[Federal Register Volume 76, Number 73 (Friday, April 15, 2011)]
[Proposed Rules]
[Pages 21272-21294]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2011-9119]


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DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE

Forest Service

36 CFR Part 294

RIN 0596-AC74


Special Areas; Roadless Area Conservation; Applicability to the 
National Forests in Colorado

AGENCY: Forest Service, USDA.

ACTION: Notice of proposed rulemaking.

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SUMMARY: The Forest Service, U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), is 
proposing to establish a State-specific rule to provide management 
direction for conserving and managing inventoried roadless areas on 
National Forest System (NFS) lands in Colorado. A proposed rule was 
published in the July 25, 2008, Federal Register. In response to public 
comment on the 2008 Proposed Rule and a revised petition submitted by 
the State of Colorado on April 6, 2010, the Forest Service is 
publishing a new proposed rule.
    The Agency is inviting public comment on this new proposed rule and 
accompanying revised draft environmental impact statement (RDEIS). The 
Agency is interested in public comments on the changes to exceptions 
and prohibitions on activities in roadless areas that have been 
developed in response to public comments on the 2008 Proposed Rule. The 
Agency is particularly interested in receiving public comments on the 
concept, management, and rationale for designation of specific areas 
within Colorado Roadless Areas identified as ``upper tier.'' In this 
proposed rule, these areas are provided a higher level of protection 
than the 2001 Roadless Rule,

DATES: Comments must be received in writing by July 14, 2011.

ADDRESSES: Comments may be sent via e-mail to 
COComments@fsroadless.org. Comments may also be submitted via the 
Internet at http://www.regulations.gov. Written comments concerning 
this notice should be addressed to: Colorado Roadless Rule/EIS, P.O. 
Box 1919, Sacramento, CA 95812.
    All comments, including names and addresses, are placed in the 
record and are available for public inspection and copying. The public 
may inspect comments received at http://roadless.fs.fed.us.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Colorado Roadless Rule Team Leader Ken 
Tu at (303) 275-5156. Individuals using telecommunication devices for 
the deaf (TDD) may call the Federal

[[Page 21273]]

Information Relay Service (FIRS) at 1-800-877-8339 between 8 a.m. and 8 
p.m. Eastern Standard Time, Monday through Friday.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

Background

    As a leader in natural resource conservation, the Forest Service 
provides direction for the management and use of the Nation's forests, 
rangeland, and aquatic ecosystems under its jurisdiction. Similarly, 
the State of Colorado is committed to sustained natural resource use 
and conservation of State and Federal land within its borders. 
Furthermore, the Forest Service is charged to collaborate cooperatively 
with States and other interested parties regarding the use and 
management of the National Forest System (NFS).
    Colorado's Roadless Areas are of great importance to the people of 
Colorado and the Nation. These magnificent landscapes provide a variety 
of resources and open space opportunities for all Americans. They 
provide the setting and backdrop for recreational experiences of all 
kinds, including non-motorized and/or motorized recreational trail use. 
They are sources of clean and safe public drinking water. They contain 
intact habitat for species dependent on large, undisturbed areas of 
land. The scenic quality of these naturally appearing landscapes is 
among the highest in the Nation. These areas serve as bulwarks against 
the spread of non-native invasive plant species and provide reference 
areas for study and research. The USDA, Forest Service, and State 
consider these areas an important component of the NFS and are 
committed to the conservation and protection of Colorado Roadless Areas 
(CRAs).
    The unique perspectives and knowledge provided by the State and the 
public was of great assistance throughout the development of this 
proposed rule. Many of the CRAs form the setting and backdrop for 
Colorado communities and have become part of their identity. These 
areas help provide a high quality of life for local residents. They are 
also the backdrop for world-class skiing, hunting and fishing, and 
backcountry experiences for non-residents. Local communities are 
sensitive to the economic consequences of Federal land management, 
whether for tourism or other purposes.
    The new proposed rule addresses both local and national interests 
in the management of Colorado Roadless Areas. Recommendations from the 
USDA Secretary's Roadless Area Conservation National Advisory Committee 
(RACNAC) and public comment on the 2008 Proposed Rule both provided a 
national perspective. The RACNAC was specifically designed as an 
advisory committee composed of national interests to provide a national 
perspective, and it no longer exists. The vast majority of respondents 
to the 2008 Proposed Rule expressed a desire for a rule that protects 
roadless area characteristics now and for future generations. However, 
some respondents suggested alternative, less restrictive roadless 
regulations. This proposed rule includes prohibitions on tree-cutting, 
sale, or removal; road construction/reconstruction; and linear 
construction zones, all with limited exceptions tailored to address 
specific issues. This proposed rule requires, in many cases, the 
Regional Forester to make specific determinations prior to authorizing 
exceptions.
    In this proposed rule, substantially altered acres have been 
removed from the roadless inventory and new acres with high level of 
roadless characteristics have been added. In the standard tier, 20,000 
acres are in the North Fork coal mining area, where there is an 
exception for temporary roads for underground coal activities such as 
methane drainage wells. Existing ski areas (8,300 acres) have been 
removed from the roadless inventory, although only 1,700 acres would be 
currently restricted by the 2001 Rule due to the fact that there are 
existing permits on the other 6,600 ski area acres.
    Linear construction zones are prohibited with some exceptions. 
There is no prohibition of linear construction zones in the 2001 Rule.
    In the proposed rule, there are exceptions for temporary roads for 
fuels treatment and for ecosystem maintenance and restoration, but 
these are restricted to locations within one half mile of communities. 
Road construction for these purposes is not allowed in the 2001 Rule. 
There is an exception for roads for authorized water conveyance 
structures operated according to a State water court decree in 
existence at the time of the promulgation of the final rule. There is 
no exception for roads for water conveyance structures in the 2001 
Rule.
    In the proposed rule, the tree cutting exceptions for fuel 
treatment and ecosystem maintenance and restoration are restricted 
spatially in this proposed rule to a maximum of one and a half miles 
from communities. The only condition in which tree cutting could occur 
outside the community protection zone (CPZ) requires a Regional 
Forester determination that there is a significant risk from wildfire 
to a municipal water supply system. The 2001 Rule exception for 
ecosystem maintenance and restoration allows tree cutting anywhere 
within roadless areas.
    In the proposed rule, an upper tier of protection has been 
designated with fewer exceptions than the 2001 Rule for road 
construction and reconstruction and tree cutting. Exceptions are not 
allowed for road reconstruction and realignment, and temporary roads 
for public health and safety. The 2001 Rule tree-cutting exceptions for 
maintenance and restoration of ecosystem characteristics, and for 
habitat improvement for endangered, threatened or sensitive species are 
not allowed in the upper tier of the proposed rule.

State of Colorado Petitions

    On July 14, 2005, the State of Colorado announced it would submit a 
petition requesting specific regulatory protections for the inventoried 
roadless areas within the State. The State's commitment to participate 
was evidenced by Colorado Senate Bill 05-243, the Roadless Areas Review 
Task Force legislation signed into Colorado law on June 8, 2005. The 
law identified membership and responsibilities of a 13-member 
bipartisan task force to make recommendations to the Governor regarding 
inventoried roadless areas in Colorado. The law also identified the 
Federal 2001 Roadless Area Conservation Rule (2001 Roadless Rule) as 
the starting point for the task force. The task force held nine public 
meetings throughout the State, reviewed and considered over 40,000 
public comments, and conducted a comprehensive review of Colorado's 4.4 
million acres of inventoried roadless areas included in the 2001 
Roadless Rule.
    Colorado's petition (2006 Petition) was submitted by then-Governor 
Owens on November 13, 2006, to the Secretary of Agriculture for 
consideration under section 553(e) of the Administrative Procedure Act 
and USDA regulations at 7 CFR 1.28. On April 11, 2007, Governor Ritter 
resubmitted the 2006 petition with additions (2007 Petition). After 
reviewing the recommendation from the RACNAC, the Secretary of 
Agriculture accepted the 2007 Petition on August 24, 2007, and directed 
the Forest Service to initiate rulemaking based on the petition. The 
State of Colorado was granted cooperating agency status for purposes of 
compliance with the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) pursuant 
to 40 CFR 1501.6 of the Council on Environmental Quality regulations in 
a memorandum of

[[Page 21274]]

understanding dated January 8, 2008. A notice of intent (NOI) to 
prepare an environmental impact statement (EIS) was published in the 
Federal Register on December 26, 2007 (72 FR 72982). The public comment 
period ended on February 25, 2008. The Forest Service received about 
88,000 responses.
    On July 25, 2008, the Forest Service published the 2008 Proposed 
Rule to establish State-specific management direction for conserving 
roadless areas on NFS land in Colorado in the Federal Register (73 FR 
43544). A notice of availability for the draft EIS was published in the 
Federal Register on August 1, 2008 (73 FR 44991). The availability of 
the regulatory risk assessment for the 2008 Proposed Rule was published 
in the Federal Register on September 18, 2008 (73 FR 54125). The 
comment period for all three documents closed on October 23, 2008.
    Information applying to the 2008 Proposed Rule was provided to the 
Ute Mountain Ute and Southern Ute Indian Tribes, located in Colorado, 
prior to the release of the NOI. An introductory letter, the NOI, 
background information on the 2008 Proposed Rule, and an offer for 
additional information or meetings were sent to the Tribes. The 2008 
Proposed Rule and DEIS were sent to each Tribe and each was contacted 
by phone to determine interest in meeting or obtaining information. The 
Tribes did not request additional government to government involvement, 
and no formal comments from any of the Tribes were received. A letter 
was sent to the Tribes with a draft version of this revised proposed 
rule and the Forest Service met with those Tribes requesting further 
consultation. In accordance with Executive Order 13175, consultation 
efforts will continue throughout the process and preparation of a final 
Rule.
    As a result of its July, August, and September 2008 notices, the 
Forest Service received approximately 106,000 responses of which 
105,000 were form letters. Responses included advocacy for a particular 
outcome or for specific regulatory language, and calls for compliance 
with laws and regulations. Some responses contained suggestions on 
further analyses and changes to issues, alternatives, and CRA 
boundaries.
    The RACNAC held public meetings in Washington, DC, and Salt Lake 
City, Utah, and submitted recommendations to the Secretary of 
Agriculture on December 5, 2008, to be considered in the development of 
the rule.
    Throughout the public involvement process, the USDA, Forest 
Service, and State repeatedly heard comments requesting a reduction in 
the scope of the Colorado State Petition's proposed exceptions for 
tree-cutting, sale, or removal and road construction and 
reconstruction. Based on the comments, the State requested the USDA 
postpone further rulemaking efforts until the State considered revision 
of its 2007 Petition.
    On August 3, 2009, the State of Colorado released a proposed 
revision of rule language to be used for its formulation of a revised 
petition to the public. The State received approximately 22,000 
comments during the 60-day comment period, the majority of which were 
form letters. The State considered the public comments and submitted a 
revised petition to the Secretary on April 6, 2010 (2010 Petition).
    Upon receipt of the revised petition and consideration of the 
public comments submitted on the petition, Secretary of Agriculture 
Thomas J. Vilsack instructed the Forest Service to ``analyze the 
potential of adding substantially to the number of acres receiving a 
higher level of protection'' (upper tier lands) than the 2001 Roadless 
Rule. The 2010 Petition contained 257,000 upper tier acres. Based on 
the Secretary's direction, acres were added such that there are now 
562,200 upper tier acres in this proposed rule. These areas were 
selected to become upper tier based on their roadless characteristics, 
and that they were already designated for higher levels of protection 
in either draft or final forest plans.
    The Forest Service analyzed four alternatives for managing roadless 
areas in this RDEIS. Alternative 1 uses provisions of the 2001 Roadless 
Rule and applies them to the 2001 roadless area inventory. Alternative 
2 is the proposed rule, applies the rule to inventoried Colorado 
Roadless Areas, and includes 562,200 acres in the upper tier. 
Alternative 3 uses forest plan direction to manage roadless areas, and 
alternative 4 uses the proposed rule direction, applies the direction 
to Colorado Roadless Areas, and includes approximately 2.6 million 
acres of upper tier. The RDEIS may be found at http://roadless.fs.fed.us. Following Secretarial instructions, as well as 
reviewing public comments received to date, and the RACNAC 
recommendations, the Forest Service in consultation with the State, 
made additional adjustments and clarifications to this proposed rule.

Roadless Area Inventories in Colorado

    Finally, the proposed rule includes an updated inventory of 
roadless areas. The 2007 State Petition proposed using the inventories 
used in the 2001 Roadless Rule. In some cases, these were based on 
inventories from the late 70s. Those inventories used mapping 
technologies that are now outdated, and also roads had been constructed 
between the time of the original inventories and their use in the 2001 
Roadless Rule. The Forest Service has reviewed and updated the 2001 
inventories for the purpose of this rulemaking; making technical 
corrections, removing private property and making other boundary 
adjustments, including additions and deletions due to land exchanges. 
Newly congressionally-designated areas have also been removed from the 
CRA inventory.
    During the public comment period on the 2008 Proposed Rule, 
comments were received on many of the boundaries of individual CRAs. 
The Forest Service and Colorado Department of Wildlife field staff 
worked jointly to identify corrections to the inventories used for the 
2008 Proposed Rule. Further information on the boundary changes and a 
description of the uniqueness of each CRA can be found at http://roadless.fs.fed.us.
    CRA boundaries have been adjusted where they overlap with ski areas 
that have special use authorizations or land use management plan 
allocations for ski areas that allow road construction.

[[Page 21275]]



              Proposed Net Change in Roadless Acres Designations by Forest--Inventoried Roadless Area Acres to Colorado Roadless Area Acres
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                                                          Corrected IRA
                                                                                            acres not    Roadless acres  Total roadless
                                                            2001 rule       Corrected       included        added to       acres to be     Proposed net
                                                            total IRA     Colorado IRA       within         Colorado      managed under       change
                                                              acres         acres \1\       Colorado     roadless areas   Colorado rule
                                                                                         roadless areas
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                                    Region 2 Colorado
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Arapaho-Roosevelt......................................         391,000         352,500          10,800           5,400         347,100          (5,400)
GMUG...................................................       1,127,000       1,058,300         280,800         124,200         901,900        (156,500)
Pike San Isabel........................................         688,000         667,300          63,000         170,300         774,600         107,300
Rio Grande.............................................         530,000         529,000          14,300           3,800         518,500         (10,500)
Routt..................................................         442,000         442,300          10,300           1,700         433,700          (8,600)
San Juan...............................................         604,000         543,600          76,600          98,900         565,900          22,300
White River............................................         640,000         639,500           7,500           4,700         636,700          (2,800)
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                                    Region 4 Colorado
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Manti La Sal...........................................          11,000          11,000           3,800             500           7,700          (3,300)
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    TOTAL STATE of COLORADO............................       4,433,000       4,243,600         467,100         409,500       4,186,000         (57,600)
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Column 1 acres rounded to nearest 1,000 acres; others rounded to nearest 100 acres. Totals may not add due to rounding.
\1\ Net acres after technical corrections to 2001 rule IRA map acres.

Land Management Planning Efforts

    The Agency is continuing land management planning efforts at the 
national level as well on several forests in Colorado concurrent with 
this rulemaking. The Rocky Mountain Region is presently conducting a 
revision of the San Juan National Forest land management plan and the 
revision schedule may be found at http://ocs.fortlewis.edu/forestplan. 
A complete schedule of plan revisions is posted at http://www.fs.fed.us/emc/nfma/includes/LRMPschedule.pdf. At the national 
level, the Agency is engaging in a revision of its land management 
planning regulations. Information is posted at http://www.fs.usda.gov/planningrule. Some provisions of this proposed rule use terminology and 
concepts from existing plans and planning regulations (e.g. ``sensitive 
species''). The use of such terminology is potentially subject to 
adjustment.

Specific Request for Public Comment

    The Agency is particularly interested in receiving public input 
regarding specific areas within the CRAs that should or should not be 
included in the upper tier lands including the reason for the inclusion 
or exclusion (see RDEIS, Appendix B and map packet); and what 
exceptions to the prohibitions on tree-cutting, sale, or removal, and 
road construction/reconstruction should apply to upper tier lands. In 
addition, the Agency is interested in receiving comments on effective 
means of managing linear facilities, such as electric power lines and 
telecommunications lines, within roadless areas in context of this 
proposed rule.

Section by Section Highlights of Changes From the July 2008 Proposed 
Rule

    This proposed rule replaces the proposed rule published in July 
2008. The section numbers of this proposed rule do not correspond with 
the numbering used in the 2008 Proposed Rule. Minor changes, edits, or 
corrections are not discussed.

