DOI-BLM-CA-EA-2002-???

From Open Energy Information


NEPA Document Collection for: DOI-BLM-CA-EA-2002-???
EA at Glass Mountain Geothermal Area for Geothermal/Well Field,

Glass Mountain Exploration Environmental Assessment/Initial Study for Geothermal/Well Field

Proposed Action

The proposed project would include construction of two new well pads, for the drilling, completion, and flow testing of two deep (production size) exploration wells and the drilling of a Temperature Gradient Hole (TGH) on one of these well pads. The proposed action would also include testing of three existing exploration wells located within the Unit. The proposed activities are scheduled to begin in the summer of 2002.

The exploration wells would be drilled to an approximate depth of 9, 000 feet and flow tested for up to 30 days. Prior to drilling an exploration well at the 64-27 site, CPN proposes to first drill a TGH to evaluate the extent and quality of the thermal resource. The TGH would be drilled to a depth of 6,000 feet, or 500°F, whichever comes first.


Data Completion Notes

Argonne has EA file - maybe in NGDS?

Data entry based on draft EA complete 8/16









 

<metadesc> : NEPA document related to geothermal resource areas </metadesc>

Resource Analysis

Resource Not
Present
Present,
Not
Affected
Present,
Potentially
Affected
Not
Indicated
Comment Applicant
Proposed
Mitigation
Agency
Imposed
Mitigation
Areas of Critical Environmental Concern
"NEPA_Resource_Analysis" is not in the list of possible values (Not Present, Present, Not Affected, Present, Potentially Affected, Not Indicated) for this property.

 

   
Prime or Unique Farmlands
"NEPA_Resource_Analysis" is not in the list of possible values (Not Present, Present, Not Affected, Present, Potentially Affected, Not Indicated) for this property.

 

   
Floodplains
"NEPA_Resource_Analysis" is not in the list of possible values (Not Present, Present, Not Affected, Present, Potentially Affected, Not Indicated) for this property.

 

   
Wetlands and Riparian Zones
"NEPA_Resource_Analysis" is not in the list of possible values (Not Present, Present, Not Affected, Present, Potentially Affected, Not Indicated) for this property.

 

   
Wild and Scenic Rivers
"NEPA_Resource_Analysis" is not in the list of possible values (Not Present, Present, Not Affected, Present, Potentially Affected, Not Indicated) for this property.

 

   
Wilderness
"NEPA_Resource_Analysis" is not in the list of possible values (Not Present, Present, Not Affected, Present, Potentially Affected, Not Indicated) for this property.

 

   
Geology and Minerals
"NEPA_Resource_Analysis" is not in the list of possible values (Not Present, Present, Not Affected, Present, Potentially Affected, Not Indicated) for this property.

There are no known commercial deposits of precious, strategic, or base metals in the project area. The proposed action would not cause an increase in seismicity in the area.

   
Soils
"NEPA_Resource_Analysis" is not in the list of possible values (Not Present, Present, Not Affected, Present, Potentially Affected, Not Indicated) for this property.

To minimize potential effects from geologic hazards and erosion, Best Management Practices (BMPs) would be employed during construction and maintenance of all project drill sites and access roads.

CloseAll of the proposed project facilities would be located in areas of gentle to moderate slopes of under 10% and in areas of stable soil types. All construction activities will be conducted to prevent unnecessary or undue degradation to the environment. Mitigation measures outlines in EA CA027-EA95-11 will be followed for erosion control. A storm water pollution prevention plan will be submitted to the Regional Water Quality Control Board prior to start of construction activities.
 
Cultural Resources
"NEPA_Resource_Analysis" is not in the list of possible values (Not Present, Present, Not Affected, Present, Potentially Affected, Not Indicated) for this property.

Potential impacts to cultural resources in the project area are described in terms of the distance of identified cultural resource sites to the five sites included in the proposed action.

 
CloseThe USFS shall conduct a cultural resource survey on Well Pad Site 64-27 prior to issuance of a Decision Notice for the project. If the survey results in the discovery of a previously undocumented cultural resource site, the proposed action would be postponed until consultation has taken place and the resources have been appropriately evaluated or treated and specific authorization to begin construction activities is provided by the USFS. Mitigation to avoid effects to eligible sites might include avoidance or data collection. The mitigation plan would be consistent with previous mitigation programs in the area.

