[Federal Register Volume 78, Number 47 (Monday, March 11, 2013)]
[Pages 15374-15376]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2013-05524]



Fish and Wildlife Service

[FWS-R3-ES-2013-N051; FXES11130300000-134-FF03E00000]

Notice of Availability of Draft Habitat Conservation Plan; 
Receipt of Application for Incidental Take Permit; Enbridge Pipelines 
(Lakehead), L.L.C.

AGENCY: Fish and Wildlife Service, Interior.

ACTION: Notice of availability.


SUMMARY: We, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service, USFWS), have 
received an application from Enbridge Pipelines (Lakehead) L.L.C. 
(applicant), for an incidental take permit (ITP) under the Endangered 
Species Act of 1973 (ESA). If approved, the ITP would authorize 
incidental take of the federally endangered Hine's Emerald Dragonfly 
(hereafter ``HED''). The applicant has prepared a low-effect habitat 
conservation plan (HCP) to cover activities associated with pipeline 
maintenance work in Garfield Township, Mackinac County, Michigan. We 
invite comments from the public on the application, which includes the 
low-effect HCP, which has been determined to be eligible for a 
Categorical Exclusion under the National Environmental Policy Act of 
1969, as amended (NEPA).

DATES: To ensure consideration, please send your written comments on or 
before April 10, 2013.

ADDRESSES: Send written comments via U.S. mail to the Field Supervisor, 
Attn: Barbara Hosler, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, 2651 Coolidge 
Road East, Ste. 101, Lansing, MI 48823. Phone: 517-351-2555. Fax: 517-
351-1443. TTY: 1-800-877-8339, or by electronic mail to Barbara_Hosler@fws.gov.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Barb Hosler, (517) 351-6326

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: We have received an application from 

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Pipelines (Lakehead) L.L.C., Inc., for an incidental take permit (ITP) 
under the Endangered Species Act of 1973 (16 U.S.C. 1531 et seq.; ESA). 
If approved, the ITP would authorize incidental take of the Hine's 
Emerald Dragonfly (hereafter ``HED''; Somatochlora hineana).
    Under the ESA, we announce that we have gathered the information 
necessary to evaluate the application for permit issuance, including 
the HCP, which provides measures to minimize and mitigate the effects 
of the proposed incidental take of the HED.


    Pipeline maintenance work is planned by Enbridge Pipelines 
(Lakehead) L.L.C. (Enbridge) in Garfield Township, Mackinac County, 
Michigan. The purpose of the planned work is to inspect and, if 
necessary, repair three sections of Enbridge's Line 5 (30-inch 
diameter) pipeline located in and adjacent to a tributary to O'Niel 
Creek and associated wetlands. The sections of pipe require excavation 
in order to complete. The proposed excavation is estimated to be 30 ft 
wide, 140 ft long, and up to 10 ft deep.
    The maintenance of the pipeline at the identified locations is 
being completed as required by the Department of Transportation (DOT) 
regulations in the Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) at 49 CFR Part 
195.452 on Integrity Management. The proposed work is expected to take 
approximately 14 to 21 days to complete during winter months in early 
2013, and will be initiated after the required permits are obtained. 
The permits will cover all activities associated with accessing the 
work site during winter, including excavation, pipeline inspection and 
repair, dewatering, temporary work area and spoil pile stock, 
backfilling excavation, and site restoration. The area included is 2.64 
acres. The extent of direct impact by the project is 0.97 acres within 
the HCP boundary.
    Surveys have not been conducted for Hine's Emerald Dragonfly at the 
project site. An Incidental Take Permit is being sought because 
potential habitat is present and will be impacted by the proposed 
project. Temporary impacts will result from winter excavation, 
dewatering, and backfilling, which may destroy overwintering dragonfly 
larvae. No impacts to adults, or adult foraging and breeding habitat, 
are anticipated.
    Based on population estimates of known populations within Michigan, 
the number of larvae within the 4,200 ft\2\ (390 m\2\) excavation 
footprint could be within the range of 156--328 larvae. Assuming the 
worst-case impact using highest larval densities reported for Michigan, 
direct impact could be mortality of 328 larvae from winter-time 
excavation. The impact area of the excavation represents approximately 
3.5 percent of the potential habitat at this site. If number of larvae 
in the habitat is proportional to the habitat area, the density 
estimate of 0.84 larvae/m\2\ yields an overall population estimate of 
over 9,300 larvae. The maximum estimated impact of 328 larvae 
represents 3.5 percent of this total.
    Upon completion of the work, the site will be restored and mulched. 
The stream bank will be reinforced with a biolog consisting of coconut 
fibers that have been compressed and stuffed into a netting. Biolog 
anchorage shall be in accordance with the manufacturer's 
recommendations. The excavation will be mulched with weed-free mulch or 
an erosion control mat. The excavation area will be revegetated after 
soil thaw (May 1-June 1) with a wet meadow seed mixture comprised of 
regionally appropriate native species. Seeding will be done by hand or 
with a hand-held seeder.
    Compensatory mitigation will consist of a one-time payment of 
$12,000 to the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation (NFWF). The 
payment will be made at the time the incidental take permit is issued 
and will be earmarked for conservation programs to benefit Hine's 
emerald dragonfly.
    Monitoring will be conducted during and after pipeline maintenance 
to document the extent of actual excavation and site restoration. No 
surveys are proposed for adult or larval dragonflies.