Section 294.40 Purpose

    The purpose remains to provide State-specific direction for the 
protection of roadless areas on NFS land in Colorado that sustains 
roadless area characteristics now and for future generations.

Section 294.41 Definitions

    Several terms have been added for clarification and some terms have 
been removed where no longer needed.
    The term at-risk community as defined in section 101 of the Healthy 
Forest Restoration Act (HFRA) has been added.
    The term Colorado Roadless Area upper tier acres has been added. 
These are specific portions of or entire CRAs identified in the set of 
CRA maps. The proposed rule prohibits all tree-cutting, sale, or 
removal on these acres, except where incidental to the implementation 
of a management activity not otherwise prohibited by the rule, or as 
needed and appropriate for personal or administrative use. The proposed 
rule would prohibit all road construction or reconstruction on these 
lands, except where needed pursuant to reserved or outstanding rights 
or as provided for by statute or treaty. All 562,200 acres analyzed in 
alternative 2 of the RDEIS are part of the preferred alternative 
(proposed rule).
    The term Wildland Urban Interface (WUI) is removed and replaced by 
the term Community Protection Zone (CPZ). A CPZ is defined as either an 
area one-half mile from the boundary of an at-risk community or an area 
up to 1[frac12] miles from the boundary of an at-risk community where: 
the land has a sustained steep slope that creates the potential for 
wildfire behavior endangering the at-risk community; or has a 
geographic feature that aids in creating an effective fire break, such 
as a river or a ridge top; or where the trees are in condition class 3 
as defined by the HFRA. The CPZ is measured from the boundary of the 
at-risk community and not from the boundary of the CRA.
    The term hazardous fuels has been added. Hazardous fuels are 
defined as excessive live or dead wildland fuel accumulations that 
increase the potential for intense wildland fire and decrease the 
capability to protect life, property and other resources.
    The term roadless area characteristics has been retained, but 
modified from the definition offered in the 2008 Proposed Rule. The 
2008 definition indicated that the enumeration of the various resources 
and features was not intended to constitute in any way the 
establishment of any legal standard, requirement, or cause for any 
administrative appeal or legal action related to any project or 
activity

[[Page 21276]]

otherwise authorized by this rule. The 2010 State Petition recommended 
removing that language from the definition and inserting interpretive 
language in the scope and applicability section of the regulation. The 
proposed rule states in Sec.  294.40 that the intent of this regulation 
is to protect roadless areas. Activities must be designed to conserve 
the roadless area characteristics listed in Sec.  294.41, although the 
proposed rule acknowledges that applying the exceptions in Sec.  
294.42, Sec.  294.43, and Sec.  294.44 may have effects to some 
roadless area characteristics.
    The terms catchment, native cutthroat trout, and water influence 
zone have been added to describe requirements that provide additional 
protection for native cutthroat trout species when a road construction/
reconstruction or linear construction zone exception is authorized.
    The term linear construction zone has been added.
    The term utility has been removed, and replaced by linear facility 
which includes pipelines, electrical power lines, and telecommunication 
lines.
    The definition for water conveyance structures has been modified to 
include reservoirs to clarify that they are included under the 
exception for construction, reconstruction or maintenance of roads for 
authorized water conveyance structures. This exception in the proposed 
rule applies only to those water conveyance structures operated 
pursuant to a water court decree existing as of the date of the final 
rule.
    The term Pre-existing Water Court Decree has been defined.

Section 294.42 Prohibition on Tree-Cutting, Sale, or Removal

    On lands designated as upper tier, tree-cutting, sale, or removal 
would be prohibited except when the Responsible Official determines 
that the activity is consistent with the applicable land management 
plan (LMP), and incidental to the implementation of a management 
activity not otherwise prohibited, or as needed and appropriate for 
personal or administrative use. Upper tier areas provide for a higher 
level of protection than the 2001 Roadless Rule because the exceptions 
in the 2001 Roadless Rule to allow tree-cutting, sale or removal for 
species habitat and for maintenance and restoration of ecosystem 
composition and structure, including the reduction of risk of 
uncharacteristic wildfire effects, are not applied to upper tier in 
this proposed rule.
    On the remaining CRA lands, the proposed rule would require the 
Responsible Official to determine whether any proposed tree-cutting, 
sale, or removal project would be consistent with the applicable LMP, 
would maintain or improve one or more roadless area characteristic over 
the long-term, and would qualify as a listed exception. Tree-cutting 
incidental to a management activity otherwise authorized by this 
proposed rule or for personal or administrative use would not be 
required to maintain or improve one or more of the roadless area 
characteristics over the long-term.
    The exceptions concerning tree-cutting, sale, or removal allowed to 
reduce fuel loadings to moderate the potential effects of a 
catastrophic wildland fire have been refined. The proposed rule takes 
into account that homes that have been constructed adjacent to 
Colorado's national forests and the increasing threat of fire to these 
at-risk communities. Treating hazardous fuels, and creating safety 
zones for fire crews in areas around communities can make a difference 
in the ability of firefighters to control wildfire moving toward an at-
risk community. Such conditions have been a major consideration in 
developing the proposed rule language.
    In Colorado, about 340 of the HFRA at-risk communities listed in 
the Federal Register (66 FR 753, January 4, 2001) are within 1\1/2\ 
miles of a CRA. In the period between 1980 and 2008, over 1,700 
ignitions affecting over 45,000 acres occurred within roadless areas in 
Colorado. Over 45 percent of these ignitions and 25 percent of the 
acres burned were within the 1\1/2\ mile CPZ. The proposed rule allows 
flexible treatment prior to imminent fire activity and provides a more 
restrictive approach than the 2001 Rule by limiting fuel treatments to 
the CPZ. In addition, the proposed rule, by requiring treatment areas 
beyond one-half mile from an at-risk community to be identified in a 
Community Wildfire Protection Plan (CWPP), ensures consideration of 
community and practitioner knowledge about conditions in a specific 
area.
    Within the CPZ, tree-cutting, sale, or removal may occur within the 
first one-half mile of a CPZ only when the Regional Forester determines 
it is needed to reduce the wildfire hazard to either an at-risk 
community or a municipal water supply system, including reservoirs and 
dams, diversion structures, headgates, canals, ditches, tunnels, 
pipelines, and other surface facilities and systems.
    Within the outer one mile of the CPZ, tree-cutting, sale, or 
removal, if determined to be needed by the Regional Forester, may only 
occur in an area identified in a CWPP. The CPZ would still be the 
maximum boundary for allowed treatments within CRAs. If the CPZ 
boundary exceeds the CWPP boundary, treatments would be limited to the 
CWPP area.
    Projects within the CPZ are to be focused on small diameter trees 
to create fuel conditions to modify fire behavior while retaining large 
trees to the maximum extent practical, as appropriate to the forest 
type. In forest types such as lodgepole pine, trees may be dead or 
dying, regardless of size, and may need to be removed, both to prevent 
hazards to firefighters from falling and fallen trees, and for 
successful hazardous fuel reduction.
    Tree-cutting, sale, or removal for the protection of municipal 
water supply systems outside of a CPZ is allowed only if the Regional 
Forester determines that a significant risk exists to the municipal 
water supply system or the maintenance of that system. This section 
states that a significant risk exists under conditions in which the 
history of fire occurrence and fire hazard and risk indicate a serious 
likelihood that a wildland fire disturbance event would present a high 
risk of threat to a municipal water supply system.
    Projects outside of the CPZ are to be focused on small diameter 
trees to create fuel conditions to modify fire behavior, while 
retaining large trees to the maximum extent practical as appropriate to 
the forest type. It is expected such projects will be infrequent.
    The requested exception that allows tree-cutting, sale, or removal 
to prevent or suppress an insect or disease epidemic has been replaced 
with an exception that allows tree-cutting, sale, or removal to restore 
the characteristics of ecosystem, composition, structure and processes. 
This exception is intended to be used infrequently.
    Tree-cutting, sale or removal for the purposes of wildlife habitat 
improvement is limited to Federally threatened, endangered, and 
proposed species or those listed as a regionally designated sensitive 
species by the Forest Service, instead of all wildlife and plant 
species as was allowed in the previously proposed rule.
    Tree-cutting that is incidental to a management activity that is 
otherwise not prohibited by the rule is allowed. Examples include, but 
are not limited to, trail construction or maintenance; removal of 
hazard trees adjacent to forest roads for public health and safety 
reasons; fire line construction for wildland fire suppression or 
control of

[[Page 21277]]

prescribed fire; survey and maintenance of property boundaries; or for 
road construction and linear construction zones where allowed by this 
rule.
    Tree-cutting for personal or administrative use is allowed and 
includes, but is not limited to, activities such as Christmas tree and 
firewood cutting.

Section 294.43 Prohibition on Road Construction and Reconstruction

    The proposed rule revises the exceptions to the prohibitions on 
road construction or reconstruction from the previous proposal. Upper 
tier land designations have been added that prohibit all road 
construction/reconstruction, except when pursuant to reserved or 
outstanding rights or as provided for by statute or treaty. Even in 
such a situation, the Responsible Official would be required to make a 
series of determinations to decide whether a proposal fits the 
exception within the upper tier lands. The determinations would 
include: consideration of technically feasible options without road 
construction; when proposing to construct a forest road, consideration 
of whether a temporary road would provide reasonable access; and within 
a native cutthroat trout catchment or identified recovery watershed, a 
determination whether road construction will diminish, over the long-
term, conditions in the water influence zone and in the native 
cutthroat habitat.
    The rule provisions concerning proposed road construction or 
reconstruction for authorized water conveyance structures have been 
modified. The definition of water conveyances has been expanded to 
include reservoirs, and the exception is limited only to those 
conveyances operated pursuant to a pre-existing water court decree as 
of the effective date of a final rule. Water court decrees dated after 
the final date of the rule would not be eligible for roaded access in 
CRAs. Finally, the Regional Forester would be required to determine the 
need for the road access.
    The exception for temporary road construction associated with tree-
cutting, sale, or removal to reduce the wildfire hazard to an at-risk 
community or municipal water supply system and tree-cutting associated 
with maintenance and restoration of characteristics of ecosystem 
composition, structure and processes, is limited to the first half mile 
of the CPZ and would require a determination by the Regional Forester.
    The road construction exception for the management of livestock 
grazing has been eliminated. New grazing authorizations would be 
limited to use of existing roads.
    Temporary road construction may be authorized when associated with 
exploration or development of an oil and gas lease that was issued 
prior to the effective date of the rule and when the lease and 
stipulations do not prohibit surface occupancy or roading.
    Approximately 9,000 acres of the Currant Creek CRA, have been 
removed from the North Fork Coal Mining Area exception due to public 
comments regarding the wildlife values of this particular CRA and the 
lack of existing coal leases in this area. In the remaining proposed 
20,000 acres, temporary road construction would be allowed for coal 
exploration and coal-related surface support activities, such as the 
drilling of vent holes to extract methane gas to facilitate miner 
safety. These same temporary roads could also be used for the purpose 
of collecting and transporting coal mine methane to avoid venting 
methane into the atmosphere. The authorized road right-of-way would 
serve as the site for buried infrastructure, such as pipelines. The 
proposed rule allows for the opportunity to develop this important low-
sulfur, cleaner-burning coal resource in a limited portion of the CRA 
inventory, with areas being returned to long term management for 
roadless area protection following the decommissioning of the 
associated temporary roads.
    Under all road exceptions, projects would have to be designed and 
completed to reduce unnecessary or unreasonable surface disturbance. 
All roads constructed would be decommissioned and the affected 
landscape restored when a road was no longer needed for the original 
purpose and/or when the authorization expired, whichever was sooner. 
These decommissioning requirements would be included in all related 
contracts or permits and could not be waived.
    To prevent roads from affecting the landscape longer than intended, 
temporary roads authorized under this subpart would not be converted to 
a forest road (be designated as a permanent road), unless the specific 
exception under which the temporary road was constructed allows for 
forest road construction and reconstruction. All roads would also 
restrict use to the purpose for the road, limiting the traffic and 
overall impact to the area. Motorized use by the general public 
including use by off-highway vehicles would be prohibited. General use 
restrictions would not apply to administrative use by the Forest 
Service, motor vehicle use that is specifically under an authorization 
issued under Federal law or regulation, or use for public health and 
safety or law enforcement reasons. Maintenance of temporary or forest 
roads would be permitted.

Section 294.44 Prohibition on Linear Construction Zones

    Prohibitions on linear construction zones (LCZs) have been added to 
the proposed rule. The 2001 Roadless Rule did not restrict the use of 
LCZs. LCZs would be prohibited in CRAs unless they meet one of three 
exceptions: water conveyance structures with a pre-existing water court 
decree; electrical power or telecommunication lines; and pipelines 
associated with oil and gas leases that allow surface use within CRAs 
or an oil and gas lease outside of CRA that connects to infrastructure 
inside of CRAs. For all three LCZ exceptions, the Regional Forester 
would be required to determine that motorized access is not possible 
without an LCZ that the LCZ is consistent with applicable LMP, and that 
in the long term the LCZ will not diminish conditions in native 
cutthroat trout habitat.
    The Regional Forester may authorize a LCZ when needed for 
construction, reconstruction, or maintenance of an authorized water 
conveyance structure that was operated pursuant to a pre-existing water 
court decree, as of the effective date of this rule. This exception is 
similar to the road construction/reconstruction for water conveyance 
structures, but can be selected when a road is not necessary.
    Colorado's petition and public comment identify that the current 
electrical power line system, some of which is already located in CRAs, 
will need to be maintained and upgraded. Additionally, demand for 
additional lines is expected. The rule recognizes these possibilities 
and would allow LCZs, when appropriate, as the method requiring the 
least disturbance. For the construction, reconstruction, or maintenance 
of existing or future electrical power lines or telecommunication lines 
within a CRA, the Regional Forester would determine if a LCZ is needed. 
The rule further clarifies that any future electrical power lines or 
telecommunication lines could only be authorized within a CRA if there 
is no opportunity for the project to be implemented outside the CRA 
without causing substantially greater environmental damage. The agency 
is inviting public comments on this exception.

[[Page 21278]]

    The rule similarly recognizes that it may be appropriate to 
authorize a LCZ within CRAs to allow the movement of product to market 
from within a pre-existing oil and gas lease within the CRA. The 
proposed rule also allows an LCZ when a proponent requests to connect 
from outside the CRA to an existing infrastructure within a CRA in 
order to avoid creation of a duplicate pipeline system and unnecessary 
environmental harm. The Regional Forester would be required to 
determine that such a connection would cause substantially less 
environmental damage than alternative routes. An LCZ would not be 
allowed for new pipelines that would merely pass through a CRA.
    All LCZs would be constructed in a manner that minimizes ground 
disturbance, and would include a reclamation plan. After installation 
of the linear facility, the LCZ and all areas of surface disturbance 
would be reclaimed according to the reclamation plan, and those 
requirements would not be waived.

Section 294.45 Environmental Documentation

    The Forest Service will comply with NEPA for activities within 
CRAs. The Forest Service NEPA regulations at 36 CFR 220.5(a)(2) 
normally require preparation of an EIS for any proposal that would 
substantially alter the undeveloped character of an inventoried 
roadless area, including CRAs.
    The Forest Service would be required to offer the State of Colorado 
cooperating agency status for all proposed projects and planning events 
within CRAs. When the Forest Service is not the lead agency and does 
not have the authority to offer formal cooperating agency status to the 
State of Colorado, the Forest Service would offer to coordinate with 
the State.

Section 294.46 Other Activities

    The proposed rule would prohibit temporary and permanent road 
construction and reconstruction associated with new oil and gas leases 
issued within a Colorado Roadless Area. Some comments suggested that 
the Colorado Roadless Rule establish restrictions to be applied 
retroactively to oil and gas leases within CRAs. The proposed rule does 
not implement that suggestion. Consistent with other past Department 
rulemakings concerning roadless area management, this proposed rule is 
not designed or intended to alter previously approved decisions but 
instead establishes prospective management direction for the protection 
and management of CRAs. Nevertheless, the proposed rule would establish 
requirements to limit future discretionary decisions concerning oil and 
gas leasing within CRAs. Specifically, the proposed rule would require 
that only temporary roads could be developed in association with pre-
existing leases. In addition, the proposed rule would prohibit the 
Agency from authorizing the Bureau of Land Management to grant any 
request for a waiver, exception, or modification to any oil or gas 
lease, if doing so would result in any road construction within a 
Colorado Roadless Area beyond that authorized at the time of issuance 
of the lease.
    Comments were also received for and against establishment of a 
prohibition on new oil and gas leasing or surface occupancy within 
CRAs. Again, like prior rules, the proposed rule does not establish 
such prohibitions. Instead, the proposed rule would allow only such 
leasing that can be accomplished without road construction or 
reconstruction and would require mandatory and non-waiveable 
stipulations prohibiting road construction. The proposed rule 
identifies regulatory requirements in 36 CFR 294.44 that would be 
imposed for any linear construction zone associated with new leases.
    The proposed rule also confirms that the forest travel management 
processes will continue to be used for all future decisions regarding 
motorized and non motorized use on trails within CRAs. Motorized access 
not involving the construction or reconstruction of roads would 
continue according to existing authorizations. CRA designation would 
not eliminate or preclude any lands from being available for livestock 
grazing.

