[Federal Register Volume 79, Number 47 (Tuesday, March 11, 2014)]
[Pages 13683-13684]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2014-05260]




Proposed Ross Project in Crook County Wyoming for In-Situ Leach 
Uranium Milling Facilities

AGENCY: Nuclear Regulatory Commission.

ACTION: Final supplemental environmental impact statement; issuance.


SUMMARY: Notice is hereby given that the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory 
Commission (NRC) published the Final Supplemental Environmental Impact 
Statement (SEIS) (NUREG-1910, Supplement 5) for the Ross In-Situ 
Uranium Recovery (ISR) Project (Ross Project). By letter dated January 
4, 2011, Strata Energy, Inc. (Strata) submitted an application to the 
NRC for a new source and byproduct materials license for the Ross 
Project, which Strata proposes to be located in Crook County, Wyoming. 
Strata is proposing to recover uranium from the Ross Project site using 
the ISR process.

ADDRESSES: Please refer to Docket ID NRC-2011-0148 when contacting the 
NRC about the availability of information regarding this document. You 
may access publicly-available information related to this action by the 
following methods:
     Federal Rulemaking Web site: Go to: http://www.regulations.gov and search for Docket ID NRC-2011-0148. Address 
questions about NRC dockets to Ms. Carol Gallagher; telephone: 301-287-
3422; email: [email protected]. For technical questions, contact 
the individual listed in the FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT section of 
this document.
     NRC's Agencywide Documents Access and Management System 
(ADAMS): You may access publicly available documents online in the NRC 
Library at http://www.nrc.gov/reading-rm/adams.html. To begin the 
search, select ``ADAMS Public Documents'' and then select ``Begin Web-
based ADAMS Search.'' For problems with ADAMS, please contact the NRC's 
Public Document Room (PDR) reference staff at 1-800-397-4209, or 301-
415-4737, or by email to [email protected]. The ADAMS accession 
number for each document referenced in this notice (if that document is 
available in ADAMS) is provided the first time that a document is 
referenced. The Final SEIS (NUREG-1910, Supplement 5) is available in 
ADAMS under Accession No. ML14056A096.
     NRC's PDR: You may examine and purchase copies of public 
documents at the NRC's PDR, Room O1-F21, One White Flint North, 11555 
Rockville Pike, Rockville, Maryland 20852.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Johari Moore, Office of Federal and 
State Materials and Environmental Management Programs, U.S. Nuclear 
Regulatory Commission, Washington, DC 20555-0001; telephone: 301-415-
7694, email: [email protected].

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Under the NRC's environmental protection 
regulations in Part 51 of Title 10 of the Code of Federal Regulations 
(10 CFR), that implement the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969 
(NEPA), preparation of an Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) or 
supplement to an EIS (SEIS) is required for issuance of a license to 
possess and use source material for uranium milling (see 10 CFR 
    In May 2009, the NRC staff issued NUREG-1910, ``Generic 
Environmental Impact Statement for In-Situ Leach Uranium Milling 
Facilities'' (herein referred to as the GEIS). In the GEIS, NRC 
assessed the potential environmental impacts from construction, 
operation, aquifer restoration, and decommissioning of an ISR facility 
located in four specific geographic regions of the western United 
States. The proposed Ross Project is located within the Nebraska-South 
Dakota-Wyoming Uranium Milling Region identified in the GEIS. This 
Final SEIS supplements the GEIS and incorporates by reference relevant 
portions from the GEIS, and uses site-specific information from the 
applicant's license application and other independent sources to 
fulfill the requirements in 10 CFR 51.20(b)(8).
    The Final SEIS was prepared in response to an application submitted 
by Strata by letter dated January 4, 2011. The applicant proposes the 
construction, operation, aquifer restoration, and decommissioning of an 
ISR facility to recover uranium.
    The Final SEIS was prepared by the NRC and its contractor, 
Attenuation Environmental Company (AEC), in cooperation with the U.S. 
Bureau of Land Management (BLM), in compliance with NEPA, and the NRC's 
regulations for implementing NEPA (10 CFR Part 51).
    The proposed Ross Project will be located approximately 34.6 
kilometers (km) (21.5 miles [mi]) north of the town of Moorcroft, 
Wyoming. The proposed facility would encompass approximately 697 
hectares (ha) (1,721 acres [ac]).
    The Final SEIS is being issued as part of the NRC's process to 
decide whether to issue a license to Strata pursuant to 10 CFR Part 40. 
In this Final SEIS, the NRC staff has assessed the potential 
environmental impacts from the construction, operation, aquifer 
restoration, and decommissioning of the proposed Ross Project. The NRC 
staff assessed the impacts of the proposed action and its alternatives 
on land use; historical and cultural resources; visual and scenic 
resources; climatology, meteorology and air quality; geology, minerals 
and soils; water resources; ecological resources; socioeconomics; 
environmental justice; noise; traffic and transportation; public and 
occupational health and safety; and waste management. Additionally, the 
Final SEIS analyzes and compares the benefits and costs of the proposed 
action. In preparing this Final SEIS, the NRC staff also considered, 
evaluated, and addressed the public comments received on the Draft SEIS 
published on March 29, 2013 (78 FR 19330). Appendix B of the Final SEIS 
captures the public's comments and the NRC's responses.
    In preparing the Final SEIS, the NRC staff evaluated site-specific 
data and information from the Ross Project to determine if Strata's 
proposed activities and the site characteristics were consistent with 
those evaluated in the GEIS. The NRC then determined which relevant 
sections of, and impact conclusions in, the GEIS could be incorporated 
by reference. The NRC staff also determined if additional data or 
analysis was needed to assess the potential environmental impacts for a 
specific environmental resource area. The NRC documented its 
assessments and conclusions in the Final SEIS.
    In addition to the action proposed by Strata, the NRC staff 
addressed the no-action alternative, as well as the North Ross site 
alternative, in which the central processing plant (CPP), auxiliary and 
support buildings and structures,

[[Page 13684]]

and surface impoundments would be located at a different location to 
the north of the Proposed Project. All the alternatives were analyzed 
in detail. The no-action alternative serves as a baseline for 
comparison of the potential environmental impacts of the proposed 
    After weighing the impacts of the proposed action and comparing the 
alternatives, the NRC staff, in accordance with 10 CFR 51.91(d), sets 
forth its recommendation regarding the proposed action. Unless safety 
issues mandate otherwise, the NRC staff recommends that the proposed 
action be approved (i.e., the NRC should issue a source material 
license for the proposed Ross Project).
    The Final SEIS for the proposed Ross Project may also be accessed 
on the internet at http://www.nrc.gov/reading-rm/doc-collections/nuregs/staff/ by selecting ``NUREG-1910'' and then ``Supplement 5.'' 
Additionally, a copy of the Final SEIS will be available at the 
following public libraries:

Crook County Library, Hulett Branch, 401 Sager Street, Hulett, WY 
Crook County Library, Moorcroft Branch, 105 East Converse, Moorcroft, 
WY 82721.

    Dated at Rockville, Maryland, this day 27 of February 2014.

    For the Nuclear Regulatory Commission.
Aby Mohseni,
Deputy Director, Environmental Protection and Performance Assessment 
Directorate, Division of Waste Management and Environmental Protection, 
Office of Federal and State Materials and Environmental Management 
[FR Doc. 2014-05260 Filed 3-10-14; 8:45 am]