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ENB Multiregion and Statewide Completed Applications 08/01/2012



Niagara Mohawk Power Corporation
300 Erie Blvd West
Syracuse, NY 13202 -4201


Row in Niagara Mohawk Service Area
Regions 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8 and 9
Various, NY

Application ID:


Permit(s) Applied for:

Article 11 Endangered/Threatened Species (Incidental Take)

Project is Located:


Project Description:

Niagara Mohawk dba National Grid (NG) has applied for an Article 11 Endangered and Threatened Species Incidental Take Permit for gas and electric Right-of-Way (ROW) activities including:

  1. vegetation maintenance,
  2. routine scheduled maintenance,
  3. road access,
  4. infrastructure repair,
  5. substation repair and maintenance,
  6. new construction.

All of the permitted activities are described in the Habitat Conservation Plan (HCP) for the Karner Blue Butterfly and Frosted Elfin developed by National Grid (NG), approved by US Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS), and incorporated by reference into this Permit. The locations in which the activities above will be offset by the enhancement or mitigation portions of this Permit are specified in Covered Lands depicted in HCP Maps Figure 1, which are in DEC Regions 4, 5, and 6. This Permit and HCP would allow National Grid a limit of no more than 3.5 acres of permanent loss, and only for National Grid activities taking place within the Covered Lands described, over the fifty (50) year duration of this Permit. This Permit and the HCP would also allow up to 84 acres of temporary disturbance of habitat, only within the Covered Lands, and over the fifty (50) year duration of the above federal permit from these activities, provided that National Grid conducts the 'enhancement' activities which are described in the document, including but not limited to vegetation plantings, adequate protection of the lands, and education efforts. National Grid will implement these avoidance and minimization measures to reduce the damage to habitat, or 'take', and will mitigate for permanent loss, or 'take'. The measures are strategies presented, approved and implemented in detail, in the HCP. The Implementation Agreement (IA) is the signatory document which validates and commits National Grid to the conditions of the HCP and reflects that this Permit complements USFWS Federal Permit TE78032A-0. That Federal Permit is stated here for reference purposes only, and not for enforcement by the State. This State permit also complements the Federal Permit, in that it is written for the duration reflected in the USFWS Permit of 50 years.

Butterfly species identified as potentially impacted by an incidental take include: - the State listed Endangered Karner Blue butterfly (KBB) {(Part 182.5) (a)}, and - the State Threatened Frosted Elfin (FE) {(Part 182.5 (b)}.

Because take of these species is exceedingly difficult to detect, NG, DEC and USFWS agreed that impacts to KBB and FE habitat shall be used as a surrogate for take. DEC anticipates that temporary disturbance in 84 acres and the permanent loss of up to 3.5 acres of lost KBB and FE habitat will be mitigated with the strategies outlined in the HCP, by requiring that National Grid: a) create and enhance approximately 59 acres of habitat (Covered Lands C, E, D1 and D2), b) permanently preserve the 5 acre Covered Land C in a conservation easement, c) increase connectivity of habitat, d) enable more effective management in habitat adjacent to National Grid ROW's, and e) reduce existing threats such as damage from off-road vehicles.

Both the DEC and USFWS have determined that the HCP will result in a net conservation benefit for both species. Because the Habitat Conservation Plan and associated Implementation Agreement (IA) contain what DEC finds to be acceptable habitat protections for both of the above State- listed species, this DEC Permit is issued because it concurs with the same Federally approved HCP and IA documents.

The Permit, HCP and IA documents may be reviewed: www.dec.ny.gov/permits/6061.html.

The project is located in the applicant's right-of-way in DEC's Region 4, 5 and 6.

Availability of Application Documents:

Filed application documents, and Department draft permits where applicable, are available for inspection during normal business hours at the address of the contact person. To ensure timely service at the time of inspection, it is recommended that an appointment be made with the contact person.

State Environmental Quality Review (SEQR) Determination:

Project is an Unlisted Action and will not have a significant impact on the environment. A Negative Declaration is on file. A coordinated review was performed.

SEQR Lead Agency: NYS Department of Environmental Conservation

State Historic Preservation Act (SHPA) Determination:

The proposed activity is not subject to review in accordance with SHPA. The permit type is exempt or the activity is being reviewed in accordance with federal historic preservation regulations.

Coastal Management:

This project is not located in a Coastal Management area and is not subject to the Waterfront Revitalization and Coastal Resources Act.

Opportunity for Public Comment:

Comments on this project must be submitted in writing to the Contact Person no later than Aug 16, 2012.


Betsy R Hohenstein
NYSDEC Headquarters
625 Broadway
Albany, NY 12233

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