Section 294.47 Modifications and Administrative Corrections

    The Chief of the Forest Service would be able to modify CRA 
boundaries based on a changed circumstance such as, the inclusion or 
exclusion of lands due to land exchanges, and updated inventories. Such 
changes to the boundaries would require public notice and a minimum 90-
day public comment period. Changes due to new congressional 
designations would not require a modification, and would be adjusted to 
conform to the applicable statute.
    The Chief of the Forest Service would be able to make 
administrative corrections to CRA boundaries. Administrative 
corrections would require public notice and a 30-day comment period. 
Administrative corrections include adjustments such as to correct 
clerical errors or to reflect improved field data due to updated 
imagery, global positioning data, or other collected field data.
    Rulemaking would be required for any modification to final rule 
language. The Secretary would provide for public notice and a minimum 
90-day comment period, and the State would be consulted on any 
rulemaking proposals.

Section 294.48 Scope and Applicability

    The proposed rule's applicability would be limited to 
authorizations for occupancy and use of NFS lands issued after the 
effective date of a final rule. The proposed rule's provisions would 
not affect project or activity decisions issued prior to the effective 
date of a final rule.
    Components of a LMP can be more restrictive than the rule and will 
continue to provide guidance and direction for projects within CRAs. 
The proposed rule does not compel amendment or revision of a LMP. A 
project decision or LMP amendment or revision may not waive or 
supersede the provisions of this proposed rule.
    The proposed rule does not waive any requirements during project 
analyses to consult with Tribes and other agencies, comply with 
applicable laws, and involve the public.
    If any provision of the rule or its application were held to be 
invalid, the Department's intention is that the remainder of the 
regulation would remain in force.
    After promulgation of a final rule, the rule promulgated on January 
12, 2001, would have no effect within the State of Colorado.

Section 294.49 List of Designated Colorado Roadless Areas

    There are 363 Colorado Roadless Areas in the proposed rule; an 
increase of 18 CRAs from the July 2008 Proposed Rule.

Regulatory Certifications

Regulatory Planning and Review

    The proposed rule was reviewed under USDA procedures, Executive 
Order 12866 (E.O. 12866), and the major rule provisions of the Small 
Business Regulatory Enforcement and Fairness Act (5 U.S.C. 800). E.O. 
12866 addresses regulatory planning and review and requires agencies 
conduct a regulatory impact assessment for economically significant 
regulatory actions. Economically significant regulatory actions are 
those that have an annual effect on the economy of $100 million or 
more, or adversely affect the economy or economic sectors. Total annual

[[Page 21279]]

output associated with oil, gas, and coal production in the affected 
areas is projected to be approximately $970 million under the proposed 
rule, compared to approximately $1,030 million under baseline 
conditions, implying the annual impact of the proposed rule is 
estimated to be a decrease of approximately $60 million for energy 
mineral sectors. Due to the potential magnitude of economic impacts and 
the level of interest in inventoried roadless area management, this 
proposed rule has been designated as significant and is subject to 
Office of Management and Budget (OMB) review under E.O. 12866.
    A regulatory impact assessment has been prepared for this proposed 
rule. OMB Circular A-4 as well as guidance regarding E.O. 12866 
indicate that regulatory impact analysis should include an assessment 
of distributional effects. The benefits, costs, and distributional 
effects of four alternatives are analyzed over a 15-year time period. 
These four alternatives referred to as follows: Alternative 1--the 
provisions of the 2001 Roadless Rule (2001 rule); alternative 2--the 
proposed Colorado Roadless Rule (proposed rule); alternative 3--Forest 
Plans (no action); and alternative 4 (the proposed rule with public 
identified upper tier acreage). The difference between alternative 2 
and 4 is the number and location of upper tier acres identified within 
the CRAs. For the purpose of regulatory impact assessment, the forest 
plan alternative represents baseline conditions or goods and services 
provided by NFS lands in the near future in the absence of the proposed 
rule. In August 2008, the Wyoming District Court set aside and enjoined 
the 2001 Roadless Rule. Colorado is under the Wyoming Court's ruling. 
In the revised DEIS the baseline conditions are therefore assumed to 
mean that IRAs in Colorado will be managed according to direction set 
forth in the applicable forest plan (alternative 3).
    The proposed rule is programmatic in nature and intended to guide 
future development of proposed actions in roadless areas. The proposed 
rule is intended to provide greater management flexibility under 
certain circumstances to address unique and local land management 
challenges, while continuing to conserve roadless values and 
characteristics. Increased management flexibility is primarily needed 
to reduce hazardous fuels around communities to allow access to coal 
reserves in the North Fork coal mining areas, and to allow access to 
future water conveyances.
    The proposed rule does not authorize the implementation of any 
ground-disturbing activities, but rather it describes circumstances 
under which certain activities may be allowed or restricted in roadless 
areas. Before authorizing land use activities in roadless areas, the 
Forest Service must complete a more detailed and site-specific 
environmental analysis pursuant to the National Environmental Policy 
Act (NEPA) and its implementing regulations.
    Because the proposed rule does not prescribe site-specific 
activities, it is difficult to predict changes in benefits and costs or 
other changes under the different alternatives. It should also be 
emphasized that the types of benefits derived from uses of roadless 
areas in Colorado are far ranging and include a number of non-market 
and non-use benefit categories that are difficult to measure in 
monetary terms. As a consequence, benefits are not monetized, nor are 
net present values or benefit cost ratios estimated. Instead, increases 
and/or losses in benefits are discussed separately for each resource 
area in a quantitative or qualitative manner. Benefits and costs are 
organized and discussed in the context of local land management 
challenges or concerns (`local challenges') and `roadless area 
characteristics' in an effort to remain consistent with the overall 
purpose of the proposed rule, recognizing that benefits associated with 
local challenges may trigger or overlap with benefits associated with 
roadless area characteristics in some cases (e.g., forest health). 
Access and designations for motorized versus non-motorized recreation 
is a topic raised in comments, however, the proposed rule does not 
provide direction on where and when off-highway vehicle (OHV) use would 
be permissible and makes clear that travel planning-related actions 
should be addressed through travel management planning and individual 
forest plans.
    Distributional effects or economic impacts, in terms of jobs and 
labor income, are quantified for the oil and gas and the coal sectors 
for an economic area consisting of five Colorado counties (Delta, 
Garfield, Mesa, Montrose, and Rio Blanco) using a regional impact 
model. Fiscal impacts (i.e., mineral lease payments) are estimated for 
counties where changes in mineral activity are expected to be 
physically located (Delta, Garfield, Gunnison, Mesa, Montrose, and 
Pitkin). The distributional effects associated with reducing wildfire 
hazard are characterized by estimating the extent to which CPZ areas 
(i.e., 0.5 to 1.5 mile buffer areas surrounding communities at-risk 
from wildfire) overlap roadless areas where tree-cutting for fuel 
treatments has been identified as being likely to occur. Distributional 
effects or economic impacts are not evaluated for other economic 
sectors (e.g., timber harvest, recreation) due to evidence presented in 
Table 2 suggesting that the extent or magnitude of changes in output or 
services are not sufficient to cause significant changes in jobs and 
income for those economic sectors.
    Details about the environmental impacts associated with the 
proposed rule can be found in the RDEIS. Effects on opportunities for 
small entities under the proposed rule are discussed in the context of 
E. O. 13272 regarding proper consideration of small entities and the 
Small Business Regulatory Enforcement Fairness Act of 1996 (SBREFA), 
which amended the Regulatory Flexibility Act (5 U.S.C. 601 et seq.).
    The results of the regulatory impact assessment for the proposed 
rule are summarized in the following tables. Table 1 provides 
information related to roadless area acreage, road miles, and tree-
cutting. Table 2 summarizes the potential benefits and costs of 
alternatives 1, 2, 3 and 4. Table 3 summarizes distributional effects 
and economic impacts of the proposed rule and alternatives.

       Table 1--Framework for Analysis: Comparison of Roadless Area Acreage, Road Miles, and Tree-Cutting
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                                                                 Alternative 4
                                                                                              Proposed Rule with
                                  Alternative 1 2001     Alternative 2       Alternative 3     Public Identified
                                     Roadless Rule       Proposed Rule       Forest Plans      Upper Tier Acres
                                                                                                      \1\
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Roadless Areas..................  Inventoried         Colorado Roadless   4,243,600 acres...  Colorado Roadless
                                   Roadless Areas      Areas (CRAs) =                          Areas
                                   (IRAs) =            4,186,000 acres.                       (CRAs) = 4,186,000
                                   4,243,600 acres.                                            acres.
Total Existing Authorized Road    1,260 miles in      8.5 miles in CRAs.  1,260 miles in      8.5 miles in CRAs.
 Miles in Roadless Areas \1\.      IRAs.                                   IRAs.

[[Page 21280]]

 
Road Construction and             14 miles/year (11   20 miles/year (16   28 miles/year.....  18 miles/year (14
 Reconstruction Projected in the   miles in IRAs).     in CRAs).                               in CRAs).
 Analysis Area.
Tree-cutting Projected in the     2,300 acres/year    7,000 acres/year    16,900 acres/year.  3,000 acres/year
 Analysis Area.                    (1,200 in IRAs).    (5,800 acres in                         (1,800 acres in
                                                       CRAs).                                  CRAs).
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
\1\ Approximately 24 miles of roads are projected to be decommissioned in IRAs and 8 miles decommissioned in
  CRAs. Alternative 4 is the same as Alternative 2 with the exception that more roadless areas are assigned to
  the upper tier restrictions.


                        Table 2--Comparison of Environmental Consequences by Alternative
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                                                                 Alternative 4
                                  Alternative 1 2001     Alternative 2    Alternative 3  (No  Proposed Rule with
   Issue or affected  resource       Roadless Rule       Proposed Rule      Action) Forest    Public  Identified
                                                                                 Plans         Upper Tier Acres
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                            Local Challenges and Resources: Roadless Area Management
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Fire and Fuels (Hazardous Fuel    Tree-cutting        Tree-cutting        Tree-cutting        Tree-cutting
 Reductions).                      projected for       projected for       projected for       projected for
                                   1,800 acres per     5,900 acres per     13,100 acres per    2,200 acres per
                                   year in the         year in the         year in the         year in the
                                   analysis area to    analysis area to    analysis area to    analysis area to
                                   reduce hazardous    reduce fuels        reduce fuels;       reduce fuels
                                   fuels (900 of       (5,300 of which     this amounts to     (1,600 of which
                                   which are within    are within CRAs);   20% of annual       are within CRAs);
                                   IRAs); this         this amounts to     fuel treatments     this amounts to
                                   amounts to 3% of    9% of annual fuel   on all NFS lands    3% of annual fuel
                                   average annual      treatments on all   in CO.              treatments on all
                                   fuel treatments     NFS lands in CO.   Greatest             NFS lands in CO.
                                   on all NFS lands   More flexibility     flexibility to     Within the CRAs
                                   in CO.              to conduct          conduct hazardous   that are not
                                  Least flexibility    hazardous fuel      fuel reduction      upper tier acres,
                                   to conduct          reduction and       and reduce fire     the flexibility
                                   hazardous fuel      reduce fire risk    risk to             to conduct
                                   reduction and       to communities      communities and     hazardous fuel
                                   reduce fire risk    and municipal       municipal water     reduction and
                                   to communities      water supply        supply systems.     reduce fire risk
                                   and municipal       systems.                                to communities
                                   water supply       Unable to conduct                        and municipal
                                   systems.            hazardous fuels                         water supply
                                                       reduction on 12%                        systems is
                                                       of 0.5 mile CPZ                         identical to
                                                       and 13% of 1.5                          alternative 2,
                                                       mile CPZ due to                         but there are
                                                       upper tier acre                         more upper tier
                                                       prohibitions.                           acres that cannot
                                                                                               be treated.
                                                                                              Unable to conduct
                                                                                               hazardous fuels
                                                                                               reduction on 48%
                                                                                               of 0.5 mile CPZ
                                                                                               and 52% of 1.5
                                                                                               mile CPZ due to
                                                                                               upper tier acre
                                                                                               prohibitions.
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Ecosystem Maintenance and         500 acres per year  1,000 acres per     3,500 acres per     800 acres per year
 Restoration Treatments.           in the analysis     year in the         year within the     in the analysis
                                   area have           analysis area       analysis area       area have
                                   projected tree-     have projected      have projected      projected tree-
                                   cutting             tree-cutting        tree-cutting        cutting
                                   activities (300     activities (400     activities.         activities (200
                                   acres within        acres within       Greatest             acres within
                                   IRAs). Fewest       CRAs). More         opportunities to    CRAs). More
                                   opportunities to    opportunities       maintain and        opportunities to
                                   maintain and        than alternatives   restore ecosystem   maintain and
                                   restore ecosystem   1 and 4, but        characteristics,    restore ecosystem
                                   characteristics,    fewer               including           characteristics,
                                   including           opportunities       resilience to       including
                                   resilience to       than alternative    insect and          resilience to
                                   insect and          4 to maintain and   disease outbreaks   insect and
                                   disease outbreaks   restore ecosystem   and climate-        disease outbreaks
                                   and climate-        characteristics,    induced stressors.  and climate-
                                   induced stressors.  including                               induced stressors
                                                       resilience to                           than alternative
                                                       insect and                              1 but less than
                                                       disease outbreaks                       alternative 3 and
                                                       and climate-                            alternative 2 due
                                                       induced                                 to upper tier
                                                       stressors. Unable                       acres.
                                                       to treat upper
                                                       tier acres.
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Timber..........................  Tree-cutting (sale or removal) in the roadless analysis area is projected to
                                   occur in association with treatments on 2,300, 3,000, 7,000, and 16,900 acres
                                   per year respectively under Alternatives 1, 2, 3, and 4. However, average
                                   annual treatment acreage on all NFS land is not expected to be affected
                                   substantially by the alternatives, with the only change being the extent to
                                   which treatments occur in roadless versus non-roadless areas on NFS lands.
                                   Minimal impacts to the wood products sector are therefore expected.
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Oil and Gas.....................  Projections are for approximately 686   Projections are     Same as
                                   oil and gas wells in the analysis       for approximately   Alternative 1 and
                                   area with access to 1,046 bcfg over a   783 oil and gas     2.
                                   15-year period (same for Alternatives   wells in the
                                   1, 2, and 4). Projected annual road     analysis area
                                   construction and reconstruction is      with access to
                                   about 10 miles in roadless areas.       1,154 bcfg over a
                                                                           15-year period,
                                                                           providing
                                                                           slightly more
                                                                           opportunity
                                                                           compares to the
                                                                           other
                                                                           alternatives.
                                                                           Annual road
                                                                           construction/
                                                                           reconstruction is
                                                                           11 miles.
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

[[Page 21281]]

