[Federal Register Volume 73, Number 178 (Friday, September 12, 2008)]
[Page 53052]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: E8-21275]



[Docket No. 040-08502]

Notice of Availability of Environmental Assessment and Finding of 
No Significant Impact for License Amendment Request To Revert to 
Operating Status From Restoration and Decommissioning Status, Cogema 
Mining Inc., Christensen and Irigaray Ranch Facilities, Johnson and 
Campbell Counties, WY

AGENCY: Nuclear Regulatory Commission.

ACTION: Notice of availability.


Uranium Recovery Licensing Branch, Division of Waste Management and 
Environmental Protection, Office of Federal and State Materials and 
Environmental Management Programs, U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, 
Washington, DC 20555. Telephone: 301-415-7777; fax number: 301-415-
5369; e-mail: [email protected].


I. Introduction

    The Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) is issuing a license 
amendment to source Materials License No. SUA-1341 issued to Cogema 
Mining, Inc. (COGEMA) (the licensee), to authorize a return to uranium 
production operations and the recovery of uranium by in situ leach 
(ISL) extraction techniques as previously licensed by the NRC at its 
Christensen and Irigaray Ranch Facilities, Johnson and Campbell 
Counties, Wyoming. NRC has prepared an Environmental Assessment (EA) in 
support of this amendment in accordance with the requirements of 10 CFR 
Part 51. Based on the EA, the NRC has concluded that a Finding of No 
Significant Impact (FONSI) is appropriate. The amendment will be issued 
following the publication of this Notice.

II. EA Summary

    On April 3, 2007, COGEMA requested that NRC approve an amendment to 
authorize a return to uranium production operations and the recovery of 
uranium by ISL extraction techniques at the licensee's Christensen and 
Irigaray Ranch facilities in Johnson and Campbell Counties, Wyoming. 
Specifically, COGEMA's source materials license will be amended to 
allow for the resumption of uranium recovery operations by the 
injection of lixiviant with license conditions that are essentially the 
same as those contained in the last operational license, SUA-1341, 
Amendment 3. COGEMA's request for the proposed amendment was noticed in 
the Federal Register on March 17, 2008, with a notice of an opportunity 
to request a hearing. The Federal Register notice of an opportunity to 
request a hearing was also posted on NRC's public Web site under 
``Hearing Opportunities and License Applications.'' No hearing requests 
were received.
    The staff has prepared the EA in support of the proposed license 
amendment. The NRC staff found that the type of impacts would be 
similar to those that already exist and that have been evaluated in 
previous environmental reviews. The staff reviewed impacts to land use, 
transportation, geology and soils, ecology, air quality, noise, 
cultural and historical resources, visual and scenic resources, 
socioeconomic resources, public and occupational health, and waste 
management. All impacts were found to be low with the exception of some 
moderate short-term visual impacts to the Pumpkin Buttes which have 
been determined by the Bureau of Land Management to be a Native 
American traditional cultural property.

III. Finding of No Significant Impact

    On the basis of the EA, NRC has concluded that there are no 
significant environmental impacts from the proposed amendment, and that 
preparation of an environmental impact statement is not warranted.

IV. Further Information

    Documents related to this action, including the application for 
amendment and supporting documentation, are available electronically at 
the NRC's Electronic Reading Room at http://www.nrc.gov/reading-rm/adams.html. From this site, you can access the NRC's Agencywide 
Document Access and Management System (ADAMS), which provides text and 
image files of NRC's public documents. The ADAMS accession numbers for 
the documents related to this notice are: ML071020274, Letter from T. 
Hardgrove, COGEMA Mining, Re: Request for Amendment to License SUA-1341 
for Restart of Irigaray/Christensen Ranch Facilities; ML082110026, 
Environmental Assessment Regarding the License Amendment Request to 
Return to Operating Status from Decommissioning Status Cogema Mining, 
Inc. Irigaray and Christensen Ranch Projects Wyoming. If you do not 
have access to ADAMS or if there are problems in accessing the 
documents located in ADAMS, contact the NRC Public Document Room (PDR) 
Reference staff at 1-800-397-4209, 301-415-4737 or by e-mail to 
[email protected].
    These documents may also be viewed electronically on the public 
computers located at the NRC's Public Document Room (PDR), O 1 F21, One 
White Flint North, 11555 Rockville Pike, Rockville, Maryland 20852. The 
PDR reproduction contractor will copy documents for a fee.

    Dated at Rockville, Maryland, this 8th day of September 2008.

    For The Nuclear Regulatory Commission.
Keith I. McConnell,
Deputy Director, Decommissioning and Uranium Recovery, Licensing 
Directorate, Division of Waste Management, and Environmental 
Protection, Office of Federal and State Materials and Environmental 
Management Programs.
[FR Doc. E8-21275 Filed 9-11-08; 8:45 am]