Should any prehistoric or historic resources be encountered during site construction activities, construction activities within 50 feet of the discovery would be suspended until the USFS and a qualified consulting archaeologist have assessed the materials. If a decision is made to record the site, recordation shall take place and it will be determined whether project well sites could be relocated to avoid any additional effects. Construction activities in the vicinity of the discovery would not resume until consultation has taken place and the resources have been appropriately evaluated or treated and specific authorization to resume construction activities is provided by the USFS. If avoidance is not feasible, the site will be evaluated by a qualified archaeologist and a determination of eligibility for the NRHP shall be made. If the site is determined to be eligible, then a mitigation proposal (which may include a data recovery program similar to those conducted for similar resources in the vicinity) shall be submitted with the site record to the SHPO for review and concurrence

If prehistoric archaeological deposits that include human remains or objects considered “cultural items” according to the Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation Act (NAGPRA) are discovered during site construction activities, the County Coroner and a qualified archaeologist would be immediately notified and NAGPRA regulations shall be followed. If the remains are identified as American Indian, then local American Indian groups or tribe(s) and the Native American Heritage Commission (NAHC) are required to be notified within 24 hours and consultation will be initiated. The most likely descendants of these remains would be notified and given the opportunity to make recommendations for the remains. If descendant recommendations are made which are not acceptable to the operator or USFS, then the NAHC would be requested to mediate the problem.
Native American Concerns
"NEPA_Resource_Analysis" is not in the list of possible values (Not Present, Present, Not Affected, Present, Potentially Affected, Not Indicated) for this property.

American Indian groups use areas within the Medicine Lake Highlands for ceremonial and spiritual purposes and for periodically gathering natural resources.

 
CloseCPN shall provide at least 30 days notice to concerned tribes prior to beginning activities for the proposed project. The notice to the tribes shall include the specific location, date of commencement, and expected schedule and duration of the project activities and phases.

This notice may be given prior to a decision on the project.

CPN shall designate an authorized representative who may be contacted by tribal members during the proposed well drilling activities to determine activity schedules; this would reduce the potential for interference with American Indian activities in the project area during project activities. The CPN representative’s name and telephone number shall be provided prior to the commencement of the proposed pad construction, well drilling, and well testing activities.

If requested by tribal members or agencies, CPN shall meet with American Indians to determine methods to minimize conflicts with ceremonial activities. CPN shall implement additional measures to reduce conflicts identified by tribal members. Measures may include installing additional noise attenuation materials (such as hay bales or other sound absorbing materials), revising schedules, or reducing testing times to the minimum required to gather reservoir data (as determined by the BLM).
Wildlife Resources
"NEPA_Resource_Analysis" is not in the list of possible values (Not Present, Present, Not Affected, Present, Potentially Affected, Not Indicated) for this property.

The construction of the well pad sites would involve the removal of small amounts of potential wildlife habitat and vegetation.

 
CloseSnag Habitat: Prior to proposed drill site construction, the proposed drill site locations would be inspected to identify mature trees (greater than 14 inches diameter at breast height (dbh) and snags, and the pad design and/or access road routes would be modified, to the extent practical, to minimize clearing of mature trees or removal of large snags. Drill pads would be constructed to avoid as many snags and seed trees as possible.

Marten Habitat: A qualified biologist shall conduct a field visit, prior to project commencement or when snow clears, to verify that biological conditions have not changed from conditions identified in previous surveys. Specifically, the biologist shall check for marten dens within 250 ft of existing or proposed well pads. If new marten dens are identified, the CPN shall consult with the USFS biologist to define measures to ensure no significant effects would occur (such as the measures outlined in Mitigation Measure 4.5-8b).

In order to minimize the potential impact to martens using den sites in the well pad area, all proposed facility locations shall be checked by a qualified biologist for log piles, hollow logs, and other suitable denning structures at least one month before construction and once again immediately prior to construction. Any log piles, felled and bucked hollow logs, or other potentially suitable marten denning structures which exist on a drill site would be disassembled or removed slowly and carefully under the supervision of a qualified biologist. If marten are detected, activity shall cease to allow the animal to escape safely. The log piles, hollow logs, or other structures would be reassembled at the periphery of the drill site to allow for use as potential dens.