 
Coal Analysis Area..............  Projections are     Projections are     Projections are     Same as
                                   for 16 miles of     for 52 miles of     for 73 miles of     Alternative 2.
                                   new roads in the    new roads in the    new roads in the
                                   analysis area, of   analysis area, of   analysis area, of
                                   which 7 are in      which 50 are in     which 64 are in
                                   IRAs.               CRAs.               areas that
                                  Restricts access    Reduces              overlap IRAs.
                                   to potential coal   restrictions on    Least restrictive
                                   resources in IRAs   access to           on access to
                                   more than other     potential coal      potential coal
                                   alternatives.       resources in CRAs   resources in IRAs
                                  8,600 acres of       compared to the     compared to the
                                   road-accessible     2001 rule, but is   other two
                                   reserves (7,100     more restrictive    alternatives.
                                   in current          than Alternative   39,600 acres of
                                   leases; 1,500 in    3 (limits new       road-accessible
                                   unleased areas      roads to the        reserves (7,100
                                   outside of IRAs)    North Fork coal     in current
                                   with access to      mining area).       leases; 32,500 in
                                   157 million tons.  27,500 acres of      unleased areas)
                                                       road-accessible     with access to
                                                       reserves (7,100     724 million tons.
                                                       in current
                                                       leases; 18,900 in
                                                       unleased areas
                                                       outside of CRAs)
                                                       with access to
                                                       514 million tons.
                                                       Within North Fork
                                                       coal mining area,
                                                       15,600 unleased
                                                       within CRAs, 5300
                                                       in unleased areas
                                                       outside of CRAs.
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Geothermal......................  Opportunities for geothermal development in roadless areas would not occur
                                   under the 2001 rule, the proposed rule, and Alternative 4 due to new road
                                   prohibitions. Opportunities for geothermal development in roadless areas
                                   would occur under the forest plans alternative as most land management plans
                                   allow new roads in roadless areas for this purpose. There are no current
                                   leases on NFS lands in Colorado, though potential for geothermal resources is
                                   being studied.
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Public Safety...................  All of the alternatives provide flexibility to respond to emergency situations
                                   or major threats to public health and safety in roadless areas (refer to
                                   features common to all alternatives). In contrast, the potential for
                                   accidents and safety hazards increases as the amount of activity and traffic
                                   increases. The Forest Service will continue to respond to wildfires, chemical
                                   or oil spills, abandoned mine hazards, road-design hazards, hazard trees, and
                                   other similar situations. Roads for this purpose must be temporary under the
                                   proposed rule, and would be expected to be temporary under the 2001 rule and
                                   forest plans. Upper tier acres in Alternatives 2 and 4 do not have a specific
                                   public health and safety exception for road construction, as does alternative
                                   1.
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Special Uses: Non-recreational    Special use authorizations issued prior to the effective date of rulemaking
 (pipelines, electrical or         would be unaffected.
 telecommunication lines, water
 conveyances).
                                 -------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                  Future special use  Future special use  Future special use  Same as
                                   authorizations in   authorizations in   authorizations      alternative 2.
                                   IRAs would          CRAs would          would generally
                                   generally           generally           allow for road
                                   prohibit road       prohibit road       construction;
                                   construction, but   construction.       except where
                                   there would be no  Limited exceptions   prohibited under
                                   prohibition on      for the             forest plans.
                                   the use of LCZs.    construction of    There would be no
                                  3.2 miles per year   LCZ for future      prohibition on
                                   of LCZs projected.  oil and gas         the construction
                                                       pipelines,          of LCZs.
                                                       electrical power   3.6 miles per year
                                                       lines or            of LCZs projected.
                                                       telecommunication
                                                       lines, and water
                                                       conveyance
                                                       structures in
                                                       CRAs.
                                                      3.2 miles per year
                                                       of LCZs projected.
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Developed Ski Areas.............  Least               Greater             Same as             Same as
                                   opportunities for   opportunity for     alternative 2.      alternative 2.
                                   ski area            ski area           Forest plans can
                                   development and     development and     be amended or
                                   expansion.          expansion.          revised to expand
                                  Road construction   Road construction    ski area
                                   and tree-cutting    and tree-cutting    allocations
                                   permitted on        permitted on        beyond the
                                   6,600 acres         6,600 acres under   current
                                   within IRA          permit as well as   allocation.
                                   boundaries and      the additional
                                   also under permit   1,700 acres of
                                   prior to the        ski areas
                                   effective date of   allocated under
                                   this rule. Roads    forest plans and
                                   and tree-cutting    located outside
                                   would be            existing permits.
                                   prohibited in
                                   1,700 acres of
                                   ski areas
                                   allocated under
                                   forest plans but
                                   outside of
                                   existing permits.
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Other Developed Recreation......  Only one mile of new road is current projected for recreational purposes over
                                   the next 15 years under No Action; effects on developed recreation
                                   opportunities therefore do not differ substantially across alternatives.
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Livestock Management............  None of the projected activities in roadless areas that vary by alternative
                                   would be likely to have any substantial beneficial or adverse impacts on
                                   livestock management operations in roadless area grazing allotments.
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                    Roadless Area Characteristics and Values
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Scenic Quality..................  Projected activity levels (e.g., tree-cutting) occur on relatively small
                                   percentages of total roadless area under all alternatives.
                                 -------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                  Least risk to       More risk to        Greatest risk to    Same as
                                   scenic resources.   scenic resources    scenic resources.   alternative 2
                                                       than alternatives                       within CRA
                                                       1 and 4. Upper                          boundaries that
                                                       tier acres same                         are not upper
                                                       as alternative 1.                       tier; upper tier
                                                                                               areas same as
                                                                                               alternative 1.
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

[[Page 21282]]

 
Wilderness and Other              No major difference among the alternatives related to the risk of adverse
 Congressionally Designated        effects on congressionally designated areas. There would be no potential
 Areas.                            direct effect on these areas as they are outside the roadless areas that are
                                   the subject of each alternative.
                                  Effects on areas in forest plans as recommended wilderness would not differ by
                                   alternative as land management plans generally prohibit road construction and
                                   tree-cutting and removal activities in those areas. However, restrictions on
                                   activities in IRAs under the 2001 rule provide a greater opportunity to
                                   maintain future options for recommending roadless acres as wilderness in the
                                   future, compared to the proposed rule and forest plans.
                                 -------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                  Indirect effects on wilderness area     Higher risk of      Similar to
                                   characteristics or experience from      indirect adverse    Alternatives 1
                                   activities in adjacent roadless areas   effects on          and 2. Greater
                                   are expected to be low under            wilderness          opportunity to
                                   Alternatives 1 and 2 because            experience from     establish uniform
                                   projected activities are not expected   activities in the   management
                                   to occur adjacent to wilderness area    analysis area due   approaches for
                                   boundaries.                             to higher           recommended
                                                                           likelihood that     wilderness
                                                                           activities could    through placement
                                                                           occur adjacent to   of roadless areas
                                                                           wilderness          in upper tier.
                                                                           boundaries.
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Soil............................  No major difference among alternatives related to the risk of soil impacts.
                                   Alternative 1 and 4 would have the least risk of adverse effects, and
                                   alternative 2 would have a slightly higher risk, followed by alternative 3.
                                   However, these differences are expected to be small in magnitude and spread
                                   over a wide geographic area. Most of the potential effects would be mitigated
                                   by site-specific mitigation measures. The risk of post-fire soil erosion may
                                   be higher under Alternative 1 and lowest under Alternative 3 as a result of
                                   projected levels of fuel treatments.
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Water and Water Quality.........  Activities under all alternatives are unlikely to contribute to water quality
                                   impairment (i.e., exceeding water quality standards) due to application of
                                   mitigation measures and BMPs as a result of NEPA process and site-specific
                                   analysis.
                                 -------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                  Lowest risk of      Slightly greater    Higher risk of      Similar to
                                   direct adverse      risk of direct      direct adverse      Alternative 2
                                   effects from tree-  adverse effects     effects from tree-  though slightly
                                   cutting and road    from tree-cutting   cutting and road    lower risk from
                                   construction.       and road            construction.       tree-cutting and
                                   Higher risk from    construction.      Greatest decrease    road construction
                                   adverse impacts     Decreased risks     in risk from        activities.
                                   from floods and     from floods and     floods and
                                   sedimentation       sedimentation       sedimentation
                                   resulting from      resulting from      resulting from
                                   wildfires.          wildfire,           wildfire due to
                                                       relative to         increased fuel
                                                       alternatives 1      treatments to
                                                       and 4, due to       protect
                                                       increased fuel      communities and/
                                                       treatments to       or water supplies.
                                                       protect
                                                       communities and/
                                                       or water supplies.
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Air Resources...................  Differences in effects on air quality do not substantially differ between the
                                   alternatives. Atmospheric emissions within the analysis area are not expected
                                   to increase to a level that would be likely to exceed State or Federal air
                                   quality standards.
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Threatened Endangered or          No adverse impacts to threatened or endangered plants because no road
 Sensitive Plants.                 construction or tree-cutting, sale, or removal is projected to occur where
                                   threatened or endangered plants exist. Site-specific design criteria and
                                   mitigation measures are expected to minimize risk. Individual sensitive
                                   plants may be affected by projected activities; however, none of the
                                   alternatives are expected to result in the loss of viability nor cause a
                                   trend toward Federal listing of sensitive species.
                                 -------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                  Least risk to       More risk of        Greatest risk of    More risk of
                                   adverse impacts     adverse impacts     adverse impacts     adverse impacts
                                   to sensitive        to sensitive        to sensitive        to sensitive
                                   plants, including   plants, including   plants, including   plants, including
                                   threats from        threats from        threats from        threats from
                                   invasives.          invasives, than     invasives.          invasives, than
                                                       alternatives 1 or                       alternative 1;
                                                       4; less than                            less than
                                                       alternative 3.                          alternatives 2 or
                                                                                               3.
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Aquatic Species and Habitat.....  No long-term adverse effects are expected on threatened and endangered (T&E)
                                   species, sensitive species, and MIS population trends; downstream T&E
                                   species; or wetlands and riparian areas under any alternative due to the
                                   assumption that mitigation measures and best management practices would help
                                   avoid or minimize impacts from the projected activities.
                                 -------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                  Least risk for      Increase in risk    Greatest potential  Lower risk of
                                   adverse impacts     of adverse          for adverse         adverse impacts
                                   on aquatic          impacts to          impacts to          to aquatic
                                   species.            aquatic species.    aquatic species.    species compared
                                                       Provides greater                        to alternative 2
                                                       protection for                          and 3. A portion
                                                       cutthroat trout                         of upper tier
                                                       compared to                             acres are within
                                                       alternatives 1                          watersheds
                                                       and 3.                                  occupied by TES
                                                                                               fish, implying
                                                                                               potential
                                                                                               improvements in
                                                                                               protection
                                                                                               relative to
                                                                                               Alternative 2.
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Terrestrial Species and Habitat.  For all alternatives, potential adverse effects are expected to be avoided or
                                   minimized through compliance with standards and guidelines in land management
                                   plans and other applicable laws and policies. For all alternatives,
                                   activities may affect individual animals but are not likely to adversely
                                   affect populations or critical habitat of T&E species, nor result in the loss
                                   of viability or cause a trend toward Federal listing for sensitive species.
                                 -------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                  Least risk to       Increased risk to   Greatest risk to    Increased risk to
                                   terrestrial         terrestrial         terrestrial         terrestrial
                                   species and         species and         species and         species and
                                   habitat.            habitat due to      habitat due to      habitat, but less
                                   Limitations of      activity            activity            than Alternative
                                   tree-cutting to     projections.        projections.        2 due to activity
                                   small diameter                                              projections and
                                   trees helps                                                 acreage
                                   maintain larger                                             allocation to
                                   trees and                                                   upper tier.
                                   variability in
                                   forest structure.
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

[[Page 21283]]

 
                                                      Tree-cutting to     Opportunities to    Tree-cutting to
                                                       improve habitat     improve early       improve habitat
                                                       for threatened,     seral stage and     for TEPS species
                                                       endangered, and     lower elevation     prohibited on a
                                                       protected species   habitat is          greater number of
                                                       (TEPS) prohibited   highest as a        upper tier acres
                                                       in upper tier       result of           compared to
                                                       acres but fewer     increased           Alternative 2.
                                                       upper tier acres    flexibility to      Opportunities to
                                                       compared to         treat fuels.        improve early
                                                       Alternative 4.                          seral stage and
                                                      Opportunities to                         lower elevation
                                                       improve early                           habitat is lower
                                                       seral stage and                         than alternative
                                                       lower elevation                         2 but higher than
                                                       habitat is higher                       alternative 1
                                                       as a result of                          (due to treatment
                                                       improved capacity                       projections).
                                                       to treat fuels.
                                                       Restricting tree-
                                                       cutting inside
                                                       and outside of
                                                       CPZs to small
                                                       diameter trees
                                                       helps maintain
                                                       larger trees and
                                                       forest structure
                                                       (also applies to
                                                       Alternative 4).
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Biodiversity....................  The value of roadless areas in conserving biodiversity is likely to increase
                                   as habitat loss and habitat degradation increase in scope and magnitude in
                                   lands outside of roadless areas. Opportunities for protected large contiguous
                                   blocks of habitat, biological strongholds, and habitat connectivity would be
                                   greatest for the 2001 rule and lowest under the forest plans alternative.
                                   Increasing opportunities for treatments under Alternatives 4, 2, and 3
                                   respectively to address hazardous fuels and maintenance and restoration of
                                   ecosystem characteristics may have off-setting beneficial effects on long-
                                   term biodiversity.
                                 -------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Invasive Plants.................  Site-specific design criteria and mitigation measures are expected to minimize
                                   risk.
                                 -------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                  Lowest risk of      Some higher risk    Greatest risk of    Slightly higher
                                   spread due to low   of the spread due   the spread due to   risk of the
                                   projections of      to greater          the greatest        spread compared
                                   road construction   projections of      projections for     to Alternative 1
                                   or tree-cutting.    road construction   road construction   but less than
                                                       or tree-cutting.    or tree-cutting     alternatives 2
                                                       Acres removed may   compared to other   and 3 due to
                                                       experience          alternatives.       projected levels
                                                       increased rates                         of road
                                                       of spread while                         construction and
                                                       acres added may                         tree-cutting.
                                                       have decreased
                                                       rates (same
                                                       applies for
                                                       Alternative 4).
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Recreation--Primitive and Semi-   Tree-cutting activity is projected to occur on only a small percentage of
 primitive Recreation Settings     roadless areas over 15 years across the alternatives. Dispersed recreation
 and Opportunities.                opportunities (including hunting and fishing) are therefore not expected to
                                   change under any alternative, but feelings of remoteness and solitude may
                                   change for periods of time in areas where activity occurs.
                                 -------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                  Likely to retain    Likely to retain a  Greatest risk of    Same as
                                   the greatest        high proportion     shifts from         Alternative 2 but
                                   proportion of IRA   of CRA acreage in   primitive/semi-     more likely to
                                   acreage in a        a semi-primitive    primitive           retain high
                                   primitive or semi-  setting; although   settings to         proportion of
                                   primitive setting.  some CRA acres      roaded natural      primitive/semi-
                                  The substantially    would shift         settings in areas   primitive acres
                                   altered areas and   toward roaded       where the most      given slight
                                   developed ski       natural settings    roads and energy    reductions in
                                   areas in IRAs may   in areas where      operations are      construction and
                                   continue to         the most roads      projected to        tree-cutting
                                   appear              and energy          occur.              activity.
                                   inconsistent with   operations are
                                   semi-primitive      projected to
                                   characteristics     occur in CRAs.
                                   expected in
                                   roadless areas.
                                  The newly           By not including
                                   identified          substantially
                                   roadless acres      altered areas and
                                   (409,500 acres)     developed ski
                                   where road          areas in CRAs and
                                   construction and    adding unroaded
                                   tree-cutting,       areas to CRAs,
                                   sale or removal     the CRAs would
                                   is projected to     appear more
                                   occur that are      consistent with
                                   not within the      semi-primitive
                                   IRAs could shift    characteristics
                                   to less primitive   expected in
                                   settings.           roadless areas.
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Outfitters and Guides             Out of 1,390 recreational special use permits authorized on NFS lands in
 (recreation).                     Colorado, 1,066 are associated with outfitters and guides, some of which are
                                   likely to operate in roadless areas. The alternatives are expected to have
                                   negligible adverse effects on recreational special uses, including outfitter
                                   and guide opportunities, based on the magnitude and distribution of
                                   reasonably foreseeable activity projections; 7,000 acres of tree-cutting and
                                   20 miles of road construction per year are projected over more than 4 million
                                   CRA acres under the proposed rule. Limitations on road construction and tree-
                                   cutting under any alternative would not be likely to affect ability to obtain
                                   or use a recreation use authorization.
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Cultural Resources..............  Least risk of       Slightly higher     Highest risk of     Same or less than
                                   damage to           risk of damage to   damage to           alternative 2 due
                                   cultural            cultural            cultural            to larger number
                                   resources because   resources because   resources because   of acres in the
                                   this alternative    this alternative    this alternative    upper tier.
                                   has the least       has a high          has the highest
                                   projections for     projection of       projection of
                                   tree-cutting,       tree-cutting,       tree-cutting,
                                   sale, or removal.   sale, or removal    sale, or removal
                                                       and road            and road
                                                       construction.       construction.
                                  Site-specific       Site-specific       Site-specific       Site-specific
                                   design criteria     design criteria     design criteria     design criteria
                                   and mitigation      and mitigation      and mitigation      and mitigation
                                   measures are        measures are        measures are        measures are
                                   expected to         expected to         expected to         expected to
                                   minimize risk.      minimize risk.      minimize risk.      minimize risk.
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

