Tonto National Forest to Begin Resolution Copper Project and Land Exchange Environmental Impact Statement

Notice Published in Federal Register on March 18, 2016

PHOENIX, March 18, 2016 — For Immediate Release.
The Tonto National Forest has published a Notice of Intent to prepare an Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) in the Federal Register, announcing the beginning of the EIS process for the proposed Resolution Copper mine and an associated land exchange.

The proposed mine is located on Tonto National Forest, private and state lands near Superior, Arizona. The Tonto National Forest is initiating the EIS to comply with Section 3003 of the Carl Levin and Howard P. “Buck” McKeon National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2015 (NDAA) and Forest Service regulations.

This EIS will analyze environmental effects of approval of the proposed General Plan of Operations submitted by Resolution Copper, which would authorize surface disturbance on National Forest lands from the proposed mining operations; and the transfer of 2,422 acres of public land, commonly known as Oak Flat, to Resolution Copper in exchange for eight parcels of land located throughout Arizona, totaling 5,344 acres. The EIS will develop and analyze alternatives, and disclose environmental effects associated with approval of the General Plan of Operations and administration of the land exchange.

The Notice of Intent published in today’s Federal Register initiates the public involvement process, which guides the development of the EIS. Public open house meetings will be held to ask questions and learn more about public concerns with this project. The following meetings are scheduled:

  • March 31, 2016, 5:00 – 8:00 p.m.
    Queen Valley Recreation Hall, 1478 East Queen Valley Drive, Queen Valley, Arizona.
  • April 4, 2016, 5:00 – 8:00 p.m.
    Superior High School, Multi-purpose room, 100 Mary Drive, Superior, Arizona.
  • April 5, 2016, 5:00 – 8:00 p.m.
    Elks Lodge, 1775 East Maple Street, Globe, Arizona
  • April 6, 2016, 5:00 – 8:00 p.m.
    Southwest Regional Library, 775 North Greenfield Road, Gilbert, Arizona.

The public is invited to submit public comments during the initial 60-day scoping period. Comments may be submitted in a variety of ways including via email, through the project website, by mail, facsimile, and verbally by leaving a phone message. Written comments may be sent to: Resolution EIS Comments, P.O. Box 34468, Phoenix, AZ 85067-4468, via email to: comments@resolutionmineeis.us, submitted via website at https://www.resolutionmineeis.us, sent via facsimile to 1-866-546-5718, or submitted by leaving a verbal message at 1-866-546-5718.

Further details about the project can be found at the project web page: https://www.resolutionmineeis.us

Source: 

Temporary Contact Update

The Tonto Supervisor’s Office in Phoenix remains temporarily closed in July 2019 due to a building renovation project. As a result, questions from the media and general public regarding the Resolution Copper Project and Land Exchange should be e-mailed to John Scaggs at: john.scaggs@usda.gov

EIS Timeline - Feb 2019

  1. Proponent submits revised Plan of Operations [Sep 2014]
  2. Federal Register Notice of Intent to prepare EIS [Mar 2016]
  3. Public scoping period and scoping meetings
    [5 meetings between Mar-Jun 2016; comment period extended from 60 days to 120 days, closed Jul 18, 2016 ]
  4. Compile and review existing data
  5. Prepare project description and identify project alternatives
  6. Publish Alternatives Evaluation Report [Sep 2017]
  7. We Are Here
    Validate Baseline Information; analyze environmental effects
  8. Prepare Draft EIS
  9. Federal Register Notice of Availability of Draft EIS
  10. 90-day public review and comment period, with public meetings
  11. Respond to public comments and prepare Final EIS
  12. Federal Register Notice of Availability of Final EIS and Draft ROD
  13. 45-day Public Objection Period
  14. Resolve objections to Final EIS and draft ROD
  15. Issue Final Record of Decision

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Forest Points of Contact

Media & General Info
John Scaggs
jscaggs@fs.fed.us

Project Manager
Resolution Copper
Mary Rasmussen
mcrasmussen@fs.fed.us

Apache Leap Special Management Area
Apache Leap SMA website