United States Nuclear Regulatory Commission - Protecting People and the Environment

Smith Ranch Documents Pertaining to Section 106 of the National Historic Preservation Act and Solicitation of Public Comments

The U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) received an application from Power Resources (d/b/a Cameco Resources [Cameco]) dated February 1, 2012 (Agencywide Documents Access and Management System [ADAMS] Accession Number ML12159A399). By this application, Cameco requested renewal of NRC Source Material License SUA-1548 to authorize continued uranium in situ recovery at the Smith Ranch-Highland Uranium Project (the Project). The Project includes the Smith Ranch, Highland, and Reynolds Ranch sites in Converse County, the Gas Hills remote satellite site in Fremont and Natrona Counties, the North Butte remote satellite site in Campbell County, and the Ruth remote satellite site in Johnson County, Wyoming. The NRC staff is conducting an environmental review in accordance with the Title 10 of the Code of Federal Regulations Part 51 (10 CFR Part 51), which implements the requirements of the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969, as amended (NEPA). The NRC staff is also conducting a Section 106 review in accordance with the National Historic Preservation Act of 1966, as amended (NHPA). NRC staff initiated its consultation under Section 106 for the project in December 2012. The staff is now providing documents for public consideration and comment consistent with 36 CFR § 800.4(d)(1).

The direct area of potential effect (APE) consists of the areas where proposed ground disturbing activities could occur. The NRC staff consulted with interested Native American Tribes to identify historic properties, specifically ones of religious and cultural significance. The NRC staff also reviewed the information provided by Cameco in its license renewal application. The NRC acknowledges that the Tribes possess special expertise in identifying properties of cultural and religious significance and assessing the significance of these properties to their individual Tribes. Based on the information found in the NRC staff's independent analysis, the NRC staff has preliminarily concluded that there are no additional sites of historic, cultural, or religious significance present in the APE. However, the sites that had been previously identified as eligible for listing in the National Register of Historic Places would remain in License SUA-1548, which states, in part, that Cameco must propose mitigation measures prior to performing any work in the area of the eligible sites. The NRC staff has documented its preliminary determination, detailing the Section 106 activities and cultural resources findings, and has included that documentation in the cultural resources sections of the draft Environmental Assessment for the Smith Ranch project. A document containing those sections is available in the link below.

NRC documentation of its Section 106 review findings. (Cultural Resources sections of draft Environmental Assessment)

NRC is soliciting comments from the public on the document provided above or on the information stated here. NRC staff will accept comments until Friday, September 7, 2018. Please submit your comments by email to James.Park@nrc.gov.

Page Last Reviewed/Updated Thursday, August 09, 2018