[[Page 21284]]

 
Native Plants, Including Special  No major difference among alternatives related to the risk of adverse effects
 Status Plants.                    on native threatened, endangered, or sensitive plant species. There would be
                                   very little to no increases in roads, tree-cutting, or energy development
                                   activities in the roadless areas that support those plant species. The main
                                   difference is the higher risk under the proposed rule and the forest plans
                                   alternative that invasive plants would increase from the higher levels of
                                   ground-disturbance, thereby increasing this threat to native plant
                                   communities.
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Geological and Paleontological    None of the projected activities in roadless areas that vary by alternative
 Resources.                        would be likely to adversely affect geological or paleontological resources,
                                   which would either be avoided or otherwise protected from potential adverse
                                   impacts.
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Climate Change..................  None of the alternatives are expected to cause a measurable change in the
                                   amount of carbon dioxide or other greenhouse gas emissions. With regard to
                                   energy resources, it is assumed that if production is not allowed in roadless
                                   areas, the same greenhouse impacts will be moved to sites outside roadless
                                   areas and contribute the same amount to the atmosphere. In terms of fuels
                                   treatments, biomass removed can be burned, used in products, replace fossil
                                   fuels, or be left in piles elsewhere on the landscape. Except for prescribed
                                   burning, any of these disposal methods would slow release of carbon to the
                                   atmosphere.
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                  Agency Costs
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Vegetation and Fuel Treatments..  Treatments are      Increased           Capacity to shift   Management
                                   likely to be less   flexibility to      even more           flexibility is
                                   efficient and       achieve             treatment acres     similar to
                                   more costly in      management          into IRAs;          Alternative 2,
                                   IRAs.               objectives in       increased           but projected
                                                       critical insect     efficiency,         treatment amounts
                                                       and disease         effectiveness and   are lower due to
                                                       areas; increase     timeliness of       constraints
                                                       ability to          wildfire            imposed by more
                                                       strategically       suppression         upper tier
                                                       locate treatments   response as well    acreage under
                                                       and improve         as fuel             Alternative 4.
                                                       efficiency.         reductions in
                                                                           CPZs.
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Other Costs.....................  Administrative costs are unlikely to change due to flat or static budgets and
                                   corresponding constraints on projects. Emphasis on road decommissioning and
                                   temporary roads is expected to ease demands on maintenance backlog. Overall
                                   need to address invasive plants is expected to remain relatively constant
                                   across alternatives; although new roads can contribute to the spread of
                                   invasive plants, roads can also be an asset in helping to effectively control
                                   invasive populations.
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


      Table 3--Summary of Distributional Effects and Economic Impacts of the Proposed Rule and Alternatives
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                                                                 Alternative 4
                                  Alternative 1 2001     Alternative 2     Alternative 3 (No  Proposed Rule with
                                    Roadless Rule        Proposed Rule      Action) Forest     Public Identified
                                                                                 Plans         Upper Tier Acres
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Leaseable Minerals: Coal, Oil    $636 million/yr      $969 million/yr     $1,026 million/yr   $969 million/yr
 and Gas--Output Value, Jobs      Output.              Output.             Output.             Output.
 and Income (2006$) Contributed  1,557 Jobs           2,679 Jobs          2,796 Jobs          2,679 Jobs
 (1).                             supported.           supported.          supported.          supported.
                                 $101.4 million per   $183.2 million per  $190 million per    $183.2 million per
                                  year Labor Income.   year Labor          year Labor          year Labor
                                                       Income.             Income.             Income.
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Revenue Sharing: Mineral Lease   State Total: $28.4   State Total: $47.3  State Total: $49.7  State Total: $47.3
 Payments and Tax Revenues        million.             million.            million.            million.
 (2007$) (2).                    Energy-Affected      Energy-Affected     Energy-Affected     Energy-Affected
                                  Counties: $7.3       Counties: $10.2     Counties:           Counties: $10.2
                                  million.             million.           $11.1 million.       million.
                                 All other CO         All other CO        All other CO        All other CO
                                  Counties: $1.1       Counties: $1.9      Counties: $2.0      Counties: $1.9
                                  million.             million.            million.            million.
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Values at risk: Number of        Decrease: 13         Decrease: 2         NA.                 Decrease: 18
 Counties Where Potential for     counties.            county.                                 counties.
 Fuel Treatments in CPZs May     Increase: 1 county.  Increase: 3                             Increase: 5
 Increase or Decrease Compared                         counties.                               counties.
 to Baseline Conditions (3).
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
(1) Jobs and income contributed annually (2006 dollars) based on projected levels of coal, oil, and gas
  production and regional economic modeling multipliers derived from an IMPLAN model representing the five
  counties where employment effects are assumed to occur (Delta, Garfield, Mesa, Montrose, and Rio Blanco).
(2) Payments consist of property tax receipts from coal, oil, and gas production; State distribution of
  severance taxes and Federal royalties. Energy-affected counties are Delta, Garfield, Gunnison, Mesa, Montrose,
  and Pitkin counties. Changes in payments associated with the Secure Rural Schools and Self Determination Act
  and Payments in Lieu of Taxes (PILT) are not expected to change significantly.
(3) CPZs = community protection zones (0.5 to 1.5 mile buffer area surrounding communities that have been
  identified as being at-risk to wildfire. ``Potential for fuel treatments'' implies that at least one CPZ area
  in a county overlaps with an IRA or CRA where tree-cutting has at least a low likelihood of occurring,
  according to national forest unit field staff.

Proper Consideration of Small Entities

    The proposed rule has also been considered in light of Executive 
Order 13272 (E. O. 13272) regarding proper consideration of small 
entities and the Small Business Regulatory Enforcement Fairness Act of 
1996 (SBREFA), which amended the Regulatory Flexibility Act (5 U.S.C. 
601 et seq.). The Forest Service with the assistance of the State of 
Colorado has determined that this action will not have a significant 
economic impact on a substantial number of small entities as defined by 
the E.O. 13272 and SBREFA, because the proposed rule does not directly 
impose small entities to regulatory requirements. The effects on small 
businesses will not be substantial. Therefore, an initial regulatory 
flexibility analysis is not required for this proposed rule.
    For small businesses affiliated with most industry sectors involved 
with activities in roadless areas (e.g., coal, oil and gas), there are 
minimal differences between the proposed rule and baseline or no-action 
conditions (i.e., forest plans alternative). As a result, there is 
little or no potential for significant adverse economic impacts to 
small businesses under the proposed rule relative to forest plans.
    There are about 1,390 recreation special use permits currently 
authorized within NFS lands in Colorado of which a large majority are 
small businesses, and 1,066 (77%) are associated with outfitter and 
guide permits, some of

[[Page 21285]]

which are likely to operate within roadless areas. However, there is 
little difference between alternatives with respect to recreation 
special use authorizations in roadless areas, because limitations on 
roading and tree-cutting under any alternative would not be likely to 
affect ability to obtain or use recreation use authorizations. Impacts 
under the proposed rule compared to forest plans are not expected to be 
significant due to the small percentage of acreage affected (7,000 
acres of tree-cutting per year) and roads constructed (20 miles per 
year) spread across more than 4 million acres of Colorado Roadless 
Areas. It is also noted that a significant percentage of roads and 
tree-cutting activity will occur within or near the community 
protection zones where primitive or semi-primitive settings may already 
be affected. Flat budgets imply that the percentage of harvest from 
roadless areas may change under the alternatives, but aggregate volumes 
across all NFS land are expected to remain relatively unchanged, on 
average, implying little potential for adverse impacts to small 
entities.
    For leasable minerals associated energy resources (coal, oil and 
gas), significant changes in output are projected across alternatives. 
More than 95 percent of the firms associated with these sectors can be 
classified as small as defined by Small Business Administration 
standards. Any changes in oil and gas, or coal development or 
production can therefore have an effect on small business opportunities 
in these sectors. A five county region has been defined to model the 
economic impacts associated with energy resources (Delta, Garfield, 
Mesa, Montrose, and Rio Blanco counties). A total of 355 firms 
associated with oil and gas, and coal development and extraction are 
estimated to be located within this region, of which 95% are likely to 
be small (337 firms). However, energy resource sector jobs, supported 
annually by projected activity within roadless areas, are estimated to 
increase from 1,557 under the 2001 rule alternative to 2,679 jobs under 
the proposed rule (as well as alternative 4), and 2,796 jobs under the 
no action (forest plans) alternative. Labor income increases by a 
similar degree from $101 million to $183.2 million and 190 million per 
year under all alternatives. There is slightly higher job numbers 
(2,796) under the forest plan alternative (alternative 3) relative to 
the proposed rule (2,679) alternatives (alternatives 2 and 4), but the 
magnitude of the difference between these alternatives does not suggest 
that adverse impacts will be significant if choosing between the 
proposed rule and forest plans. These results indicate minimal adverse 
impacts to small entities associated with energy resource development 
and extraction under the proposed rule relative to the forest plans 
alternative.
    For all other economic sectors considered, changes in resource 
outputs are not projected to be significant to the extent that adverse 
impacts to small entities could occur in aggregate or within regions.
    Among 64 counties in the State of Colorado, 36 counties (56%) are 
considered to be small governments (population less than 50,000). These 
36 counties are considered to be small rural counties having NFS lands 
within IRAs/CRAs. Six counties are energy (coal, oil and gas) producing 
counties. These six counties (Delta, Garfield, Gunnison, Mesa, 
Montrose, and Pitkin) are expected to be the counties most likely to 
benefit from mineral lease payments and revenue sharing under the 
proposed rule (as well as alternative 4), and forest plans. All of 
these counties, with the exception of Mesa can be considered small 
governments (population less than 50,000), and all are forecast to 
receive significant increases in property tax receipts from coal, and 
oil and gas production, as well as State distributions of severance 
taxes and Federal royalties under the proposed rule and forest plans 
relative to the 2001 rule. There are slight increases in payments under 
forest plans, relative to the proposed rule (aggregate payments 
increase from $10.2 million to $11.1 million per year). Payments 
associated with the Secure Rural Schools and Self Determination Act 
(SRSA) and Payments in Lieu of Taxes (PILT) are not expected to change 
significantly, or any decreases would be largely offset by increases in 
Federal mineral lease payments.
    Under the proposed rule, as compared to the no action alternative, 
the potential opportunities for fuel treatments near communities-at-
risk (i.e., within community protection zones (CPZs)) may increase for 
two 'small population' counties (i.e., populations less than 50,000). 
In contrast, potential opportunities for fuel treatments near 
communities-at-risk may decrease for nine and eight 'small population' 
counties under Alternative 1 (2001 rule) and Alternative 4 (proposed 
rule with additional upper tier acreage) respectively, compared to the 
no action alternative. These results indicate that adverse impacts to 
small governments, in association with protection of values at risk 
from wildfire, are not likely, when comparing the proposed rule with no 
action.
    Therefore, for small governments, including counties with small 
populations and at-risk-communities from wildfire within those 
counties, opportunities for revenue sharing, as well as protection of 
values-at-risk are not expected to significantly decrease under the 
proposed rule relative to forest plans. Mitigation measures associated 
with existing programs and laws regarding revenue sharing with counties 
and small business shares or set-asides will continue to apply.

Controlling Paperwork Burdens on the Public

    This proposed rule does not call for any additional record keeping 
or reporting requirements or other information collection requirements 
as defined in 5 CFR part 1320 that are not already required by law or 
not already approved for use and, therefore, imposes no additional 
paperwork burden on the public. Accordingly, the review provisions of 
the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (44 U.S.C. 3501 et seq.) and its 
implementing regulations at 5 CFR part 1320 do not apply.

Federalism

    The Department has considered this proposed rule under the 
requirements of Executive Order 13132 issued August 4, 1999 (E.O. 
13132), Federalism. The Department has made an assessment that the 
proposed rule conforms with the Federalism principles set out in E.O. 
13132; would not impose any compliance costs on the States; and would 
not have substantial direct effects on the States, on the relationship 
between the national government and the States, nor on the distribution 
of power and responsibilities among the various levels of government. 
Therefore, the Department concludes that this proposed rule does not 
have Federalism implications. This proposed rule is based on a petition 
submitted by the State of Colorado under the Administrative Procedure 
Act at 5 U.S.C. 553(e) and pursuant to Department of Agriculture 
regulations at 7 CFR 1.28. The State's petition was developed through a 
task force with the involvement of local governments. The State is a 
cooperating agency pursuant to 40 CFR 1501.6 of the Council on 
Environmental Quality regulations for the development of the supporting 
environmental impact statement. State and local governments are 
encouraged to comment on this proposed rule, in the course of this 
rulemaking process.

[[Page 21286]]

Consultation With Indian Tribal Governments

    The United States has a unique relationship with Indian Tribes as 
provided in the Constitution of the United States, treaties, and 
Federal statutes. The relationship extends to the Federal government's 
management of public lands and the Forest Service strives to assure 
that its consultation with Native American Tribes is meaningful, in 
good faith, and entered into on a government-to-government basis.
    On November 5, 2009, President Obama signed a Memorandum 
emphasizing his commitment to ``regular and meaningful consultation and 
collaboration with Tribal officials in policy decisions that have 
Tribal implications including, as an initial step, through complete and 
consistent implementation of Executive Order 13175.'' He charged 
agencies with engaging in consultation and collaboration with Indian 
Tribal governments; strengthening government-to-government relationship 
between the United States and Indian Tribes; and reducing the 
imposition of unfunded mandates upon Indian Tribes.
    Management of roadless areas has been a topic of interest and 
importance to Tribal governments. During promulgation of the 2001 
Roadless Rule, Forest Service line officers in the field were asked to 
make contact with Tribes to ensure awareness of the initiative and of 
the rulemaking process. Outreach to Tribes was conducted at the 
national forest and grassland level, which is how Forest Service 
government-to-government dialog with Tribes is typically conducted. 
Tribal representatives remained engaged concerning these issues during 
the subsequent litigation and rulemaking efforts.
    The State's petition identifies that a vital part of its public 
process in developing its petition were the recommendations and 
comments received from Native American Tribes. The Governor's office 
was keenly aware of the spiritual and cultural significance some of 
these areas hold for the Tribes.
    There are two resident Tribes in Colorado, both retaining some of 
their traditional land base as reservations via a series of treaties, 
agreements, and laws. The Ute Mountain Ute and Southern Ute Tribes 
(consisting originally of the Weeminuche, Capote, Tabeguache, and 
Mouaches Bands)--each a ``domestic sovereign'' nation--have reserved 
some specific off-reservation hunting rights in Colorado and retain 
inherent aboriginal rights throughout their traditional territory. Many 
other Tribes located outside Colorado maintain Tribal interests, 
including aboriginal and ceded territories, and retain inherent 
aboriginal rights within the State.
    The Forest Service has been consulting with Colorado-affiliated 
Tribes regarding this proposed rulemaking action and analysis process. 
Tribal concerns surfaced during phone or e-mail consultations. 
Information applying to the proposed Colorado Roadless Rule was 
provided to the Ute Mountain Ute and Southern Ute Indian Tribes, 
located in Colorado prior to the release of the NOI. The San Juan 
National Forest staff held meetings with both Tribes to discuss the 
proposed rule as well as other Forest issues. At these meetings, the 
Tribes expressed concerns about hunting access, and unauthorized roads. 
Nothing in this rule changes access or existing rights. The management 
of unauthorized roads is addressed through travel management processes.
    Additionally, an introductory letter and the NOI along with 
background information on the proposed Colorado Roadless Rule and an 
offer for additional information or meetings was sent to the following 
Tribes and committees: Hopi Tribal Council, Navajo Nation, Northern 
Cheyenne Tribal Council, Pueblo of Jemez, Pueblo of Namb[eacute], Ohkay 
Owingeh, Pueblo of Picuris, Pueblo of Pojoaque, Pueblo of San 
Ildefonso, Pueblo of Santa Clara, Pueblo of Taos, Pueblo of Tesuque, 
Pueblo of Zuni, Jicarilla Apache Nation, Cheyenne and Arapaho Tribes of 
Oklahoma, Ute Business Committee, Shoshone Business Committee, and the 
Arapaho Business Committee. These 18 Tribes and committees were 
selected based on their current proximity to Colorado, their current 
use of lands in Colorado, and their historic use of lands within 
Colorado.
    The 2008 Proposed Rule and DEIS were sent to each Tribe and each 
was contacted by phone to determine interest in meeting or obtaining 
information. The Tribes did not request additional government-to-
government involvement, and no formal comments from any of the Tribes 
were received. A letter was sent outlining the key points of this 
revised proposed rule and the FS met with those Tribes requesting 
further consultation. Consultation efforts will continue throughout the 
process and for the final Rule.
    Pursuant to Executive Order 13175 of November 6, 2000, 
``Consultation and Coordination with Indian Tribal Governments,'' the 
Department has assessed the impact of this proposed rule on Indian 
Tribal Governments and has determined that the proposed rule does not 
significantly or uniquely affect Indian Tribal Government communities. 
The proposed rule would establish direction governing the management 
and protection of Colorado Roadless Areas, however, the proposed rule 
respects prior existing rights, and it addresses discretionary Forest 
Service management decisions involving road construction, timber 
harvest, and some mineral activities. The Department has also 
determined that this proposed rule does not impose substantial direct 
compliance costs on Indian Tribal Governments. This proposed rule does 
not mandate Tribal participation in roadless management of the planning 
of activities in Colorado Roadless Areas. Rather, the Forest Service 
officials are obligated by other agency policies to consult early with 
Tribal governments and to work cooperatively with them where planning 
issues affect Tribal interests.