The CPN shall retain as many tree snags as possible during construction to provide denning and loafing areas for the American marten to reduce the effect on this species. Logs from construction shall be piled. Piles may be of various sizes and shapes and may be placed at any convenient locations throughout the area in accordance with NFMP and LRMP standards and guidelines for downed logs. Coarse woody debris that is already on the ground shall be retained and protected from disturbance during logging and other construction activities that might destroy the integrity of the substrate.

At least one day immediately prior to construction of each drill site, low-level intrusive disturbance (e.g., individuals camping at the site) would be conducted on the drill site in an effort to stimulate any marten denning on or near the drill site to vacate the area prior to the drill site construction activities.

Bat habitat: The Project CPN shall survey for roosting bats in accordance with the draft bat roost survey protocol provided in the NFMP, and preferred bat roosting habitat according to the project POO. Surveys shall be conducted within the footprints of all proposed facilities (i.e., well pads, access and maintenance roads) and for a distance of 250 feet surrounding the facilities. If cave roosting bats are located, a site-specific hat roost management plan shall be prepared for USFS approval and implemented by the CPN. The entire cave system(s) shall be safeguarded, including, but not limited to, cave entrances, skylights, collapsed areas of the cave system(s), and interconnected passages that occur beneath the surface of the earth. Bat maternity colonies, day roosts, hibernacula, and night roosts would be protected. The removal of snags and defective trees with dbh of 18 inches or more will be avoided to the greatest extent possible during construction of project facilities.

If caves are located during the bat roost surveys, the caves shall be assessed as to their being "significant" as defined by the Federal Cave Resources Protection Act of 1988, regardless of bat occupancy. If deemed signficant, these resources shall be protected according to the guidelines outlined in the Act.
Special Status Species
"NEPA_Resource_Analysis" is not in the list of possible values (Not Present, Present, Not Affected, Present, Potentially Affected, Not Indicated) for this property.

The proposed project construction could have a substantial adverse effect, either directly or through construction-related habitat modifications, on certain special status species.

 
CloseCalifornia Pinefoot, Liddon’s Sedge, and Sugar Stick: As identified in the POO, CPN shall retain a botanical resources consultant to survey vegetation communities most likely to serve as potential California pinefoot, Liddon’s sedge, and sugar stick habitat prior site-specific ground

disturbing activities. If the consultant identifies plants or colonies, they will be marked and avoided during clearing and construction activities.

Project activities in the vicinity of populations of California pinefoot, Liddon’s sedge, and sugar stick shall be conducted so that both the plants of this species and their microhabitat are preserved. The integrity of the crowns and root systems of the plants, and of the living host trees upon which the mycotrophic sugar stick grows, shall be maintained during on-site construction activities.

CPN shall maintain an adequate supply of coarse woody debris in the vicinity of sugar stick populations, in accordance with the objectives for management of this species identified in "Draft Management Recommendations for Sugar Stick" (Wogen 1996). CPN shall maintain appropriate habitat requirements for the California pinefoot and Liddon’s sedge, if present, in accordance with approved management objectives for the species.

Boggs Lake Hedge-hyssop:A vegetation survey of the sumps shall be conducted as outlined in the POO. If Boggs lake hedge-hyssop plants are present at any Telephone Flat well sites or sumps, they shall be avoided to the maximum extent possible during on-site construction and pumping activities. Additionally, seed shall be collected from all individual hedge-hyssops prior to ground disturbing activities in the sump area or the discharge of hot fluids to the sump. Seed shall be collected from the current year plants after they are fully mature.

Ash Penstemon: Individuals of ash penstemon present on well pad 87-13 would not be lost or adversely impacted by the project.

Hall's Sedge: After vegetation surveys have been conducted as part of the project POO, any identified individuals or colonies of Hall's sedge shall be marked and avoided during site construction and operational activities.

