TO WHOM IT MAY CONCERN: The Jacksonville District of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (Corps) has received an application for a Department of the Army permit pursuant to Section 10 of the Rivers and Harbors Act of 1899 (33 U.S.C. §403) and Section 103 of the Marine Protection, Research and Sanctuaries Act (MPRSA) of 1972, as described below:
APPLICANT: Mr. Pierre E. Bredin
Total Petroleum Puerto Rico, Corp.
City View Plaza, Tower 1, # 48
Road PR-165, Suite 803
Guaynabo, Puerto Rico 00968
WATERWAY AND LOCATION: The project would affect waters of the United States associated with the San Juan Bay and the Atlantic Ocean. The project site is located at berthing areas of Cataño Oil Dock, Municipality of Guaynabo, Puerto Rico. The proposed ocean disposal site is at the San Juan Harbor ocean dredged material disposal site (ODMDS).
Directions to the site are as follows: From San Juan, take Expressway PR-22 West, exist right to PR-165, then turn right on to PR-28 and continue to the U.S. Army Terminal at km. 0.1. The project site is located west of the PREPA’s San Juan Thermoelectric Plant.
APPROXIMATE CENTRAL COORDINATES:
Longitude - 66.10746°
COORDINATES of San Juan Harbor ODMDS:
Overall: To provide maintenance dredging to restore the required depth for the safe maneuvering of ships approaching and berthing at the Cataño Oil Dock.
EXISTING CONDITIONS: The San Juan Bay is an active port area. The Cataño Oil Dock is used by carrier vessels and tankers to supply to the island of Puerto Rico petroleum products (i.e. gas, diesel, propane gas). The proposed area has been dredged several times in the past. The last maintenance dredging at the proposed site was performed in February 2012 where approximately 4,500 cubic yards of sediments were dredged. The existing depths fluctuate between 28 feet and 40 feet. The Environmental Sensitivity Index Map describes the existing shoreline habitat as sheltered, solid man-made structures. In addition, based on available information, no seagrass or reefs are present at the project site. Sediments collected near this dock are composed predominantly of clay (62.5%), and silt (36.8%). Minor amount of sands were found (0.70%). No gravel was found.
PROPOSED WORK: The applicant seeks authorization to perform maintenance dredging of approximately 15,750 cubic yards of sediments in approximately 0.85 acres of navigable waters of the United States located to the east, west and north side of the existing Cataño Oil Dock. The proposed dredge is located within an area of approximately 484 feet long by 39 feet wide at both sides of the dock. The method of dredging will be clamshell. The proposed dredging depth is -40 feet and -2 feet allowable overdepth. The dredged material will be transported to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) designated San Juan Harbor ODMDS.
BIOLOGICAL AND CHEMICAL TESTING: Sampling and testing of the material to be dredged were conducted in February and March 2015. The results of the physical, chemical and toxicological analyses of the samples collected are included on the Final Report San Juan Harbor Section 103 Sediment Testing and Analysis dated December 2015. Copies of this report documenting the results of these analyses are available upon request. The EPA will evaluate the results and assess the suitability of the dredged material from the proposed areas of Cataño Oil Dock for disposal at the San Juan Harbor ODMDS.
The Corps has determined the permit area has been extensively modified by previous work and there is little likelihood a historic property may be affected.
The Corps has determined the proposed project may affect, but is not likely to adversely affect the Green sea turtles (Chelonia mydas), Hawksbill sea turtles (Eretmochelys imbricata) and the Antillean Manatee (Trichechus manatus manatus) and it would not affect their designated critical habitat. The Corps has determined the proposal would have no effect on listed threatened or endangered coral species and the Nassau grouper (Epinephelus striatus) and their designated critical habitat. The Corps will request U.S. Fish and Wildlife/National Marine Fisheries Service concurrence with this determination pursuant to Section 7 of the Endangered Species Act.