No Takings Implications

    The proposed rule has been analyzed in accordance with the 
principles and criteria contained in Executive Order 12630 issued March 
15, 1988. It has been determined that the proposed rule does not pose 
the risk of a taking of private property.

Civil Justice Reform

    The proposed rule has been reviewed under Executive Order 12988, 
Civil Justice Reform. After adoption of this proposed rule, (1) all 
State and local laws and regulations that conflict with this proposed 
rule or that would impede full implementation of this proposed rule 
will be preempted; (2) no retroactive effect would be given to this 
proposed rule; and (3) this proposed rule would not require the use of 
administrative proceedings before parties could file suit in court 
challenging its provisions.

Unfunded Mandates

    Pursuant to Title II of the Unfunded Mandates Reform Act of 1995 (2 
U.S.C. 1531-1538), the Department has assessed the effects of this 
proposed rule on State, local, and Tribal governments and the private 
sector. This proposed rule does not compel the expenditure of $100 
million or more by State, local, or Tribal governments or anyone in the 
private sector. Therefore, a statement under section 202 of the Act is 
not required.

Energy Effects

    Based on guidance for implementing Executive Order 13211 (E.O. 
13211) of

[[Page 21287]]

May 18, 2001, Actions Concerning Regulations That Significantly Affect 
Energy Supply, Distribution or Use, issued by Office of Management and 
Budget (Memorandum for Heads of Executive Departments and Agencies, and 
Independent Regulatory Agencies (M-01-27), July 13, 2001), this 
proposed rule constitutes a ``significant energy action'' as defined in 
E.O. 13211 because projected reductions in coal production under the 
proposed rule are in excess of 5 million tons per year after 2024.
    Projections of natural gas production are discussed in the RDEIS 
and the Regulatory Impact Analysis for the proposed Colorado Roadless 
Rule. Based on those projections, it has been determined that natural 
gas production varies across alternatives for only two National Forests 
(the Grand Mesa, Gunnison, and Uncompahgre (GMUG) and White River 
National Forests). It has also been determined that there is no 
appreciable difference in projected natural gas production between 
Alternatives 1 (2001 rule) and 2 (proposed rule) or alternative 4. The 
difference in potential natural gas production between alternatives 1, 
2, or 4 (27 billion cubic feet per year) and alternative 3 (no action) 
(31 billion cubic feet per year) is a decrease of only 4 bcf/year, or 4 
million mcf/year, which is well below the E. O. 13211 criterion for 
adverse effects of 25 million mcf.
    Projected oil production ranges from approximately 50,000 barrels 
under Alternatives 1, 2, and 4 to approximately 110,000 barrels under 
Alternative 3 over a period of 15 to 30 years. The corresponding 
reduction in oil production per day under alternatives 1 or 2 or 
alternative 3 (no action) is inconsequential compared to the E. O. 
13211 criterion of 10,000 barrels per day.
    Based on average annual coal production rates estimated for 
economic impact analysis purposes, annual aggregate production across 
the three mines operating in the affected area is projected to be the 
same under the proposed rule and the no action alternative (i.e., 
forest plans alternative) for the first 24 years after implementation 
(2011 to 2034). Coal production and production schedules are also 
projected to be the same for the proposed rule and alternative 4. It is 
only after 24 years (2035) that annual coal production is projected to 
decrease under the proposed rule compared to the no action alternative 
by an amount of 5.6 million tons per year which is the average annual 
production from the Elk Creek mine which ends after 2034. This 
estimated decrease is based on the known extent of coal resources and 
the exclusion of the Currant Creek area from the North Fork coal mining 
area. A decrease of 5.6 million tons is only slightly above the E. O. 
13211 criterion of 5 million tons per year for significant adverse 
effects. Production is estimated to decrease by 6.0 million tons per 
year under the proposed rule compared to no action by 2058 when 
production ceases for all mines under the proposed rule. Coal 
production is projected to continue for an additional 22 years (until 
2079) under the no action alternative.
    The total reduction in recoverable coal reserves from roadless 
areas that are made accessible under the proposed rule, relative to no 
action alternative, is estimated to be 210 million tons (i.e., 724-514 
= 210 million ton reduction). In comparison, the recoverable coal 
reserves \1\ reported for the State of Colorado by the U.S. Energy 
Information Administration ranges from 629 million tons in 2002 to 328 
million tons by 2007,\2\ recognizing that direct comparisons of 
accessible coal reserves under the alternatives with recoverable 
reserves estimated by USEIA are difficult due to differences in 
estimation procedures. However, the reduction of 210 million tons made 
accessible under the proposed rule is only 2% of the total estimated 
recoverable reserves \3\ for the State of Colorado in 2007 (9,692 
million tons) and less than 0.1% of total estimated recoverable 
reserves for the nation in 2007 (262,689 million tons).
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \1\ ``Recoverable Coal Reserves'' consist of the quantity of 
coal that can be recovered (i.e., mined) from existing coal reserves 
at reporting mines. Source: U.S. Energy Information Administration 
(EIA), Independent Statistics and Analysis (Table 14--Recoverable 
Coal Reserves and Average Recovery Percentage at Producing Mines by 
State, 2000--2007) http://www.eia.doe.gov/cneaf/coal/reserves/reserves.html.
    \2\ ``2008 Coal Production and Employment for Colorado'' 
Colorado Mining Association, Denver CO. http://www.coloradomining.com.
    \3\ ``Estimated recoverable reserves'' consist of coal in the 
demonstrated reserve base considered recoverable after excluding 
coal estimated to be unavailable due to land use restrictions or 
currently economically unattractive for mining. Source: U.S. Energy 
Information Administration (EIA), Independent Statistics and 
Analysis (Table 15--Recoverable Coal Reserves at Producing Mines, 
Estimated Recoverable Reserves, and Demonstrated Reserve Base by 
Mining Method, 2000-2007) http://www.eia.doe.gov/cneaf/coal/reserves/reserves.html.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    The estimated reductions in the production life of affected mines 
under the proposed rule compared to the no action alternative may be 
significant, particularly when considering potential increases in 
demand for coal from western mines \4\ and the Nation as a whole.\5\ 
However, both the proposed rule and the no action alternatives are 
projected to sustain similar production rates over an extended period 
of 24 years after implementation of the rule, and there are many other 
factors that are likely to have a more significant effect on energy 
markets after that time, compared to the effect of reduced production 
under the proposed rule which begins 25 years after implementation of 
this rule would occur (i.e., 2034). It is also noted that approximately 
67% of all coal produced from Colorado in 2008 (32.7 million tons) was 
exported to other States, suggesting that regional markets and prices 
are likely to be heavily influenced by national prices, supplies, and 
market trends.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \4\ In 2007, the Energy Information Administration called for a 
5% per year increase in coal production from western mines, but 
revised this statement in 2009, suggesting a slower rate of 
increase.
    \5\ Demand for coal is anticipated to increase as a consequence 
of 153 new coal-fired electricity plants to be built by 2025, many 
of which will be in States such as FL, TX, IL, KY that import 
Colorado coal. (``Colorado Mineral and Energy Industry Activities, 
2006'', Colorado Geological Survey, Department of Natural Resources, 
Denver CO.)
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    The reduction in coal production under the proposed rule (as well 
as alternative 4), relative to the no action alternative are not 
expected to have adverse effects on the productivity, competition, or 
prices in the energy sector regionally (or nationally) due to the 
following observations:

--Potential reductions in coal production under the proposed rule, 
relative to no action are not projected to occur until 24 years in the 
future (2035) and estimated reductions after year 24 (i.e., 5.6 million 
tons/yr) exceed the criterion of 5.0 million tons per year by only a 
small fraction. A second decrease in production of similar magnitude 
(6.0 million tons per year) is projected to occur farther in the future 
(2059) when all mines cease operation under the proposed rule.
--The reduction in total accessible coal reserves under the proposed 
rule relative to the no action alternative amounts to a relatively 
small percentage of total estimated recoverable reserves in the State 
of Colorado (2%) and the nation (< 0.1%), and
--The reductions in reserves and production rates under the proposed 
rule compared to no action are estimated to occur well into the future 
(e.g., 24 and 48 yrs), and the relative impact of these reductions is 
expected to be insignificant compared to the impact of other factors 
that could affect regional and national energy markets by that time.

    The reductions in annual production under the 2001 rule, compared 
to the no

[[Page 21288]]

action (reductions range from 5.6 million tons per year beginning as 
early as 2013 and increase to 11.6 million tons by 2019) are somewhat 
greater than the reductions noted for the proposed rule (and 
Alternative 4), and production life is anticipated to extend for only 7 
to 10 years under the 2001 rule compared to a longer production life 
under the no action alternative.
    There is a substantial reduction in annual production under the 
2001 rule alternative compared to the no action alternative (reductions 
range from 5.6 million tons per year beginning as early as 2013 and 
increase to 11.6 million tons by 2019), and production life is 
anticipated to extend for only 7 to 10 years under the 2001 rule 
compared to a longer production life under the no action alternative. 
The production reductions under the 2001 rule (i.e., 11.6 million tons/
yr beginning around 2019) exceed the criterion of 5 million tons per 
year for adverse effects (but reductions are still relatively small), 
and decreases in operating life of the mines as well as total reserves 
may suggest the potential for adverse effects to regional markets. The 
impacts of a number of other factors affecting energy markets and 
national market trends are still expected to outweigh the effects of 
implementing the 2001 rule alternative.
    Alternative 1 has the greatest reduction in production, and 
alternatives 2 and 4 have some reduction compared to forest plans.
    No novel legal or policy issues regarding adverse effects to 
supply, distribution or use of energy are anticipated beyond what has 
already been addressed in the RDEIS, or the Regulatory Impact Analysis 
(RIA). None of the proposed corridors designated for oil, gas, and/or 
electricity under Section 368 of the Energy Policy Act of 2005 are 
within Colorado Roadless Areas.
    The proposed rule does not disturb existing access or mineral 
rights, and restrictions on saleable mineral materials are narrow. The 
proposed rule also provides regulatory mechanism for consideration of 
requests for modification of restrictions if adjustments are determined 
to be necessary in the future. As this action is a significant energy 
action, the above constitutes the Statement of Energy Effects.

List of Subjects in 36 CFR Part 294

    National Forests, Recreation areas, Navigation (air), State 
petitions for inventoried roadless area management.

    Therefore, for the reasons set forth in the preamble, the Forest 
Service proposes to amend part 294 of Title 36 of the Code of Federal 
Regulations by adding new subpart D to read as follows:

PART 294--SPECIAL AREAS

Subpart D--Colorado Roadless Area Management

Sec.
294.40 Purpose.
294.41 Definitions.
294.42 Prohibitions on tree-cutting, sale, or removal.
294.43 Prohibition on road construction and reconstruction.
294.44 Prohibition on linear construction zones.
294.45 Environmental documentation.
294.46 Other activities.
294.47 Modifications and administrative corrections.
294.48 Scope and applicability.
294.49 List of designated Colorado Roadless Areas.

Subpart D--Colorado Roadless Area Management

    Authority: 16 U.S.C. 472, 529, 551, 1608, 1613; 23 U.S.C. 201, 
205.


Sec.  294.40  Purpose.

    The purpose of this subpart is to provide, within the context of 
multiple use management, State-specific direction for the protection of 
roadless areas on National Forest System lands in Colorado. The intent 
of this regulation is to protect roadless values by restricting tree 
cutting, sale, and removal, road construction and reconstruction, and 
linear construction zones within CRAs, with narrowly focused 
exceptions. Activities must be designed to conserve the roadless area 
characteristics listed in Sec.  294 .41, although applying the 
exceptions in Sec.  294.42, Sec.  294.43, and Sec.  294.44 may have 
effects to some roadless area characteristics.


Sec.  294.41  Definitions.

    The following terms and definitions apply to this subpart.
    At-risk community: As defined under section 101 of the Healthy 
Forest Restoration Act (Pub. L. 108-148).
    Catchment: A watershed delineation beginning at the downstream 
point of occupation of native cutthroat trout and encompassing the 
upstream boundary of waters draining in the stream system.
    Colorado Roadless Area Upper Tier Acres: A subset of Colorado 
Roadless Areas identified in a set of maps maintained at the national 
headquarters office of the Forest Service where not all exceptions for 
tree-cutting, sale, or removal and road construction/reconstruction 
would apply in order to provide a higher level of protection.
    Colorado Roadless Areas: Areas designated pursuant to this subpart 
and identified in a set of maps maintained at the national headquarters 
office of the Forest Service. Colorado Roadless Areas established by 
this subpart shall constitute the exclusive set of National Forest 
System lands within the State of Colorado to which the provisions 36 
CFR 220.5(a)(2) shall apply.
    Community Protection Zone: An area extending one-half mile from the 
boundary of an at-risk community; or an area within one and a half 
miles from the boundary of an at-risk community, where any land:
    (1) Has a sustained steep slope that creates the potential for 
wildfire behavior endangering the at-risk community;
    (2) Has a geographic feature that aids in creating an effective 
fire break, such as a road or a ridge top; or
    (3) Is in condition class 3 as defined by Healthy Forest 
Restoration Act (Pub. L. 108-148).
    Community Wildfire Protection Plan: As defined under section 101 of 
the Healthy Forest Restoration Act (Pub. L. 108-148), and used in this 
subpart, the term ``community wildfire protection plan'' means a plan 
for an at-risk community that:
    (1) Is developed within the context of the collaborative agreements 
and the guidance established by the Wildland Fire Leadership Council 
and agreed to by the applicable local government, local fire 
department, and State agency responsible for forest management, in 
consultation with interested parties and the Federal land management 
agencies managing land in the vicinity of the at-risk community;
    (2) Identifies and prioritizes areas for hazardous fuel reduction 
treatments and recommends the types and methods of treatment on Federal 
and non-Federal land that will protect one or more at-risk communities 
and essential infrastructure; and
    (3) Recommends measures to reduce structural ignitability 
throughout the at-risk community.
    Condition Class 3: As defined under section 101 of the Healthy 
Forests Restoration Act (Pub. L. 108-148) the term ``condition class 
3'' means an area of Federal land, under which:
    (1) Fire regimes on land have been significantly altered from 
historical ranges;
    (2) There exists a high risk of losing key ecosystem components 
from fire;
    (3) Fire frequencies have departed from historical frequencies by 
multiple return intervals, resulting in dramatic changes to:

[[Page 21289]]

