SCS Aquaterra completed an Environmental Assessment (EA) on behalf of Oklahoma Natural Gas Company (ONG), a subsidiary of ONEOK, for renewal of a 10-mile segment of its Cumberland L63 natural gas pipeline located on property managed by the U.S. Corps of Engineers (USACE) in Bryan and Marshall Counties, Oklahoma. The pipeline was installed in the 1960s, and has been operated by ONG since 1991. The project right-of-way (ROW) in the USACE-leased area crosses the Cumberland Cut, a canal that connects parts of Lake Texoma, and the Old Channel of the Washita River, which was an original source of Lake Texoma, a manmade lake.
As the current lease agreement for operation of the pipeline was set to expire in 2011, renewal by the USACE was necessary in order to avoid interruption in service provided by the pipeline. As the property and/or regulatory authority lessee is a Federal entity, an EA to evaluate the impacts to the human and natural environment associated with the action was necessary for compliance with the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969 (NEPA; Public Law 91-190) set forth by the Council on Environmental Quality (CEQ). The EA was developed in accordance with guidance provided in Title 40 of the Code of Federal Regulations (CFR), Parts 1500 through 1508, and in USACE Engineering Regulation 200-2-2, Procedures for Implementing NEPA. The EA was intended to identify potential environmental impacts of the proposed project; it was determined through the EA that a Finding of No Significant Impact (FONSI) was appropriate for the Proposed Action.
The Cumberland L63 pipeline is one of ONG’s two feeder lines that support its network in Southeastern Oklahoma. The pipeline is needed to maintain current levels of service to ONG’s residential and commercial customer base. The renewal of the real estate lease to operate the pipeline USACE-leased land was crucial to maintain a safe, efficient supply of natural gas to ONG’s customers in Oklahoma and beyond.
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