Barr completed an environmental assessment on 120 acres of land for Bronco Utah Operations’ Emery Mine expansion in Emery County, Utah. The Bureau of Land Management has authority to issue rights-of-way and initiate NEPA actions under the Federal Land Policy and Management Act of 1976. The first phase of the expansion involves obtaining federal NEPA approvals as well as a state mining permit from the Utah Division of Oil, Gas, and Mining for a right-of-way through a BLM coal body to access state and private coal reserves.
Barr worked closely with the BLM field and state offices to coordinate initial public involvement and scoping for the environmental assessment (EA). Ultimately, several resources were identified and assessed, including air quality, cultural resources, endangered species, fish habitat, soils, vegetation, geology, water quality, wildlife, and rangeland and grazing. We organized and facilitated the BLM’s interdisciplinary review and completed the draft EA for publication in 2018.
In the project’s second phase, Barr led the team conducting the EA for the 3,114-acre “lease by application” BLM surface land and coal to extend the mine’s life by 20 years. Our team completed all baseline studies and compiled a draft EA that is now under its second review by the BLM. We are currently conducting meetings with agency staff to resolve interdisciplinary-team checklist issues and move the EA forward.
This project has involved working with the Utah State Historic Preservation Office (SHPO, on historic and cultural findings) concurrently with the Utah divisions of:
• Oil, Gas and Mining (DOGM, to prepare the mining permit application)
• Air Quality (DAQ, to achieve air compliance for the expansion)
• Water Quality (DWQ, on NPDES, SWPPP, and groundwater compliance)
• Water Rights (DWR, on water-rights holdings)
Barr provides numerous other forms of support on Bronco’s current operations. In addition, we prepare and submit operational reports to the DOGM, testing and emission summaries to the DAQ, and water reports to the DWQ.