    (i) The size, frequency, intensity, or severity of fires; or
    (ii) Landscape patterns; and
    (4) Vegetation attributes have been significantly altered from the 
historical range of the attributes.
    Fire Hazard: A fuel complex defined by volume, type, condition, 
arrangement and location that determines the ease of ignition and the 
resistance to control; expresses the potential fire behavior for a fuel 
type, regardless of the fuel type's weather influenced fuel moisture 
condition.
    Fire Occurrence: One fire event occurring in a specific place 
within a specific period of time; a general term describing past or 
current wildland fire events.
    Fire Risk: The probability or chance that a fire might start, as 
affected by the presence and activities of causative agents.
    Forest road: As defined at 36 CFR 212.1, the term means a road 
wholly or partly within or adjacent to and serving the National Forest 
System that the Forest Service determines is necessary for the 
protection, administration, and utilization of the National Forest 
System and the use and development of its resources.
    Hazardous Fuels: Excessive live or dead wildland fuel accumulations 
that increase the potential for intense wildland fire and decrease the 
capability to protect life, property and natural resources.
    Linear Construction Zone: A temporary linear area of surface 
disturbance over 50 inches wide that is used for motorized transport by 
vehicles or construction equipment to install a linear facility. It is 
not used as a motor vehicle route and is not engineered to road 
specifications.
    Linear Facility: Linear facilities include pipelines, electrical 
power lines, telecommunications lines, ditches and canals.
    Municipal Water Supply System: As defined under Section 101 of the 
Healthy Forests Restoration Act (Pub. L. 108-148), and used in this 
subpart, the term means the reservoirs, canals, ditches, flumes, 
laterals, pipes, pipelines, and other surface facilities and systems 
constructed or installed for the collection, impoundment, storage, 
transportation, or distribution of drinking water.
    Native Cutthroat Trout: Collectively, all the native subspecies of 
cutthroat trout historically occurring in Colorado before European 
settlement which includes yellowfin, Rio Grande, Greenback, and 
Colorado River Trout.
    Pre-existing Water Court Decree: A decree issued by the Colorado 
Water Courts prior to [final rule effective date] adjudicating as the 
point of a diversion or the place of use, a location within a Colorado 
Roadless Area. A pre-existing decree does not include decrees 
adjudicated prior to [final rule effective date] which right includes a 
point of diversion or place of use outside of a Colorado Roadless Area, 
the holder of which proposes to change or move the point of diversion 
or place of use within a Colorado Roadless Area. Nothing in this 
subpart shall be construed as affecting the jurisdiction or 
responsibilities of the Forest Service.
    Responsible Official: The Forest Service line officer with the 
authority and responsibility to make decisions about protection and 
management of Colorado Roadless Areas pursuant to this subpart.
    Road: As defined at 36 CFR 212.1, the term means a motor vehicle 
route over 50 inches wide, unless identified and managed as a trail.
    Roadless Area Characteristics: Resources or features that are often 
present in and characterize Colorado Roadless Areas, including:
    (1) High quality or undisturbed soil, water, and air;
    (2) Sources of public drinking water;
    (3) Diversity of plant and animal communities;
    (4) Habitat for threatened, endangered, proposed, candidate, and 
sensitive species, and for those species dependent on large, 
undisturbed areas of land;
    (5) Primitive, semi-primitive non-motorized, and semi-primitive 
motorized classes of dispersed recreation;
    (6) Reference landscapes;
    (7) Naturaly-appearing landscapes with high scenic quality;
    (8) Traditional cultural properties and sacred sites; and
    (9) Other locally identified unique characteristics.
    Temporary Road: As defined at 36 CFR 212.1, the term means a road 
necessary for emergency operations or authorized by contract, permit, 
lease, or other written authorization that is not a forest road and 
that is not included in a forest transportation atlas.
    Water Conveyance Structures: Facilities associated with the 
transmission, storage, impoundment, and diversion of water on and 
across National Forest System lands. Water conveyance structures 
include, but are not limited to: reservoirs and dams, diversion 
structures, headgates, pipelines, ditches, canals, and tunnels.
    Water Influence Zone: The land next to water bodies where 
vegetation plays a major role in sustaining long-term integrity of 
aquatic systems. It includes the geomorphic floodplain (valley bottom), 
riparian ecosystem, and inner gorge. Its minimum horizontal width (from 
top of each bank) is 100 feet or the mean height of mature dominant 
late-seral vegetation, whichever is greater.


Sec.  294.42  Prohibition on tree-cutting, sale, or removal.

    (a) General. Trees may not be cut, sold, or removed in Colorado 
Roadless Areas, except as provided in paragraph (b) and (c) of this 
section.
    (b) Upper Tier Acres. Notwithstanding the prohibition in paragraph 
(a) of this section, trees may be cut, sold, or removed in Colorado 
Roadless Areas upper tier acres if the Responsible Official determines 
the activity is consistent with the applicable land management plan, 
and:
    (1) Tree-cutting, sale, or removal is incidental to the 
implementation of a management activity not otherwise prohibited by 
this subpart; or
    (2) Tree-cutting, sale, or removal is needed and appropriate for 
personal or administrative use, as provided for in 36 CFR part 223, 
subpart A.
    (c) Non-Upper Tier Acres. Notwithstanding the prohibition in 
paragraph (a) of this section, trees may be cut, sold, or removed in 
Colorado Roadless Areas outside upper tier acres if the Responsible 
Official, unless otherwise noted, determines the activity is consistent 
with the applicable land management plan, one or more of the roadless 
area characteristics will be maintained or improved over the long-term 
with the exception of paragraphs (c)(5) and (6) of this section, and 
one of the following circumstances exists:
    (1) The Regional Forester determines tree-cutting, sale, or removal 
is needed to reduce hazardous fuels to an at-risk community or 
municipal water supply system that is:
    (i) Within the first one-half mile of the community protection 
zone, or
    (ii) Within the next one-mile of the community protection zone, and 
is within an area identified in a Community Wildfire Protection Plan.
    (iii) Projects undertaken pursuant to paragraphs (c)(1)(i) and (ii) 
of this section will focus on cutting and removing generally small 
diameter trees to create fuel conditions that modify fire behavior 
while retaining large trees to the maximum extent practical as 
appropriate to the forest type.
    (2) The Regional Forester determines tree-cutting, sale, or removal 
is needed outside the community protection zone where there is a 
significant risk that a wildland fire disturbance event could adversely 
affect a municipal water

[[Page 21290]]

supply system or the maintenance of that system. A significant risk 
exists where the history of fire occurrence, and fire hazard and risk 
indicate a serious likelihood that a wildland fire disturbance event 
would present a high risk of threat to a municipal water supply system.
    (i) Projects will focus on cutting and removing generally small 
diameter trees to create fuel conditions that modify fire behavior 
while retaining large trees to the maximum extent practical as 
appropriate to the forest type.
    (ii) Projects are expected to be infrequent.
    (3) Tree-cutting, sale, or removal is needed to maintain or restore 
the characteristics of ecosystem composition, structure and processes. 
These projects are expected to be infrequent.
    (4) Tree-cutting, sale, or removal is needed to improve habitat for 
Federally threatened, endangered, proposed, or Agency designated 
sensitive species; in coordination with the Colorado Department of 
Natural Resources, including the Colorado Division of Wildlife.
    (5) Tree-cutting, sale, or removal is incidental to the 
implementation of a management activity not otherwise prohibited by 
this subpart.
    (6) Tree-cutting, sale, or removal is needed and appropriate for 
personal or administrative use, as provided for in 36 CFR part 223, 
subpart A.


Sec.  294.43  Prohibition on road construction and reconstruction.

    (a) General. A road may not be constructed or reconstructed in a 
Colorado Roadless Area except as provided in paragraphs (b) and (c) of 
this section.
    (b) Upper Tier Acres. Notwithstanding the prohibition in paragraph 
(a) of this section, a road may only be constructed or reconstructed in 
Colorado Roadless Area upper tier acres if the Responsible Official 
determines that:
    (1) A road is needed pursuant to reserved or outstanding rights, or 
as provided for by statute or treaty.
    (2) For any road construction/reconstruction authorized pursuant to 
this provision, the Responsible Official must determine:
    (i) Motorized access, without road construction is not technically 
feasible;
    (ii) When proposing to construct a forest road, that a temporary 
road would not provide reasonable access; and
    (iii) Within a native cutthroat trout catchment or identified 
recovery watershed, whether road construction will diminish, over the 
long-term, conditions in the water influence zone and in the native 
cutthroat habitat.
    (c) Non-Upper Tier Acres. Notwithstanding the prohibition in 
paragraph (a) of this section, a road or temporary road may only be 
constructed or reconstructed in Colorado Roadless Areas outside upper 
tier acres if the Responsible Official determines:
    (1) That one of the following exceptions exists:
    (i) A road is needed pursuant to reserved or outstanding rights, or 
as provided for by statute or treaty;
    (ii) Road realignment is needed to prevent irreparable resource 
damage that arises from the design, location, use, or deterioration of 
a forest road and that cannot be mitigated by road maintenance. Road 
realignment may occur under this paragraph only if the road is deemed 
essential for administrative or public access, public health and 
safety, or other authorized use;
    (iii) Road reconstruction is needed to implement a road safety 
improvement project on a forest road determined to be hazardous on the 
basis of accident experience or accident potential on that road;
    (iv) The Regional Forester determines a road is needed to allow for 
the construction, reconstruction, or maintenance of an authorized water 
conveyance structure which is operated pursuant to a pre-existing water 
court decree (see also Sec.  294.44(b)(1));
    (v) A temporary road is needed to protect public health and safety 
in cases of threat of flood, fire, or other catastrophic event that, 
without intervention, would cause the loss of life or property;
    (vi) The Regional Forester determines a temporary road is needed to 
facilitate tree-cutting, sale, or removal (Sec.  294.42(c)(1)) within 
the first one-half mile of the community protection zone to reduce the 
wildfire hazard to an at-risk community or municipal water supply 
system;
    (vii) The Regional Forester determines a temporary road is needed 
to facilitate tree-cutting, sale or removal (Sec.  294.42(c)(3)) within 
the first one-half mile of the community protection zone to maintain or 
restore characteristics of ecosystem composition, structure and 
processes;
    (viii) A temporary road is needed within a Colorado Roadless Area 
pursuant to the exploration or development of an existing oil and gas 
lease that does not prohibit road construction or reconstruction, 
including the construction of infrastructure necessary to transport the 
product, on National Forest System lands that are under lease issued by 
the Secretary of the Interior as of [final rule effective date]. The 
Forest Service shall not authorize the Bureau of Land Management to 
grant any request for a waiver, exception, or modification to any oil 
or gas lease if doing so would result in any road construction or tree 
cutting within a Colorado Roadless Area beyond that which was 
authorized by the terms and conditions of the lease at the time of 
issuance; or
    (ix) A temporary road is needed for coal exploration and coal-
related surface activities for certain lands within Colorado Roadless 
Areas in the North Fork coal mining area of the Grand Mesa, 
Uncompahgre, and Gunnison National Forests as defined by the North Fork 
coal mining area displayed on the final Colorado Roadless Areas map. 
Such roads may also be used for collecting and transporting coal mine 
methane. Any buried infrastructure, including pipelines, needed for the 
capture, collection, and use of coal mine methane will be located 
within the rights-of-way of temporary roads that are otherwise 
necessary for coal-related surface activities including the 
installation and operation of methane venting wells.
    (2) If proposed road construction/reconstruction meets one of the 
exceptions, subject to the legal rights identified in 36 CFR 
294.43(c)(1), the following must be determined:
    (i) Motorized access, without road construction is not technically 
feasible;
    (ii) When proposing to construct a forest road, that a temporary 
road would not provide reasonable access;
    (iii) Road construction is consistent with the applicable land 
management plan direction;
    (iv) Within a native cutthroat trout catchment or identified 
recovery watershed, road construction will not diminish, over the long-
term, conditions in the water influence zone and in the native 
cutthroat habitat; and
    (d) Road construction/reconstruction project implementation and 
management. Incorporate the following elements into any road 
construction/reconstruction projects implemented within Colorado 
Roadless Areas.
    (1) Road construction. If it is determined that a road is 
authorized in a Colorado Roadless Area, conduct construction in a 
manner that reduces, to the extent practicable, effects on surface 
resources, and prevents unnecessary or unreasonable surface 
disturbance.
    (2) Road decommissioning. Decommission any road and restore the 
affected landscape when it is determined that the road is no longer 
needed for the established purpose, or upon termination or expiration 
of a

[[Page 21291]]

contract, authorization, or permit, whichever is sooner. Require the 
inclusion of a road decommissioning provision in all such contracts or 
permits. Design decommissioning to stabilize, restore, and revegetate 
unneeded roads to a more natural state to protect resources and enhance 
roadless area characteristics.
    (3) Road designations. The designation of a temporary road 
constructed or reconstructed pursuant to this subpart may not be 
changed to forest road except where a forest road is allowed under 
paragraphs (b) and (c) of this section.
    (4) Road use. Use of motor vehicles for administrative purposes by 
the Forest Service and by fire, emergency, or law enforcement personnel 
is allowed. All roads constructed pursuant to paragraphs (b) and (c) of 
this section shall prohibit public motorized vehicles (including off-
highway vehicles) except:
    (i) Where specifically used for the purpose for which the road was 
established;
    (ii) Motor vehicle use that is specifically authorized under an 
authorization issued under Federal law or regulation.
    (5) Road maintenance. Maintenance of roads is permissible in 
Colorado Roadless Areas.


Sec.  294.44  Prohibition on linear construction zones.

    (a) General. A linear construction zone may not be constructed or 
reconstructed in Colorado Roadless Areas except as provided in 
paragraph (b) of this section.
    (b) Linear Construction Zones. Notwithstanding the prohibition in 
paragraph (a) of this section, the Regional Forester may authorize a 
linear construction zone within a Colorado Roadless Area for:
    (1) The construction, reconstruction, or maintenance of an 
authorized water conveyance structure which is operated pursuant to a 
pre-existing water court decree (see Sec.  294.43(c)(1)(iv));
    (2) The construction, reconstruction, or maintenance of existing or 
future authorized electrical power lines or telecommunication lines. 
Authorize electrical power lines or telecommunication lines within 
Colorado Roadless Areas only if there is no opportunity for the project 
to be implemented outside of a Colorado Roadless Area without causing 
substantially greater environmental damage; or
    (3) The construction or reconstruction of a pipeline associated 
with operation of an oil and gas lease that allows surface use within a 
Colorado Roadless Area or the construction or reconstruction of a 
pipeline needed to connect to infrastructure within a Colorado Roadless 
Area from outside a Colorado Roadless Area where such a connection 
would cause substantially less environmental damage than alternative 
routes. The construction of pipelines for the purposes of transporting 
oil or natural gas through a Colorado Roadless Area, where the 
source(s) and destination(s) of the pipeline are located exclusively 
outside of a Colorado Roadless Area, shall not be authorized.
    (4) If a proposed linear construction zone meets one of the 
exceptions, then the following must be determined:
    (i) Motorized access, without a linear construction zone, is not 
technically feasible;
    (ii) A linear construction zone is consistent with the applicable 
land management plan direction;
    (iii) Within a native cutthroat trout catchment or identified 
recovery watershed, a linear construction zone will not diminish, over 
the long-term, conditions in the water influence zone and in the native 
cutthroat habitat; and
    (c) Linear construction zone decommissioning. Where a linear 
construction zone is constructed in a Colorado Roadless Area, 
installation of the linear facility will be done in a manner that 
minimizes ground disturbance, including placement within existing 
right-of-ways where feasible. All authorizations approving the 
installation of linear facilities through the use of a linear 
construction zone shall include a Responsible Official approved 
reclamation plan for reclaiming the affected landscape. Upon completion 
of the installation of a linear facility via the use of a linear 
construction zone, all areas of surface disturbance shall be reclaimed 
as prescribed in the authorization and the approved reclamation plan 
and may not be waived.


Sec.  294.45  Environmental documentation.

    (a) Environmental documentation will be prepared pursuant to 
Section 102 of the National Environmental Policy Act, 40 CFR 1500, and 
36 CFR part 220 for any proposed action within a Colorado Roadless 
Area. Proposals that substantially alter the undeveloped character of a 
Colorado Roadless Area require an Environmental Impact Statement (EIS).
    (b) The Forest Service will offer cooperating agency status to the 
State of Colorado, for all proposed projects and planning activities to 
be implemented on lands within Colorado Roadless Areas. Where the 
Forest Service does not have the authority to offer formal cooperating 
agency status, the Forest Service shall offer to coordinate with the 
State.


Sec.  294.46  Other activities.

    (a) Oil and Gas Lease Stipulations. Oil and gas leases issued 
within a Colorado Roadless Area after [final rule effective date] will 
prohibit road construction/reconstruction. The Forest Service shall not 
authorize the Bureau of Land Management to grant any request for a 
waiver, exception, or modification to any oil or gas lease if doing so 
would result in any road construction within a Colorado Roadless Area.
    (b) Oil and Gas Surface Use Plans of Operation. Where applicable, 
during the review of any application for a surface use plan of 
operations affecting lands within a Colorado Roadless Area, the 
Responsible Official will:
    (1) Locate, to the extent possible without compromising health and 
safety standards, roads, well sites, and facilities on pre-existing 
areas of surface disturbance. Project design shall minimize the amount 
of necessary temporary road construction or reconstruction.
    (2) Consider an alternative for proposed operations that addresses 
locating directional drilling of multi-well sites on pre-existing areas 
of surface disturbance. Such an alternative can be dismissed from 
detailed analysis with clear justification.
    (3) Restrict road construction for leases partially within Colorado 
Roadless Areas, to the extent practical, to portions of the lease 
outside of Colorado Roadless Areas except when doing so will be 
substantially more environmentally damaging, compromise safety 
standards, or is unfeasible due to topography or surface conditions.
    (4) Perform, to the extent feasible, reclamation of surface 
disturbances incrementally, to minimize the total area of disturbance 
at any given point in time during the exploration or development of a 
lease.
    (5) Design, to the extent feasible, temporary roads and facilities 
to blend with the terrain to minimize visual impacts and to facilitate 
restoration when the road is no longer needed.
    (6) Co-locate, wherever possible and consistent with health and 
safety standards, power lines, flow lines and pipelines within the 
right-of-way of roads to minimize the area of surface disturbance.
    (7) Consider new and developing low impact techniques and 
technologies and either apply or dismiss with justification.

