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Notice

Energy Northwest; Notice of Intent To File License Application, Filing of Pre-Application Document, Commencement of Licensing Proceeding, Scoping Meetings and Study Request Workshop, Solicitation of Comments on the Pad and Scoping Document, and Identification of Issues and Associated Study Requests

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Start Preamble January 12, 2005.

a. Type of Filing: Notice of intent to file license application for a new license and pre-application document; commencing licensing proceeding.

b. Project No.: 2244-012.

c. Dated Filed: November 12, 2004.

d. Submitted by: Energy Northwest.

e. Name of Project: Packwood Lake Hydroelectric Project.

f. Location: Packwood Lake Hydroelectric Project is located on Lake Creek and the Cowlitz River in Lewis County, Washington. The project occupies 503.25 acres of United States lands under the jurisdiction of the U.S. Forest Service.

g. Filed Pursuant to: 18 CFR part 5 of the Commission's Regulations.

h. Potential Applicant Contact: Laura Schinnell, Licensing Project Manager, Mail Drop 1030, Energy Northwest, P.O. Box 968, Richland, WA, 99352, (509) 372-5123.Start Printed Page 3016

i. FERC Contact: Kenneth Hogan (202) 502-8434 or via e-mail at Kenneth.hogan@ferc.gov.

j. We are asking federal, state, local, and tribal agencies with jurisdiction and/or special expertise with respect to environmental issues to cooperate with us in the preparation of the environmental document. Agencies who would like to request cooperating status should follow the instructions for filing comments described in paragraph o below.

k. With this notice, we are initiating informal consultation with: (a) The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and/or NOAA Fisheries under section 7 of the Endangered Species Act and the joint agency regulations thereunder at 50 CFR part 402 and (b) the State Historic Preservation Officer, as required by section 106, National Historical Preservation Act, and the implementing regulations of the Advisory Council on Historic Preservation at 36 CFR 800.2.

l. On March 10, 2004 and November 16, 2004, respectively, we designated Energy Northwest as the Commission's non-federal representative for carrying out informal consultation, pursuant to section 7 of the Endangered Species Act and section 106 of the National Historic Preservation Act.

m. Energy Northwest filed a Pre-Application Document (PAD); including a proposed process plan and schedule with the Commission, pursuant to 18 CFR 5.6 of the Commission's regulations.

n. Copies of the PAD and Scoping Document 1 (SD1) are available for review at the Commission in the Public Reference Room or may be viewed on the Commission's Web site (http://www.ferc.gov), using the “eLibrary” link. Enter the docket number, excluding the last three digits in the docket number field to access the document. For assistance, contact FERC Online Support at FERCOnlineSupport@ferc.gov or toll free at 1-866-208-3676, of for TTY, (202) 502-8659. A copy is also available for inspection and reproduction at the address in paragraph h.

Register online at http://ferc.gov/​esubscribenow.htm to be notified via e-mail of new filing and issuances related to this or other pending projects. For assistance, contact FERC Online Support.

o. With this notice, we are soliciting comments on the PAD and SD1 as well as study requests. All comments on the PAD and SD1, and study requests should be sent to the address above in paragraph h. In addition, all comments on the PAD and SD1, study requests, requests for cooperating agency status, and all communications to Commission staff related to the merits of the potential application (original and eight copies) must be filed with the Commission at the following address: Magalie R. Salas, Secretary, Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, 888 First Street, NE., Washington, DC 20426. All filings with the Commission must include on the first page, the project name (Packwood Lake Hydroelectric Project) and number (P-2244-012), and bear the heading “Comments on Pre-Application Document,” “Study Requests,” “Comments on Scoping Document 1,” “Request for Cooperating Agency Status,” or “Communications to and from Commission Staff.” Any individual or entity interested in submitting study requests, commenting on the PAD or SD1, and any agency requesting cooperating status must do so by March 12, 2005.

