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Notice

Saltville Gas Storage Company, L.L.C.; Notice of Availability of the Environmental Assessment for the Proposed Saltville Storage Project

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Information about this document as published in the Federal Register.

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Start Preamble March 5, 2004.

The staff of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC or Commission) has prepared an environmental assessment (EA) on the natural gas pipeline facilities proposed by Saltville Gas Storage Company, L.L.C. (Saltville) in the above-referenced docket. The EA was prepared to satisfy the requirements of the National Environmental Policy Act. The staff concludes that approval of the proposed project, with appropriate mitigating measures, would not constitute a major Federal action significantly affecting the quality of the human environment.

Saltville is currently developing a new 8.2 billion cubic foot, underground natural gas storage facility using existing salt caverns that were previously authorized for construction and operation by the Virginia State Corporation Commission in Smyth and Washington Counties, Virginia. Saltville has received all necessary state regulatory approvals to construct and operate the storage facility. See Appendix 1 for a list of the facilities and their construction status. The EA focuses its analysis on the facilities that still need to be constructed, on restoration of the areas previously disturbed or currently being disturbed by on-going construction activities, and on the operation of the existing facilities.

The purpose of the proposed storage field would be to provide about 8.2 billion cubic feet of working gas capacity with an estimated maximum withdrawal rate of 550,000 thousand cubic feet per day (Mcfd) of gas and an estimated maximum injection rate of 220,000 Mcfd. The storage field is interconnected with the transmission systems of Virginia Gas Pipeline Company, an intrastate company, and East Tennessee Natural Gas Company, an interstate company.

The EA has been placed in the public files of the FERC. A limited number of copies of the EA are available for distribution and public inspection at: Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, Public Reference Room, 888 First Street, NE., Room 2A, Washington, DC 20426, (202) 502-8371.

Copies of the EA have been mailed to Federal, State and local agencies, and stakeholders that responded to our December 15, 2003, Notice of Intent to prepare an Environmental Assessment for the Proposed Saltville Storage Project and Request for Comments on Environmental Issues, and parties to this proceeding.

Any person wishing to comment on the EA may do so. To ensure consideration prior to a Commission decision on the proposal, it is important that we receive your comments before the date specified below. Please carefully follow these instructions to ensure that your comments are received in time and properly recorded:

  • Send an original and two copies of your comments to: Magalie R. Salas, Secretary, Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, 888 First St., NE., Room 1A, Washington, DC 20426;
  • Label one copy of the comments for the attention of the Gas Branch 2, PJ11.2.
  • Reference Docket No. CP04-13-000; and
  • Mail your comments so that they will be received in Washington, DC on or before April 5, 2004.

Please note that we are continuing to experience delays in mail deliveries from the U.S. Postal Service. As a result, we will include all comments that we receive within a reasonable time frame in our environmental analysis of this project. However, the Commission strongly encourages electronic filing of any comments or interventions or protests to this proceeding. See 18 CFR 385.2001(a)(1)(iii) and the instructions on the Commission's Web site at http://www.ferc.gov under the “e-Filing” link and the link to the User's Guide. Before you can file comments you will need to create a free account which can be created by clicking on “Sign-up.”

Comments will be considered by the Commission but will not serve to make the commentor a party to the proceeding. Any person seeking to become a party to the proceeding must file a motion to intervene pursuant to Rule 214 of the Commission's Rules of Practice and Procedures (18 CFR 385.214).[1] Only intervenors have the right to seek rehearing of the Commission's decision.

Affected landowners and parties with environmental concerns may be granted intervenor status upon showing good cause by stating that they have a clear and direct interest in this proceeding which would not be adequately represented by any other parties. You do not need intervenor status to have your comments considered.

Additional information about the project is available from the Commission's Office of External Affairs, at 1-866-208-FERC (1-866-208-3372) or on the FERC Internet Web site (www.ferc.gov) using the eLibrary link. Click on the eLibrary link, click on “General Search” and enter the docket number excluding the last three digits in the Docket Number field. Be sure you have selected an appropriate date range. For assistance with eLibrary, the eLibrary helpline can be reached at 1-866-208-3676, TTY (202) 502-8659 or at FERCOnlineSupport@ferc.gov. The eLibrary link on the FERC Internet Web site also provides access to the texts of formal documents issued by the Commission, such as orders, notices, and rulemakings.

In addition, the Commission now offers a free service called eSubscription which allows you to keep track of all formal issuances and submittals in specific dockets. This can reduce the amount of time you spend researching proceedings by automatically providing Start Printed Page 11616you with notification of these filings, document summaries and direct links to the documents. Go to www.ferc.gov, click on “eSubscription” and then click on “Sign-up.”

Start Signature

Magalie R. Salas,

Secretary.

End Signature End Preamble

Footnotes

1.  Interventions may also be filed electronically via the Internet in lieu of paper. See the previous discussion on filing comments electronically.

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[FR Doc. E4-546 Filed 3-10-04; 8:45 am]

BILLING CODE 6717-01-P