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Notice of Availability of Finding of No Significant Impact, Swalley ID

Notice of Availability of Final Environmental Assessment and Finding of No Significant Impact for Swalley Irrigation District Modernization Project

The United States Department of Agriculture Natural Resources Conservation Service (USDA-NRCS), with assistance from Farmers Conservation Alliance and the Energy Trust of Oregon and in cooperation with Swalley Irrigation District and the Deschutes Basin Board of Control as the project sponsor, announces the availability of a Final Watershed Plan-Environmental Assessment and a Finding of No Significant Impact to improve aging irrigation infrastructure in Swalley Irrigation District.

The planned improvements include piping up to 16.6 miles of canals and laterals owned by Swalley Irrigation District as part of an agricultural water conveyance efficiency project. The project would increase flows in the Deschutes River downstream of North Canal Dam during the irrigation season and decrease energy use associated with pumping.

These improvements may be partially funded through the NRCS Watershed and Flood Prevention Operations Program (authorized by Public Law 83-566).

The project purposes are to: 1) improve water conservation in Swalley Irrigation District’s conveyance systems; 2) support existing agriculture through improved water delivery reliability; and 3) improve public safety by eliminating risks from open canals.

Pursuant to section 102(2)(c) of the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969, the Council on Environmental Quality Regulations (40 CFR Part 1500), and the Natural Resources Conservation Service Regulations (7 CFR Part 650), the USDA-NRCS gives notice that an environmental impact statement is not being prepared for the Swalley Irrigation District Modernization Project, in Deschutes County, Oregon.

The environmental assessment of this federally assisted action indicates that the project will not cause significant local, regional or national impacts on the environment. As a result of these findings, Ronald Alvarado, State Conservationist, has determined that the preparation and review of an environmental impact statement is not needed for this project.

The notice of finding of no significant impact (FONSI) has been forwarded to various Federal, State and local agencies and interested parties. The FONSI and other supporting planning documents are available for public view on the following website: www.oregonwatershedplans.org/swalley-id.

No administrative action on implementation of the proposal will be taken until Dec. 18.

For more information, contact Tom Makowski, NRCS, at 503-621-7626 or tom.makowski@or.usda.gov

Publish Date: Dec. 3, 2018