The Bureau of Reclamation and Washington State Department of Ecology this week released a draft Programmatic Environmental Impact Statement for the Yakima River Basin Integrated Water Resource Management Plan for public comment.
The draft PEIS evaluates two alternatives to meet the water supply and ecosystem restoration needs in the Yakima River basin identified as the No Action Alternative, and the Yakima River Basin Integrated Water Resource Management Plan Alternative.
A preferred alternative has not been identified.
The Integrated Plan's seven elements include: reservoir fish passage; structural and operational changes to existing facilities; surface water storage; groundwater storage; habitat/watershed protection and enhancement; enhanced water conservation; and market-based reallocation of water resources.
The Bureau and state say the draft PEIS satisfies National Environmental Policy Act and the Washington State Environmental Policy Act requirements.
The draft PEIS will be formally filed with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency today, Nov. 18.
Oral comments may be presented at one of six public meetings from 1:30 to 3:30 p.m., and 5 to 7 p.m. at the following locations:
-- Dec. 5, 2011 U.S. Forest Service Ranger Station, 803 W. 2nd St., Cle Elum, WA 98922
-- Dec. 6, 2011 Hal Holmes Center, 209 N. Ruby St., Ellensburg, WA 98926
-- Dec. 14, 2011 Yakima Arboretum, 1401 Arboretum Drive, Yakima, WA 98901
For more information see http://www.usbr.gov/pn/programs/yrbwep/2011integratedplan/index.html