make BLM-administered lands available for needed rights-of-way where consistent with local comprehensive plans, Oregon statewide planning goals and rules, and the exclusion and avoidance areas identified in this Resource Management Plan.

Ensure that all rights-of-way for hydroelectric development are consistent with the Northwest Power Planning Council guidance, which recommends prohibiting future hydroelectric development on certain rivers and streams with significant fisheries and wildlife values.

Land Use Allocations

Where consistent with local comprehensive plans and Oregon's statewide planning goals and rules, BLM-administered lands will continue to be available for needed rights-of-way. Utility/transportation routes (for electric transmission, as distinguished from electricity distribution or facilities; pipelines 10 inches in diameter or larger; significant canals, ditches and conduits; railroads; communication lines for interstate use; federal and state highways; and major county roads) will be confined to existing and other previously designated corridors, which are shown on Map 12. Communication facilities will be allowed on existing communication sites, also shown on Map 12.

Corridor widths vary depending on the number of parallel facilities within the corridor, but are a minimum of 2,000 feet (1,000 feet on either side of existing center lines) unless restricted by exclusion areas described in the following paragraph. Applicants will be encouraged to locate new facilities (including communication sites) adjacent to existing facilities to the extent technically and economically feasible. New facilities will be limited to the minimum acreage necessary for operation and maintenance.

All research natural areas, visual resource management Class I areas (see the Visual Resources section), and the Mountain Lakes Wilderness Study Area will be considered right-of-way exclusion areas (where future rights-of-way will be granted only when mandated by law).

With the exception of buried lines in rights-of-way of existing roads, avoid locating rights-of-way in the areas listed in Table 14.

Future rights-of-way may be granted in avoidance areas when no feasible alternative route or designated right-of-way corridor is available.

Management Actions/Direction

Riparian Reserves

Issue rightsofway to avoid adverse effects that retard or prevent attainment of Aquatic Conservation Strategy objectives. Where legally possible, adjust existing rightsofway to eliminate adverse effects that retard or prevent the attainment of Aquatic Conservation Strategy objectives. If adjustments are not effective and where legally possible, eliminate the activity. Priority for modifying existing rightsofway will be based on the actual or potential impact and the ecological value of the riparian-wetland resources affected.

For proposed hydroelectric projects under the jurisdiction of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, provide timely, written comments regarding maintenance of instream flows and habitat conditions and maintenance/restoration of riparian resources and stream channel integrity. Request the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission to locate proposed support facilities outside of Riparian Reserves. For existing support facilities inside Riparian Reserves that are essential to proper management, provide recommendations to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission that ensure Aquatic Conservation Strategy objectives are met. Where these objectives cannot be met, provide recommendations to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission that such support facilities should be relocated. Existing support facilities that must be located in the Riparian Reserves should be located, operated, and maintained with an emphasis to eliminate adverse effects that retard or prevent attainment of Aquatic Conservation Strategy objectives.

The right-of-way application for the Salt Caves hydroelectric project is denied based on the Secretary of Interior's designation of the upper Klamath River as scenic. The outcome of litigation between the City of Klamath Falls and the Secretary of the Interior could change this decision.

For other hydroelectric and surface water development proposals in Tier 1 Key Watersheds, require instream flows and habitat conditions that maintain or restore riparian resources, favorable channel conditions, and fish passage. Coordinate this process with the appropriate state agencies. For other hydroelectric and surface water development proposals in all other watersheds, give priority emphasis to instream flows and habitat conditions that maintain or restore riparian resources, favorable channel conditions, and fish passage. Coordinate this process with the appropriate state agencies.

Late-Successional/District Designated Reserves

Retain and maintain existing developments, such as utility corridors and electronic sites, consistent with other management actions/direction for Late-Successional/District Designated Reserves.

Neither construct nor authorize new facilities that may adversely affect Late-Successional/District Designated Reserves.

Review on a case-by-case basis new development proposals. They may be approved when adverse effects can be minimized and mitigated.

Locate new developments to avoid degradation of habitat and adverse effects on identified late-successional species.

Remove hazard trees along utility rights-of-way and in other developed areas.

Other Land Use Allocations

Encourage location of major new rights-of-way projects in existing utility/transportation routes and other previously designated corridors.

Encourage applicants to consult the Western Regional Corridor Study in planning route locations.

Consider new locations for rights-of-way projects on a case-by-case basis. Applications may be approved where the applicant can demonstrate that use of an existing route or corridor will not be technically or economically feasible; and the proposed project will otherwise be consistent with this resource management plan and will minimize damage to the environment.

Allow expansion of communications facilities on existing communication sites.

Consider new communication sites on a case-by-case basis. Applications may be approved where the applicant can demonstrate that use of an existing, developed communication site will not be technically feasible; and the proposed facility will otherwise be consistent with this resource management plan and will minimize damage to the environment.

Alternative Energy Projects. Issuance of a right-of-way grant for alternative energy (pumped storage, wind, etc.) are acceptable so long as the proposal is consistent with other resource values and management objectives. Consistency will be determined by appropriate site-specific National Environmental Policy Act analysis.