Link: Pacific Islands Report
Pacific Islands Development Program, East-West Center

With Support From Center for Pacific Islands Studies, University of Hawai‘i


Public Comment Sought For NMI Shooting Range Changes
Marianas Islands Range Complex to see greater military usage

By Joy White

HAGTA, Guam (Marianas Variety Guam, Jan. 2, 2013) – The U.S. Navy has prepared a draft environmental assessment/overseas environmental assessment to analyze potential environmental impacts from proposed modifications to training airspace and sea space in the Mariana Islands Range Complex (MIRC).

The document is now available for public review and comment until Feb. 4.

The Navy’s proposed action seeks to modify and extend military training airspace and sea space within the MIRC. According to the Navy, this action is needed to provide a safer and more efficient training environment and to maintain military readiness.

The Navy analyzed the potential environmental impacts of three alternatives in the draft overseas assessment.

The "No Action Alternative" will continue training as currently authorized and implemented by the 2010 MIRC environmental impact statement/overseas environmental impact statement (EIS/OEIS).

Alternative 1 will modify existing military airspace and establish new airspace for public safety and training efficiency to extend the restricted area at Farallon de Medinilla, or FDM, from 3 nautical miles (nm) to 12 nm and designate the new area as R-7201A. This alternative will also create new warning areas and replace existing air traffic control.

Alternative 2 will modify and extend airspace as described under Alternative 1. It will also expand the sea space danger zone around FDM.

Thorough

The Navy said it conducted a thorough assessment of environmental resources to determine the potential effects from the proposed action and alternatives.

According to the Navy, the draft assessment indicates there would be no significant impact on the environment from proposed modifications to airspace and sea space.

The Navy is holding two public outreach sessions during which Navy representatives will staff poster stations and be available to answer questions about the proposed action and the draft overseas assessment.

Attendees are encouraged to provide written and/or verbal comments on the analysis at the sessions or any time during the public comment period.

The open house information sessions will be held from 5 to 8 p.m. at the University of Guam Leon Guerrero School of Business and Public Administration Building Anthony Leon Guerrero Multi-Purpose Room 129 on Tuesday, Jan. 15.

On Thursday, Jan. 17, an open house information session will be held at the Pedro P. Tenorio Multi-Purpose Center in Susupe, Saipan.

Copies of the draft overseas assessment are available for public review online at www.MIRCAirspaceEA.com and at the following locations:

  • University of Guam, Robert F. Kennedy Memorial Library, Government Documents Room;
  • Nieves M. Flores Memorial Library (Guam); and
  • Joeten-Kiyu Public Library (Saipan); Tinian Public Library;
  • Rota Public Library

Comments may be submitted online, by mail or at the public outreach meetings.

Comments must be postmarked or received by Feb. 4 for consideration in the final environmental assessment/overseas environmental assessment. Written comments may be submitted to: Naval Facilities Engineering Command Pacific; Attention: MIRC Airspace EA/OEA Project Manager; 258 Makalapa Drive, Suite 100; Pearl Harbor, HI 96860-3134 or online at the aforementioned MIRC website.

Marianas Variety Guam: www.mvguam.com
Copyright 2013 Marianas Variety. All Rights Reserved


Go back to Pacific Islands Report