Colonies of Hall's sedge that cannot be avoided shall be salvaged and planted on recently constructed, low-use slopes. Salvaging shall take place in the fall season when the plants have completed their seed set and full measure of their annual growth.

Ingestion of Toxins- Sensitive Wildlife Species: Geothermal fluid ponded in the well pad sumps shall be removed from the sumps within 60 days of discharge to preclude insects from colonizing spent geothermal fluid or toxins accumulating in the sump waters.

Animal Activity: Drilling and testing activities shall not be conducted at well pads or proposed well pads within 0.25 miles of any animal denning sites or during the species’ reproductive or breeding period, in conformance with the Forest-wide Standards and Guidelines (USFS 1991).

Hot Sump Fluids: Netting or other protective measures shall be constructed over the fluid storage basins at each of the deep test well sites during periods when geothermal fluid is stored in the basins to discourage bats and other wildlife from attempting to contact or drink from the sump basins. If netting is used, the netting material and mesh size will be sufficient to prevent birds or bats from contacting the contents of the sump but not to trap or harm these animals in the netting itself.
Vegetation
"NEPA_Resource_Analysis" is not in the list of possible values (Not Present, Present, Not Affected, Present, Potentially Affected, Not Indicated) for this property.

Small amounts of vegetation in the immediate drill site areas would be lost. Vegetation will be cleared during the widening and construction of the proposed well sites and associated sumps in the area.

   
Invasive, Nonnative Species
"NEPA_Resource_Analysis" is not in the list of possible values (Not Present, Present, Not Affected, Present, Potentially Affected, Not Indicated) for this property.

Noxious weeds are not present in the disturbed areas of the project sites; however, projectassociated surface disturbance could create a favorable environment , for introducing noxious weeds to the project areas.

 
CloseCPN shall develop and implement a program for weed monitoring and control satisfactory to the USFS following completion of construction to control any spread of noxious weeds that could occur. CPN shall be responsible for thoroughly washing all heavy equipment prior to moving the equipment into the Medicine Lake Highlands. Cars and trucks with the potential to transport noxious weeds or seeds, such as those carrying debris, mud, or soil from sites with existing weeds, will be washed as appropriate.
Migratory Birds
"NEPA_Resource_Analysis" is not in the list of possible values (Not Present, Present, Not Affected, Present, Potentially Affected, Not Indicated) for this property.

 

 
CloseNorthern Goshawk Habitat: As identified in the project POO, pre-construction surveys for new goshawk nests at and near (within 0.25 miles) the well pad sites at Telephone Flat shall be conducted by a qualified biologist. Additionally, and in all project areas, the biologist, in consultation with a USFS biologist, shall conduct a field visit, prior to project commencement or when snow clears, to verify that biological conditions have not changed from conditions identified in previous site surveys. Specifically, the biologist shall check for new goshawk nests and identify suitable habitat within 0.5 mi of the existing well pads, using appropriate agency protocols. If nests are found within 0.5 miles of well pads, seasonal drilling restrictions may be enforced by the USFS to avoid impacts to nesting goshawks. Activities could be restricted from March 1 to August 31 if a goshawk nest is located less than 0.5 miles from the pad. If new goshawk nests are identified, CPN shall consult with the USFS biologist to define any other measures to ensure no significant effects would occur from project activities.

All field employees and personnel working at the drill sites would be educated on the importance of isolating the goshawk nest stand from noise and unnecessary human activity, and all but specifically authorized and necessary personnel would be prohibited from conducting any field activities within 0.5 mile of the goshawk nest stand unless authorized by the USFS.

Cooper’s Hawk and Golden Eagle Habitat: A consulting biologist, in concert with the USFS biologist, shall visually survey within a 0.5-mile radius of the proposed site to ensure no other listed raptor species nesting is taking place. If nests are found within 0.5 miles of well pads, seasonal drilling restrictions may be enforced by the USFS to avoid impacts to nesting raptors. Activities could be seasonally restricted if a raptor nest is located less than 0.5 miles from the pad. If new nests are identified, CPN shall consult with the USFS biologist to define any other measures to ensure that no significant effects would occur from project activities.

