[Federal Register: June 1, 2000 (Volume 65, Number 106)]
[Page 35120]
From the Federal Register Online via GPO Access [wais.access.gpo.gov]



Fish and Wildlife Service

Notice of Availability, Draft Assessment Plan

AGENCY:  Fish and Wildlife Service, Department of the Interior.

ACTION: Notice of Availability.


SUMMARY: The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service), on behalf of the 
Department of the Interior (DOI), as a natural resource trustee, 
announces the release for public review of the Draft Assessment Plan 
(AP) for the Natural Resource Damage Assessment and Restoration of the 
August 27, 1998, Clinch River Chemical Spill. The Draft AP describes 
the DOI's proposal to assess natural resources injured as a result of 
chemical spill in the Clinch River in Tazewell County, Virginia.

DATES: Written comments must be submitted on or before July 1, 2000.

ADDRESSES: Requests for copies of the Draft AP may be made to: Susan 
Lingenfelser, Ph.D., U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Virginia Field 
Office, 6669 Short Lane, Gloucester, Virginia 23061.
    Written comments or materials regarding the Draft AP should be sent 
to the same address.

Environmental Contaminants Branch, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, 
Virginia Field Office, 6669 Short Lane, Gloucester, Virginia 23061. 
Interested parties may also call (804) 693-6694. Ext. 113, or send e-
mail to susan_lingenfelser@fws.gov for further information.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: On August 27, 1998, a tanker truck 
overturned on U.S. Route 460 in Tazewell County, Virginia. The truck 
released approximately 1,250 gallons of Octocure 554-revised, a rubber 
accelerant, into an unnamed tributary about 500 feet from its 
confluence with the Clinch River. The spill turned the river a snowy 
white color and appeared to have killed most aquatic organisms, 
including three species of federally listed endangered mussels, for at 
least 6.6 miles downstream.
    Under the authority of the Comprehensive Response, Compensation and 
Liability Act of 1980, as amended (CERCLA), ``natural resource trustees 
may assess damages to natural resources resulting from a discharge of 
oil or a release of a hazardous substance * * * and may seek to recover 
those damages.'' Natural resource damage assessments are separate from 
the cleanup actions undertaken at a hazardous waste or spill site, and 
provide a process whereby the natural resource trustees can determine 
the proper compensation to the public for injury to natural resources. 
The natural resource damage assessment process seeks to: (1) Determine 
whether injury to, or loss of, trust resources has occurred: (2) 
ascertain the magnitude of the injury or loss: (3) calculate the 
appropriate compensation for the injury, including the cost of 
restoration; and (4) develop a restoration plan that will restore, 
rehabilitate, replace, and/or acquire equivalent resources for those 
resources that were injured or lost.
    The Draft AP presents the trustee's approaches for determining the 
quantifying natural resource injuries and calculating the damages 
associated with those injuries. By developing an Assessment Plan, the 
trustee can ensure that the natural resource damage assessment will be 
completed at a reasonable cost relative to the magnitude of damages. 
this Assessment Plan presents proposed assessment methodologies to 
potentially responsible parties, other trustees, affected agencies, and 
to the public, so that these groups can productively participate in the 
assessment process. The Draft AP is being released in accordance with 
the Natural Resource Damage Assessment Regulations found at Title 43 of 
the Code of Federal Regulation Part II.
    Interested members of the public are invited to review and comment 
on the Draft AP. Copies of the Draft AP are available from the U.S. 
Fish and Wildlife Service's Virginia Field Office at 6669 Short Lane, 
Gloucester, Virginia 23061. Additionally the Draft AP is available for 
review at the Tazewell County Main Library, 310 East Main Street. 
Tazewell, Virginia 24651 and the Tazewell County Library, Richlands 
Branch, 102 Suffolk Avenue, Richlands, Virginia 24641. All comments 
received on the Draft AP will be considered and a response provided 
either through revision of this Draft AP and incorporation into the 
Final Assessment Plan, or by letter to the commentor.


    The primary author of this notice is Susan Lingenfelser, Ph.D., 
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Virginia Field Office at 6669 Short 
Lane, Gloucester, Virginia 23061.

    Authority: The authority for this action is the Comprehensive 
Environmental Response. Compensation and Liability Act of 1980, as 
amended (``CERCLA''), 42 U.S.C.

    Dated: May 22, 2000.
Mamie A. Parker,
Acting Regional Director, Region 5, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.
[FR Doc. 00-13614 Filed 5-31-00; 8:45 am]