Proposed Action

    Section 9 of the ESA prohibits the ``taking'' of threatened and 
endangered species. However, provided certain criteria are met, we are 
authorized to issue permits under section 10(a)(1)(B) of the ESA for 
take of federally listed species, when, among other things, such a 
taking is incidental to, and not the purpose of, otherwise lawful 
activities. Under the ESA, the term ``take'' means to harass, harm, 
pursue, hunt, shoot, wound, kill, trap, capture, or collect endangered 
and threatened species, or to attempt to engage in any such conduct. 
Our implementing regulations define ``harm'' as significant habitat 
modification or degradation that results in death or injury to listed 
species by significantly impairing essential behavioral patterns, 
including breeding, feeding, or sheltering (50 CFR 17.3). Harass, as 
defined, means ``an intentional or negligent act or omission which 
creates the likelihood of injury to wildlife by annoying it to such an 
extent as to significantly disrupt normal behavioral patterns which 
include, but are not limited to, breeding, feeding, or sheltering'' (50 
CFR 17.3). However, under specified circumstances, the Service may 
issue permits that allow the take of federally listed species, provided 
that the take that occurs is incidental to, but not the purpose of, an 
otherwise lawful activity.
    Regulations governing permits for endangered and threatened species 
are at 50 CFR 17.22 and 17.32, respectively. Section 10(a)(1)(B) of the 
Act contains provisions for issuing such incidental take permits to 
non-Federal entities for the take of endangered and threatened species, 
provided the following criteria are met: (1) The taking will be 
incidental; (2) The applicant will, to the maximum extent practicable, 
minimize and mitigate the impact of such taking; (3) The applicant will 
develop a proposed HCP and ensure that adequate funding for the HCP 
will be provided; (4) The taking will not appreciably reduce the 
likelihood of the survival and recovery of the species in the wild; and 
(5) The applicant will carry out any other measures that the Service 
may require as being necessary or appropriate for the purposes of the 
    The applicant seeks an incidental take permit for proposed covered 
activities within a 2.64-acre permit area. The draft HCP analyzes take 
attributable to the applicant's proposed activities. If issued, the ITP 
would authorize potential incidental take of HED consistent with the 
applicant's HCP. To issue the permit, the Service must find that the 
application, including its HCP, satisfies the criteria of section 
10(a)(1)(B) of the ESA and the Service's implementing regulations at 50 
CFR Part 13, 17.22, and 17.32.

Reviewing Documents and Submitting Comments

    Please refer to the Enbridge HCP when submitting comments. The 
permit application and supporting documents (ITP application, HCP, EAS) 
may be obtained on the Internet at the following address: http://www.fws.gov/midwest/endangered/permits/hcp/r3hcps.html.
    Persons without access to the Internet may obtain copies of the 
draft HCP and associated documents by contacting the Service office 
described under ADDRESSES, above. The draft document will also be 
available for public inspection, by appointment, during normal business 
hours (8 a.m. to 4 p.m.) at the office described under ADDRESSES above.

[[Page 15376]]

    Written comments will be accepted as described under ADDRESSES, 

Public Availability of Comments

    Written comments we receive become part of the public record 
associated with this action. Before including your address, phone 
number, email address, or other personal identifying information in 
your comment, you should be aware that the entire comment, including 
your personal identifying information, may be made available at any 
time. While you can ask us in your comment to withhold your personal 
identifying information from public review, we cannot guarantee that we 
will be able to do so.


    We provide this notice under section 10(c) of the ESA (16 U.S.C. 
1531 et seq.) and its implementing regulations (50 CFR 17.22), and NEPA 
(42 U.S.C. 4371 et seq.) and its implementing regulations (40 CFR 
1506.6; 43 CFR part 46).

    Dated: March 4, 2013.
Lynn Lewis,
Assistant Regional Director, Ecological Services, Midwest Region.
[FR Doc. 2013-05524 Filed 3-8-13; 8:45 am]