Raptor Activity: Drilling and testing activities shall not be conducted at well pads or proposed well pads within 0.5 miles of any raptor nest sites, during the raptor species’ reproductive period, or during periods when the nest is active, in conformance

with the Forest-wide Standards and Guidelines (USFS 1991).
Air Quality
"NEPA_Resource_Analysis" is not in the list of possible values (Not Present, Present, Not Affected, Present, Potentially Affected, Not Indicated) for this property.

Typical air quality impacts of geothermal exploration are associated with short-term construction dust, emissions from the operation of diesel-fueled engines, and release of geothermal fluids to the atmosphere during well testing.

 
CloseShort-term effects to air quality in the immediate vicinity of the rotary drilling operations can be anticipated from the large diesel engines that are required t run the equipment. The diesel engines will be permitted by he Siskiyou County Air Pollution Control District (SCAPCD) or the California Air Resources Board and mitigated as outlined in the Authority to Construct permits.

Fugitive dust released from road and pad construction activities will also be short terms and isolated to those areas. Dust can be controlled by wetting the areas with water trucks as outlined in the previous EA.

Hydrogen sulfide (H2S) gas may be constrained in the geothermal fluid. It would remain entrained in the drilling mud and be neutralized by the pH of the mud system during drilling operations. The mud logger will monitor the fluids produced and drilling rig alarms on the floor are triggered at 10 ppm at which time the crew would be evacuated and the well shut-in until the safety of the areas was secure. The air quality and mitigation required during drilling and flow tests has also been fully evaluated by the previous EA and the EIR/EIS. The SCAPCD will be evaluating the project to ensure that no federal or state ambient air quality standards are exceeded. Hydrogen Sulfide abatement may or may not be needed depending on the emissions expected at a given will and the vicinity to near by receptors.
Noise
"NEPA_Resource_Analysis" is not in the list of possible values (Not Present, Present, Not Affected, Present, Potentially Affected, Not Indicated) for this property.

Estimates of noise levels from construction of a typical well pad assumed an equipment assemblage which included one large bulldozer, one scraper, a large diesel truck, and one cement truck or crane.

 
CloseMuffler systems shall be used on all heavy equipment during construction, drilling, and testing activities.

If air drilling is conducted, a cyclonic separator/muffler would be employed to reduce drilling noise.

Pad site and access road construction activities would be limited to daytime hours (typically 7:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m.) to minimize nighttime noise impacts.
Visual Resources
"NEPA_Resource_Analysis" is not in the list of possible values (Not Present, Present, Not Affected, Present, Potentially Affected, Not Indicated) for this property.

 

 
CloseTo the extent practical, all lights used to illuminate drill sites shall be shielded from identified vantage points to reduce the visual impacts from lighted drill sites during well drilling and flow-testing activities. Well venting shall be conducted to minimize the size and visibility of steam plumes and will include directing geothermal fluids from the wellhead to a portable silencer, allowing for minimization of particulate matter.
Lands and Realty
"NEPA_Resource_Analysis" is not in the list of possible values (Not Present, Present, Not Affected, Present, Potentially Affected, Not Indicated) for this property.

The proposed action would not be expected to conflict with existing land uses in the vicinity.

   
Recreation
"NEPA_Resource_Analysis" is not in the list of possible values (Not Present, Present, Not Affected, Present, Potentially Affected, Not Indicated) for this property.

Due to the short duration of the activities, and the limited visibility of the proposed well sites, the proposed action would not have a significant impact on recreation in the area.

 
CloseTo minimize impacts to winter recreation users, snow plowing would be limited to the following routes:

• 18-28 (previously permitted location): 15 road to 44N01, to 44N64 to 44N54 to well site • 85-33: 15 road to 44N01, to 44N64 to 44N54 west to 77 and east to well site • 64-27: 15 road to 44N01, to 44N64 to 44N54 east to 49 to well site

To minimize impacts to winter recreational users on Forest Route 49, an alternative snowmobile route would be maintained for the 0.2 miles of Route 49 which would be plowed and used by project-related vehicles. Ramps shall be constructed and warning signs erected at both ends of the plowed section of Forest Route 49. Additionally, since 64-27 is the only well site that requires access via Forest Route 49, no new drilling operations will commence at site 64-27 after October 15th and before April 30th.
Access and Transportation
"NEPA_Resource_Analysis" is not in the list of possible values (Not Present, Present, Not Affected, Present, Potentially Affected, Not Indicated) for this property.