ESSENTIAL FISH HABITAT (EFH):
This notice initiates consultation with the National Marine Fisheries Service on EFH as required by the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act 1996. Our initial determination is that the proposed action would not have a substantial adverse impact on EFH or Federally managed fisheries in the Caribbean. Our final determination relative to project impacts and the need for mitigation measures is subject to review by and coordination with the National Marine Fisheries Service.
NOTE: This public notice is being issued based on information furnished by the applicant. This information has not been verified or evaluated to ensure compliance with laws and regulation governing the regulatory program.
AUTHORIZATION FROM OTHER AGENCIES: A Coastal Zone Federal Consistency Certificate with the Puerto Rico Coastal Zone Management Plan is required from the Puerto Rico Planning Board.
COMMENTS regarding the potential authorization of the work proposed should be submitted in writing to the attention of the District Engineer through the Antilles Permit Section, Fundación Angel Ramos, Annex BLDG., Suite 202, 383 F. D. Roosevelt Ave., San Juan, Puerto Rico 00918 within 20 days from the date of this notice.
The decision whether to issue or deny this permit application will be based on the information received from this public notice and the evaluation of the probable impact to the associated wetlands. This is based on an analysis of the applicant's avoidance and minimization efforts for the project, as well as the compensatory mitigation proposed.
QUESTIONS concerning this application should be directed to the project manager, Ms. Carmen Gisela Román, in writing at the Antilles Permits Section, Fundación Angel Ramos, Annex BLDG., Suite 202, 383 F. D. Roosevelt Ave., San Juan, Puerto Rico 00918; by electronic mail at firstname.lastname@example.org or by telephone at (787)729-6637.
IMPACT ON NATURAL RESOURCES: Coordination with U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the National Marine Fisheries Services, and other Federal, State, and local agencies, environmental groups, and concerned citizens generally yields pertinent environmental information that is instrumental in determining the impact the proposed action will have on the natural resources of the area.
EVALUATION: The decision whether to issue a permit will be based on an evaluation of the probable impact including cumulative impacts of the proposed activity on the public interest. That decision will reflect the national concern for both protection and utilization of important resources. The benefits, which reasonably may be expected to accrue from the proposal, must be balanced against its reasonably foreseeable detriments. All factors which may be relevant to the proposal will be considered including cumulative impacts thereof; among these are conservation, economics, esthetics, general environmental concerns, wetlands, historical properties, fish and wildlife values, flood hazards, floodplain values, land use, navigation, shoreline erosion and accretion, recreation, water supply and conservation, water quality, energy needs, safety, food, and fiber production, mineral needs, considerations of property ownership, and in general, the needs and welfare of the people. Evaluation of the impact of the activity on the public interest will also include application of the guidelines promulgated by the Administrator, EPA, under authority of Section 404(b) of the Clean Water Act or the criteria established under authority of Section 102(a) of the Marine Protection Research and Sanctuaries Act of 1972. A permit will be granted unless its issuance is found to be contrary to the public interest.
The US Army Corps of Engineers (Corps) is soliciting comments from the public; Federal, State, and local agencies and officials; Indian Tribes; and other Interested parties in order to consider and evaluate the impacts of this proposed activity. Any comments received will be considered by the Corps to determine whether to issue, modify, condition, or deny a permit for this proposal. To make this determination, comments are used to assess impacts to endangered species, historic properties, water quality, general environmental effects, and the other public interest factors listed above. Comments are also used to determine the need for a public hearing and to determine the overall public interest of the proposed activity.
COASTAL ZONE MANAGEMENT CONSISTENCY: In Florida, the State approval constitutes compliance with the approved Coastal Zone Management Plan. In Puerto Rico, a Coastal Zone Management Consistency Concurrence is required from the Puerto Rico Planning Board. In the Virgin Islands, the Department of Planning and Natural Resources permit constitutes compliance with the Coastal Zone Management Plan.
REQUEST FOR PUBLIC HEARING: Any person may request a public hearing. The request must be submitted in writing to the District Engineer within the designated comment period of the notice and must state the specific reasons for requesting the public hearing.