[[Page 21292]]

    (8) Utilize the best available technology, to the extent possible, 
to minimize noise and air emissions.
    (c) Trails. Nothing in this subpart shall affect the current or 
future management of motorized and non-motorized trails in Colorado 
Roadless Areas. Decisions concerning the management or status of 
motorized and non-motorized trails within Colorado Roadless Areas under 
this subpart shall be made during the applicable forest travel 
management processes.
    (d) Motorized access. Nothing in this subpart shall be construed as 
limiting the authority of the responsible official to approve existing 
and future motorized access not requiring road construction or 
reconstruction in Colorado Roadless Areas associated with grazing 
permits, special use authorizations, and other authorizations.
    (e) Livestock grazing. The authority to issue livestock grazing 
permits on national forest system lands within a Colorado Roadless Area 
is not affected by this subpart; however no new temporary or forest 
roads shall be authorized through grazing permits issued after [final 
rule effective date].


Sec.  294.47  Modifications and administrative corrections.

    Modifications and administrative corrections pursuant to this 
subpart, after coordination with the State, may be made under the 
following circumstances:
    (a) Modifications to boundaries. The Chief of the Forest Service 
may modify the boundaries of any designated Colorado Roadless Area 
identified in Sec.  294.49 or add new Colorado Roadless Areas based on 
changed circumstances. Modifications and additions will be reflected in 
the set of maps maintained at the national headquarters office of the 
Forest Service. The construction or reconstruction of a temporary road 
or tree-cutting, sale, or removal will not result in any boundary 
modification of a Colorado Roadless Area. Public notice with a minimum 
90-day comment period will be provided for any proposed Colorado 
Roadless Area boundary modifications or additions.
    (b) Administrative corrections to boundaries. The Chief of the 
Forest Service may issue administrative corrections after public notice 
and a 30-day comment period. Administrative corrections to the maps of 
any designated Colorado Roadless Areas identified in Sec.  294.49 are 
adjustments to remedy errors such as clerical, topographical, or 
improvements in mapping technology. Other than clerical errors, an 
administrative correction is based on improved field data due to 
updated imagery, global positioning system data, or other collected 
field data.
    (c) Amendments to rule language. Any amendment of this subpart will 
include coordination with the State and the appropriate level of NEPA 
analysis. A minimum 90-day comment period will be provided.


Sec.  294.48  Scope and applicability.

    (a) This subpart does not revoke, suspend, or modify any permit, 
contract, lease, or other legal instrument authorizing or granting 
rights to the occupancy and use of National Forest system land issued 
prior to [final rule effective date] nor does it affect the authority 
or the discretion of the responsible official to reissue any such 
permit, contract, or other legal instrument upon its expiration or 
termination.
    (b) This subpart does not revoke, suspend, or modify any project or 
activity decision made prior to [final rule effective date].
    (c) The provisions set forth in this subpart provide the maximum 
level of tree-cutting, sale and removal, and road construction and 
reconstruction activity allowed within Colorado Roadless Areas. Land 
management plan components can be more restrictive than this subpart 
and will continue to provide direction and guidance for projects and 
activities within Colorado Roadless Areas. Nothing in this subpart 
shall prohibit a responsible official from further restricting 
activities allowed within Colorado Roadless Areas. This subpart does 
not compel the amendment or revision of any land management plan.
    (d) The prohibitions and restrictions established in this subpart 
are not subject to reconsideration, revision, or rescission in 
subsequent project decisions or land management plan amendments or 
revisions undertaken pursuant to 36 CFR part 219.
    (e) Nothing in this subpart waives any applicable requirements 
regarding site specific environmental analysis, public involvement, 
consultation with Tribes and other agencies, or compliance with 
applicable laws.
    (f) If any provision in this subpart or its application to any 
person or to certain circumstances is held to be invalid, the remainder 
of the regulations in this subpart and their application remain in 
force.
    (g) After [final rule effective date] the rule promulgated on 
January 12, 2001, (66 FR 3244) shall have no effect within the State of 
Colorado.


Sec.  294.49  List of designated Colorado Roadless Areas.

    All National Forest System lands within the State of Colorado 
listed in this section are hereby designated as Colorado Roadless 
Areas.

------------------------------------------------------------------------
 
-------------------------------------------------------------------------
                    Arapaho-Roosevelt National Forest
------------------------------------------------------------------------
1. Bard Creek.
2. Byers Peak.
3. Cache La Poudre Adjacent Area.
4. Cherokee Park.
5. Comanche Peak Adjacent Area.
6. Copper Mountain.
7. Crosier Mountain.
8. Gold Run.
9. Green Ridge--East.
10. Green Ridge--West.
11. Grey Rock.
12. Hell Canyon.
13. Indian Peaks Adjacent Area.
14. James Peak.
15. Kelly Creek.
16. Lion Gulch.
17. Mount Evans Adjacent Area.
18. Mount Sniktau.
19. Neota Adjacent Area.
20. Never Summer Adjacent Area.
21. North Lone Pine.
22. North St. Vrain.
23. Rawah Adjacent Area.
24. Square Top Mountain.
25. Troublesome.
26. Vasquez Adjacent Area.
27. White Pine Mountain.
28. Williams Fork Ptarmigan Adjacent.
------------------------------------------------------------------------
            Grand Mesa, Uncompahgre, Gunnison National Forest
------------------------------------------------------------------------
29. Agate Creek.
30. American Flag Mountain.
31. Baldy.
32. Battlements.
33. Beaver.
34. Beckwiths.
35. Calamity Basin.
36. Cannibal Plateau.
37. Canyon Creek--Antero.
38. Canyon Creek.
39. Carson.
40. Castle.
41. Cataract.
42. Cimarron Ridge.
43. Clear Fork.
44. Cochetopa.
45. Cochetopa Hills.
46. Cottonwoods.
47. Crystal Creek.
48. Crystal Peak.
49. Curecanti.
50. Currant Creek.
51. Deer Creek.
52. Dominguez.
53. Double Top.
54. East Elk.
55. Electric Mountain.
56. Failes Creek-Soldier Creek.
57. Flatirons.
58. Flattop Mountain.
59. Flattops--Elk Park.
60. Gothic.
61. Granite Basin.
62. Hightower.
63. Hope Lake.

[[Page 21293]]

 
64. Horse Ranch Park.
65. Horsefly Canyon.
66. Huntsman Ridge.
67. Italian Mountain.
68. Johnson Basin.
69. Kannah Creek.
70. Kelso Mesa.
71. Last Dollar--Sheep Creek.
72. Little Cimarron.
73. Long Canyon.
74. Matchless Mountain.
75. Matterhorn.
76. McClure Pass.
77. Mendicant.
78. Mineral Mountain.
79. Mirror Lake.
80. Mount Lamborn.
81. Munsey-Erickson.
82. Naturita Canyon.
83. North Henson.
84. Pilot Knob.
85. Poverty Gulch.
86. Salt Creek.
87. Sanford Basin.
88. Sawtooth.
89. Schofield Pass.
90. Soap Creek.
91. Steuben.
92. Sunnyside.
93. Sunset.
94. Texas Creek.
95. Tomahawk.
96. Turner Creek.
97. Turret Ridge.
98. Unaweep.
99. Union.
100. Whetstone.
101. Whitehouse Mountain.
102. Willow Creek.
103. Wilson.
104. Windy Point.
------------------------------------------------------------------------
                      Manti-La Sal National Forest
------------------------------------------------------------------------
105. Roc Creek.
------------------------------------------------------------------------
                     Pike-San Isabel National Forest
------------------------------------------------------------------------
106. Antelope Creek.
107. Aspen Ridge.
108. Babcock Hole.
109. Badger Creek.
110. Boreas.
111. Buffalo Peaks East.
112. Buffalo Peaks South.
113. Buffalo Peaks West.
114. Burning Bear.
115. Chicago Ridge.
116. Chipeta.
117. Cuchara North.
118. Cuchara South.
119. Elk Mountain--Collegiate North.
120. Elk Mountain--Collegiate South.
121. Elk Mountain--Collegiate West.
122. Farnum.
123. Green Mountain.
124. Greenhorn Mountain: Badito Cone to Dry Creek.
125. Greenhorn Mountain: Cisneros Creek to Upper Turkey Creek.
126. Greenhorn Mountain: Graneros Creek to Section 10.
127. Greenhorn Mountain: Little Saint Charles Creek to Greenhorn Creek.
128. Gunbarrel.
129. Hardscrabble.
130. Highline.
131. Holy Cross.
132. Hoosier Ridge.
133. Jefferson.
134. Kaufman Ridge.
135. Kreutzer--Princeton.
136. Little Fountain Creek.
137. Lost Creek East.
138. Lost Creek South.
139. Lost Creek West.
140. Methodist Mountain.
141. Mount Antero.
142. Mount Elbert.
143. Mount Evans.
144. Mount Massive.
145. Pikes Peak East.
146. Pikes Peak West.
147. Porphyry Peak.
148. Puma Hills.
149. Purgatoire.
150. Rampart East..
151. Rampart West.
152. Reveille Canyon.
153. Romley.
154. Sangre de Cristo: Alvarado Campground to Music Pass.
155. Sangre de Cristo: Blanca Peak to Slide Mountain.
156. Sangre de Cristo: Lake Creek to Hermit Creek.
157. Sangre de Cristo: Medano Pass to Carbonate Mountain.
158. Sangre de Cristo: Silverheels Gulch to Hunts Creek.
159. Sangre de Cristo: West Creek to Big Cottonwood.
160. Schoolmarm Mountain.
161. Scraggy Peaks.
162. Sheep Rock.
163. Silverheels.
164. Spanish Peaks.
165. Square Top Mountain.
166. St. Charles Peak.
167. Starvation Creek.
168. Tanner Peak.
169. Thirtynine Mile Mountain.
170. Thunder Butte.
171. Weston Peak.
------------------------------------------------------------------------
                       Rio Grande National Forest
------------------------------------------------------------------------
172. Alamosa River.
173. Antora Meadows-Bear Creek.
174. Beartown.
175. Beaver Mountain.
176. Bennet Mountain-Blowout-Willow Creek-Lion Point-Greenie Mountain.
177. Big Buck-Kitty-Ruby.
178. Box-Road Canyon.
179. Bristol Head.
180. Butterfly.
181. Chama Basin.
182. Conejos River-Lake Fork.
183. Copper Mountain-Sulphur.
184. Cotton Creek.
185. Crestone.
186. Cumbres.
187. Deep Creek-Boot Mountain.
188. Dorsey Creek.
189. Elkhorn Peak.
190. Four Mile Creek.
191. Fox Creek.
192. Fox Mountain.
193. Gibbs Creek.
194. Gold Creek-Cascade Creek.
195. Hot Springs.
196. Indian Ridge.
197. Kitty Creek.
198. La Garita.
199. Lake Fork.
200. Lower East Bellows.
201. Middle Alder.
202. Miller Creek.
203. Pole Creek.
204. Pole Mountain-Finger Mesa.
205. Red Mountain.
206. Ruby Lake.
207. Sawlog.
208. Sheep Mountain.
209. Silver Lakes-Stunner.
210. Snowshoe Mountain.
211. Spectacle Lake.
212. Spruce Hole-Sheep Creek.
213. Stunner Pass-Dolores Canyon.
214. Sulphur Tunnel.
215. Summit Peak-Elwood Pass.
216. Taylor Canyon.
217. Tewksberry.
218. Tobacco Lakes.
219. Trout Mountain-Elk Mountain.
220. Ute Pass.
221. Wason Park.
222. Wightman Fork--Upper Burro.
223. Wightman Fork--Lookout.
224. Willow Mountain.
------------------------------------------------------------------------
                          Routt National Forest
------------------------------------------------------------------------
225. Barber Basin.
226. Black Mountain.
227. Bunker Basin.
228. Bushy Creek.
229. Chatfield.
230. Chedsey Creek.
231. Dome.
232. Dome Peak.
233. Elkhorn.
234. Gold Creek.
235. Grizzly Helena.
236. Kettle Lakes.
237. Little Green Creek.
238. Long Park.
239. Mad Creek.
240. Morrison Creek.
241. Never Summer North.
242. Never Summer South.
243. Nipple Peak North.
244. Nipple Peak South.
245. Pagoda Peak.
246. Shield Mountain.
247. South Fork.
248. Sugarloaf North.
249. Sugarloaf South.
250. Troublesome North.
251. Troublesome South.
252. Walton Peak.
253. Whalen Creek.
------------------------------------------------------------------------
                        San Juan National Forest
------------------------------------------------------------------------
254. Baldy.
255. Blackhawk Mountain.
256. East Animas.
257. Fish Creek.
258. Florida River.
259. Graham Park.
260. HD Mountains.
261. Hermosa.
262. Lizard Head Adjacent.
263. Piedra Area Adjacent.
264. Runlett Park.
265. Ryman.

[[Page 21294]]

 
266. San Miguel.
267. South San Juan Adjacent.
268. Storm Peak.
269. Treasure Mountain.
270. Turkey Creek.
271. Weminuche Adjacent.
272. West Needles.
273. Winter Hills/Serviceberry Mountain.
------------------------------------------------------------------------
                       White River National Forest
------------------------------------------------------------------------
274. Adam Mountain.
275. Ashcroft.
276. Assignation Ridge.
277. Baldy Mountain.
278. Basalt Mountain A.
279. Basalt Mountain B.
280. Berry Creek.
281. Big Ridge to South Fork A.
282. Big Ridge to South Fork B.
283. Black Lake East.
284. Black Lake West.
285. Blair Mountain.
286. Boulder.
287. Budges.
288. Buffer Mountain.
289. Burnt Mountain.
290. Chicago Ridge.
291. Corral Creek.
292. Crystal River.
293. Deep Creek.
294. Dome Peak.
295. East Divide-Four Mile Park.
296. East Vail.
297. East Willow.
298. Elk Creek B.
299. Elliot Ridge.
300. Fawn Creek-Little Lost Park.
301. Freeman Creek.
302. Gallo Hill.
303. Game Creek.
304. Grizzly Creek.
305. Gypsum Creek.
306. Hardscrabble.
307. Hay Park.
308. Holy Cross City.
309. Homestake.
310. Hoosier Ridge.
311. Housetop Mountain.
312. Hunter.
313. Little Grand Mesa.
314. Lower Piney.
315. Mamm Peak.
316. Maroon East.
317. Maryland Creek.
318. McClure Pass.
319. McFarlane.
320. Meadow Mountain A.
321. Meadow Mountain B.
322. Morapos A.
323. Morapos B.
324. Mormon Creek.
325. No Name.
326. North Elk.
327. North Independent A.
328. North Independent B.
329. North Woody.
330. Pagoda Peak.
331. Piney Lake.
332. Porcupine Peak.
333. Ptarmigan A.
334. Ptarmigan B.
335. Ptarmigan C.
336. Ptarmigan Hill A.
337. Ptarmigan Hill B.
338. Red Dirt A.
339. Red Dirt B.
340. Red Mountain.
341. Red Table.
342. Reno Mountain.
343. Ripple Creek Pass-Trappers Lake.
344. Ryan Gulch.
345. Salt Creek.
346. Sloan Peak.
347. Spraddle Creek A.
348. Spraddle Creek B.
349. Sweetwater A.
350. Sweetwater B.
351. Tenderfoot Mountain.
352. Tenmile.
353. Thompson Creek.
354. Tigiwon.
355. Treasure Mountain.
356. West Brush Creek.
357. West Lake Creek.
358. Wildcat Mountain.
359. Wildcat Mountain B.
360. Wildcat Mountain C.
361. Williams Fork.
362. Willow.
363. Woods Lake.
------------------------------------------------------------------------


    Dated: April 11, 2011.
Jay J. Jensen,
Deputy Under Secretary, NRE.
[FR Doc. 2011-9119 Filed 4-14-11; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE P