ARIZONA — In light of the extensive review of issues raised during the objection process for the Rosemont Copper Mine Project Final Environmental Impact Statement (FEIS), Regional Forester Cal Joyner has determined it necessary to delay his response to the objections filed with the Forest Service.
“The Rosemont Copper Project FEIS is one of the most comprehensive environmental analysis documents ever undertaken by the Forest Service,” stated Joyner. “The complexity of the content of the objections will require additional time to thoroughly review and give full and deliberate considerations to the issues raised,” Joyner added. Once the objection process review is complete, the Regional Forester will issue a written response to the objections.
Many projects and activities within the Forest Service are subject to a pre-decisional administrative review process, commonly referred to as an objection process. Under this process, individuals and entities may file objections after an environmental analysis document is completed and before a decision document is signed.
Coronado National Forest Supervisor Jim Upchurch completed the Rosemont Copper Project FEIS in late December 2013 and issued a Draft Record of Decision (ROD). The objection filing period began January 1, 2014, and by the close of the filing period on February 14, 2014, 101 objections were received by the Southwestern Region of the Forest Service. Regional Forester Cal Joyner is the reviewing officer for the objection process.
In July 2007, Rosemont Copper submitted a preliminary mine plan of operations (MPO) to the Coronado National Forest requesting approval to construct, operate, reclaim, and close an open pit mine on and adjacent to National Forest System lands for development of the Rosemont ore deposit. The National Environmental Policy Act analysis process was initiated in March of 2008, in response to the Mine Plan of Operations for an open-pit copper mine proposed for the Santa Rita Mountains southeast of Tucson, Arizona.
All parties that submitted objections have been notified there will be a delay until the regional review is completed. For more information on the objection resolution process, download brochure.
The Forest Service will strive to issue a response to the objectors without undue delay and will provide an update on our progress and the schedule for the ROD by the end of May 2014.