LARIMER COUNTY ENVIRONMENTAL AND SCIENCE ADVISORY BOARD (ESAB)

 MEETING MINUTES

June 23, 2015

 

 

Members In Attendance:

 

Guests:

Richard Alper

 

Jim Gerek

Jeremy Deuto

 

 

Michael Jones

 

Commissioner:

Kimberly Karish

 

Lew Gaiter

Evelyn King

 

 

Ryan McShane

 

Staff :

Joseph Wilson

 

Doug Ryan

 

Introduction of Members and Guests:

Those in attendance introduced themselves.  The Advisory Board welcomed Jim Gerek, who has been appointed to the ESAB starting on July 1, 2015. 

 

BCC Liaison Comments:

Commissioner Gaiter addressed the members about the review of the NISP water project EIS.  The Commissioners identified the ESAB as the most appropriate board or commission to review the document.  They are interested in an unbiased scientific review about the project’s design and mitigation measures in order to assure that the project is “done right” and provides adequate environmental protection. 

 

Commissioner Gaiter noted that if the Army Corps issues a permit, the proponents will need to apply for and receive a Larimer County 1041 Permit in order to proceed with construction of components in the County.  Standard for these permits, which deal with “areas and activities of state interest”, are contained in Section 14 of the Larimer County Land Use Code, and were recently amended to include water storage reservoirs.  The basic standards and recent amendments are available at http://larimer.org/planning/planning/LandUse/. Commissioner Gaiter noted that a wide range of issues, including adequacy of recreational opportunities, can be considered under this process.

 

Discussion Item:

NISP EIS Review.  The Advisory Board began its review of the Supplemental Draft Environmental Impact Statement (SDEIS) for the Northern Integrated Supply Project (NISP). 

 

The SDEIS was released by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers on June 19 for a 45 day public comment period ending on August 4.  The purpose of the project is to supply 40,000 acre feet of new municipal water supply annually to 15 providers working cooperatively through the Northern Colorado Water Conservancy District. The County Commissioners have asked the ESAB to review the document and provide comments for their consideration ahead of the review deadline.  The applicant’s preferred alternative includes the construction of Glade Reservoir in Larimer County. 

 

Doug Ryan used a PowerPoint presentation to outline the history of the proposed water project, and the content of previous comments from the County for the original EIS in 2008.  The current SDEIS evaluates four alternatives – including a No Action Alternative.  The SDEIS is available online at http://www.nwo.usace.army.mil/Missions/RegulatoryProgram/Colorado/EISNISP.aspx

 

The members discussed the item in detail, and decided to review selected priority environmental issues in terms for three criteria: fatal flaws or missing data, adequacy to support selection of the best alternative, and appropriateness of the mitigation measures.  Individual members were asked to review select topics and respond by email to the group ahead of the scheduled July 14 meeting.  It is anticipated that final comments to the County Commissioners will be developed at that time.

 

Approval of Previous Minutes:

Minutes from December 2014, February, March, April and May 2015 were approved as amended.

 

ESAB Issue Index:

Doug Ryan will update the Issue Index related to the topics discussed at the meeting.

 

July Meeting Agenda:

Review & Comment on NISP Supplemental Draft EIS

 

Adjourn:

The meeting ended at 9:00 PM