The proposed project would not substantially increase traffic on regional roadways or cause roadway capacities to be exceeded.

 
CloseSpecial use permits would be obtained from the Goosenest and Doublehead USFS district offices prior to the commencement of operations. All road improvements would be limited to minimum width requirements for single lane traffic and would meet USFS standard construction requirements. No import of road construction materials is expected to be necessary, because the native road materials (soils) in the area appear adequate.
Public Health and Safety
"NEPA_Resource_Analysis" is not in the list of possible values (Not Present, Present, Not Affected, Present, Potentially Affected, Not Indicated) for this property.

Project impacts on health and safety related to spills of hazardous materials and exposure of receptors to hazardous substances would be less than significant with the implementation of measures proposed by CPN and the proposed mitigation measures.

 
CloseCPN has proposed a number of measures as part of the plan of operations to reduce the risk of hazards. Implementation of these measures as described above would result in less than significant impacts related to human health and safety. No additional measures are needed to reduce effects to less than significant levels.

Calpine will limit access to the drill sites where unrestricted public access could interfere with operations and constitute a public health and safety hazard. Security will be contracted if necessary.

The drill sites will be occupied 24-hours/day by Calpine personnel or contractors during both drilling and testing operations. Federal and CalOSHA regulations will be strictly enforces at these constructions sires, which requires a minimum of a hardhat, eye protection, and steel-toed boots.

Portable toilets will be on-site for workers as well as bottled water. A contractor who will maintain them during their use and haul them off when work has been completed will bring in the toilets.

Safety tailboards will be held evry morning at both construction and drilling locations. Warning and safety signs will be posted at the entrannce to all locations.
Social Values
"NEPA_Resource_Analysis" is not in the list of possible values (Not Present, Present, Not Affected, Present, Potentially Affected, Not Indicated) for this property.

 

   
Economic Values
"NEPA_Resource_Analysis" is not in the list of possible values (Not Present, Present, Not Affected, Present, Potentially Affected, Not Indicated) for this property.

During drill site and access road construction or improvement local contractors would be utilized. It is estimated that up to 4 to 6 local construction contractor employees would be employed over all, or part, of the six-month period(s) when field activities are in progress.

   
Environmental Justice
"NEPA_Resource_Analysis" is not in the list of possible values (Not Present, Present, Not Affected, Present, Potentially Affected, Not Indicated) for this property.

The proposed project would be located within the Klamath and Modoc National Forests, and would not directly affect the environmental or human health conditions of any American Indian, or other minority or low-income residential communities.

   
Fire Resources
"NEPA_Resource_Analysis" is not in the list of possible values (Not Present, Present, Not Affected, Present, Potentially Affected, Not Indicated) for this property.

 

 
CloseTo facilitate emergency response to fires which could result from proposed activities, the location of selected drill and testing sites, access roads, and the timing of proposed geothermal exploration operations would be provided to the Goosenest District of the Klamath National Forest, the Doublehead Ranger District of the Modoc National Forest, and the National Park Service administration at the Lava Beds National Monument immediately prior to field activities to alert them to the areas of potential increased fire risk. Calpine will have all equipment on site as outlined in the attached USFS fire plan for the Klamath National Forest.
Water Quantity
"NEPA_Resource_Analysis" is not in the list of possible values (Not Present, Present, Not Affected, Present, Potentially Affected, Not Indicated) for this property.

The proposed project design and applicable regulations define measures to protect surface water and groundwater quality.

CloseMitigation 4.3-1: Calpine shall inspect and promptly repair each sump, and pipeline after a seismic event of magnitude 5.0 or greater.
CloseBLM GRO #2 outlines the casing and well completion requirements of the BLM that will protect ground water from geothermal resources if present. Additionally the Geothermal Drilling Permit will outline any further requirements needed. The sums will be lines with a materials to meet a permeability standard of no less than 1x10to the -6 cm/sec to prevent infiltration of the sump fluids into shallow ground water in accordance with Regional Water Quality Control Board requirements.