JACKSONVILLE, Fla. (April 4, 2011) – The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Jacksonville District is continuing its thorough review of the Puerto Rico Electric Power Authority’s (PREPA) application for a Department of the Army permit to construct and install a 92-mile natural gas pipeline that traverses the island of Puerto Rico. The Corps is in ongoing consultation with resource agencies and in December 2010 requested additional information from the permit applicant, including information pertaining to the Alternatives Analysis.
PREPA is conducting endangered species and archeological resource surveys. They will provide a draft Biological Assessment and Phase I Archeological Study that, once submitted, will enable the Corps to initiate consultation with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s Fisheries Service, Protected Resource Division and the State Historic Preservation Office. The Corps met with the Federal Highway Administration March 30 to discuss requirements of the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) pertaining to the 22 miles of highway the proposed pipeline would traverse. Corps officials also met with the Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA) and Commonwealth Public Safety Commission (PSC) March 31, to coordinate efforts in the federal review process and clarify the roles, functions and responsibilities of the PHMSA and PSC in the Via Verde project.
After all information is provided, the Corps will evaluate the application in coordination with resource agencies and make a final determination on the permit.
Updates will be posted to the Jacksonville District website throughout the review process.
Release no. 11-24