Comments on the PAD and SD1, study requests, requests for cooperating agency status, and other permissible forms of communications with the Commission may be filed electronically via the Internet in lieu of paper. The Commission strongly encourages electronic filings. See 18 CFR 385.2001(a)(1)(iii) and the instructions on the Commission's Web site (http://www.ferc.gov) under the “e-filing” link.

p. At this time, Commission staff intends to prepare an Environmental Assessment for the project, in accordance with the National Environmental Policy Act. However, there is the possibility that an Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) will be required. Nevertheless, this meeting will satisfy the NEPA scoping requirements, irrespective of whether an EA or EIS is issued by the Commission.

Scoping Meetings

We will hold two scoping meetings at the times and places noted below. The daytime meeting will focus on resource agency, Indian tribes, and non-governmental organization concerns, while the evening meeting is primarily for receiving input from the public. We invite all interested individuals, organizations, and agencies to attend one or both of the meetings, and to assist staff in identifying particular study needs, as well as the scope of environmental issues to be addressed in the environmental document. The times and locations of these meetings are as follows:

Daytime Scoping Meeting

Date and Time: Thursday, February 3, 2005, 1 p.m. (PST).

Location: Packwood Lake Community Center, 12935 U.S. Highway 12, Packwood, Washington.

Evening Scoping Meeting

Date and Time: Thursday, February 3, 2005, 7 p.m. (PST).

Location: Packwood Lake Community Center, 12935 U.S. Highway 12, Packwood, Washington.

For Directions: Please call Laura Schinnell at (509) 372-5123.

Scoping Document 1 (SD1), which outlines the subject areas to be addressed in the environmental document, has been mailed to the individuals and entities on the Commission's mailing list. Copies of SD1 will be available at the scoping meetings, or may be viewed on the Web at http://www.ferc.gov, using the “eLibrary” link. Follow the directions for accessing information in paragraph n. Depending on the extent of comments received, a Scoping Document 2 (SD2) may or may not be issued.

Site Visit

A site visit is typically held in conjunction with the scoping meeting. However, anticipating that access to some project facilities would be limited by winter weather, Energy Northwest hosted a project site visit in August 2004. The site visit was noticed by the Commission on July 13, 2004 and attended by Commission staff on August 27, 2004. For these reasons, the Commission will not host its own site visit in conjunction with its NEPA scoping meeting.

Scoping Meeting Objectives

At the scoping meetings, staff will: (1) Present the proposed list of issues to be addressed in the EA; (2) review and discuss existing conditions and resource agency management objectives; (3) review and discuss existing information and identify preliminary information and study needs; (4) review and discuss the process plan and schedule for pre-filing activity that incorporates the time frames provided for in part 5 of the Commission's regulations and, to the extent possible, maximizes coordination of federal, state, and tribal permitting and certification processes; and (5) discuss requests by any federal or state agency or Indian tribe acting as a cooperating agency for development of an environmental document.

Meeting participants should come prepared to discuss their issues and/or concerns. Please review the Pre-Application Document in preparation for the scoping meetings. Directions on how to obtain a copy of the PAD and Start Printed Page 3017SD1 are included in item n. of this document.

Scoping Meeting Procedures

The scoping meetings will be recorded by a stenographer and will become part of the formal Commission record on the project.

Study Request and Process Plan Workshop

To assist parties in the development of their study requests (pertaining to format and the study criteria outlined in the Commission's regulation 18 CFR 5.8), and further development of the project's Process Plan we will be hosting a workshop on February 2, 2005, at the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service's Sawyer Hall at 510 Desmond Drive SE., Lacey, Washington. The workshop will begin at 9 a.m. (PST). For directions, please contact Laura Schinnell at (509) 372-5123.

Start Signature

Magalie R. Salas,

Secretary.

End Signature End Preamble

[FR Doc. E5-185 Filed 1-18-05; 8:45 am]

BILLING CODE 6717-01-P