CEQA/NEPA Documentation

Calleguas Regional Salinity Management Project, Ventura County, California

Project Name: Calleguas Regional Salinity Management Project, Ventura County, California
Services: CEQA/NEPA, Permitting, and Mitigation Planning and Monitoring
Client: Calleguas Municipal Water District

Padre has been involved in the development and implementation of numerous phases of the Calleguas Regional Salinity Management Project. Padre’s involvement began with the preparation a Program Environmental Impact Report (EIR) and Environmental Assessment (EA) for the 32 mile-long wastewater pipeline, extending from Simi Valley to Oxnard, on behalf of the Calleguas Municipal Water District and Bureau of Reclamation. The purpose of the project is to dispose of tertiary treated wastewater and byproducts of advanced treatment (brine) that cannot be discharged to local streams due to a chloride Total Maximum Daily Load (TMDL) limits. Primary issues assessed in the document included water quality (ocean and freshwater), water quantity (loss of current wastewater discharge to stream), biological resources, noise, air quality, cultural resources and agriculture.

This project was complex and controversial requiring substantial stakeholder involvement. Stakeholders include various water districts, municipalities, regulatory agencies (e.g., Regional Water Quality Control Board), public interest organizations (e.g., Environmental Defense Center) and the general public. Therefore, Padre actively participated in numerous meetings directly associated with the project as well as the related Calleguas Creek Watershed Chloride Total Maximum Daily Load (TMDL) meetings along with the stakeholders.

Since the completion of the original Program EIR, Padre has continued to support the subsequent CEQA/NEPA compliance requirements for the project. A Mitigated Negative Declaration was prepared to address Phase 2 (Lower Reach) Pipeline Revisions. A Supplemental EIR/EA was required to address a change in the location and configuration of the project ocean outfall. An EIR was prepared to address revisions in the Phase 2 (Upper Reach) pipeline alignment.

Upon completion of the Supplemental EIR/EA for the ocean outfall, Padre provided permit acquisition services for the District which included a Coastal Development Permit, State Tidelands lease, Sections 404 and 401 permits and NPDES Permit.

During installation of the ocean outfall, Padre provided both onshore and offshore mitigation compliance monitoring services including frac-out monitoring (of the horizontal directional drilling), marine mammal monitoring and archaeological monitoring. Biological monitoring was also provided for other phases of the project.

AT&T Asia America Gateway Fiber Optic Project, San Luis Obispo County, California

Project Name: AT&T Asia America Gateway Fiber Optic Project, San Luis Obispo County, California
Services: CEQA, and Mitigation Planning and Monitoring
Client: California State Lands Commission

Padre was the prime contractor for the preparation of an EIR for the installation, operation, and abandonment of the California offshore and inland segment of a fiber optic cable from Southeast Asia to the U.S. The CEQA documentation involved the review of applicant-provided data reports on the seafloor and onshore habitats, marine and terrestrial biological cultural resources, and equipment/vessel emissions that Padre staff subsequently incorporated into the EIR. Specific issues of concern focused on the potential impacts of the placement of the offshore portion of the buried fiber optic cable on commercial fishing, hardbottom biota, and cultural resources. Onshore concerns centered on vehicle access to existing buried conduits across streams and other sensitive terrestrial habitats.

An extensive air quality modeling effort, including the analysis of greenhouse gas emissions, was completed for the project and mitigations to reduce air, water, and land-related impacts were included in a Mitigation Monitoring and Reporting Plan (MMRP). Seasonal restrictions to reduce potential effects on listed species, including marine mammals and nesting raptors, were included in the plan as was an onboard monitoring requirement for fisheries and marine wildlife effects.

In addition to preparing the EIR and MMRP, Padre was the State’s mitigation monitor, which entailed biologists, cultural resource specialists, and other technical experts to be on-site during the offshore cable laying/burial operations and for the documentation of onshore impacts from vehicle access and conduit excavation. Padre marine scientists were also responsible for reviewing applicant-provided videotapes of the offshore cable laying operations and for the reporting of effects of those operations on seafloor habitats along the 60 mile-long offshore cable corridor.

Tajiguas Resource Recovery Project, Santa Barbara County, California

Project Name: Tajiguas Resource Recovery Project, Santa Barbara County, California
Services: CEQA
Client: Santa Barbara County Public Works Department, Resource Recovery & Waste Management Division

The Santa Barbara County Public Works Department, Resource Recovery & Waste Management (RRWM) Division proposes to modify the operation of the Tajiguas Landfill to add a Resource Recovery Project (Project) that would process recyclables and organic material from municipal solid waste. The Project includes the addition of a Materials Recovery Facility (MRF) and Dry Fermentation Anaerobic Digestion (AD) Facility to the Tajiguas Landfill. Recyclables would be recovered at the MRF and processed for sale. Recovered organic material would be processed in the AD Facility and residue would be disposed at the landfill. The AD facility would produce biogas which would be used as a source of energy at the facility and digestate which would be cured into soil amendments.

Padre assisted the RRWM with the preparation of a Subsequent Environmental Impact Report (SEIR) for the Project. The SEIR evaluated eight alternatives in detail including the proposed Project. No significant and unavoidable impacts were determined to result from implementation of the Project, excluding those associated with extending the life of the landfill (which is an objective of the Project). Significant but mitigable impacts were identified in the areas of scenic resources, biological resources, hazardous materials, geological hazards, land use, water resources. The Project is also generally sensitive to the public due to the location of the Tajiguas Landfill in the Gaviota coast rural region.

The SEIR was subject to extensive internal review by the “Public Participants” for the project which include the jurisdictional areas served by the Tajiguas Landfill. Specifically, the Public Participants include the County of Santa Barbara, and cities of Santa Barbara, Goleta, Buellton and Solvang.

Morro Bay Power Plant Marine Terminal Decommissioning Project, Morro Bay, California

Project Name:Morro Bay Power Plant Marine Terminal Decommissioning Project, Morro Bay, California
Services:CEQA, Permitting, Biological Studies, and Compliance Monitoring (Onshore and Offshore)
Client:Dynegy Morro Bay, LLC and California State Lands Commission

Padre prepared the Mitigated Negative Declaration in coordination with the California State Lands Commission (CSLC) for the Dynegy Morro Bay, LLC, Morro Bay Power Plant Marine Terminal Decommissioning Project. Padre also assisted in preparation of the Project Plans including, but not limited to, the Site Restoration Plan, Marine Wildlife Contingency Plan, Cultural Resources Management Plan, Tribal Cultural Resources Management Plan, and Hazardous Materials Management and Contingency Plan. Other Project tasks included preparation of the air quality and greenhouse gas emission calculations, asbestos survey, biological surveys, and nesting bird surveys. Padre also prepared regulatory permit applications and secured the following permits for the Project: California Coastal Commission Coastal Development Permit, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Nationwide Permit Authorization, Regional Water Quality Control Board Water Quality Certification, and the California Department of Fish and Wildlife Operation of Law Letter. Padre’s staff provided compliance monitoring for offshore and onshore project activities, including marine mammal monitoring, biological monitoring, and cultural monitoring.

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