Notice is hereby given that the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service), in cooperation with the Alabama Department of Conservation and Natural Resources’ (ADCNR) State Parks Division, has prepared a draft Environmental Assessment (EA) to assess the City of Orange Beach’s (COB) request to exchange ~74 acres adjacent to Gulf State Park, for ~40 acres within Gulf State Park.  The City of Orange Beach’s request is in support of their waste water treatment system expansion, the proximity of this expansion to the system’s existing infrastructure, and their overall desire to manage and maintain clean waste water discharge within this community.

This project has a substantial federal interest because the Department of the Interior (DOI) previously provided the ADCNR a grant award through the Service’s National Coastal Wetlands Program to purchase the lands which are proposed to be transferred from the ADCNR to the COB, in exchange for lands presently owned by the COB.  For that reason it requires approval by the Service on behalf of DOI.  The exchange is considered a federal action that requires evaluation under the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) Section 7 of the Endangered Species Act and Section 106 of the National Preservation Act.  The Service prepared an EA to carry out its evaluation of the possible environmental impacts of this proposed land exchange. 

The draft EA can be viewed at the link provided here.

Environmental Assessment under the National Coastal Wetlands Conservation Grant Program