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NPS Releases Draft EIS 3/11
Yellowstone New Winter-Use Plan Available for Comment


A new Draft Environmental Impact Statement (Draft EIS) for a long-term plan designed to manage winter use and determine the type and extent of future snowmobile and snowcoach use in Yellowstone National Park has been released for public review and comment.
The Park Service analyzed seven alternatives, ranging from not allowing any motorized use, to allowing up to 720 snowmobiles and 78 snowcoaches per day. The park also considered an alternative that would allow commercial, wheeled vehicles to travel on roads that would be plowed from West Yellowstone and Mammoth Hot Springs to Old Faithful. 

According to the Park Service, ‘the "preferred alternative" takes a new approach by varying the maximum number of oversnow vehicles allowed in the park for certain days and periods during the winter season. This "preferred alternative" would allow varying days of higher and lower numbers of snowmobiles and snowcoaches in the park so that visitors would have a greater variety of motorized and non-motorized experiences throughout the season. Some days could have as many as 330 snowmobiles and 80 snowcoaches in the park, while others could have as few as 110 snowmobiles and 30 snowcoaches. Use of "best available technology" (BAT) snowmobiles would continue, and a new limit on nitrogen oxide emissions would be implemented. By the winter of 2014-2015, snowcoaches would be required to meet or exceed the Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA) 2010 emission standards for new wheeled vehicles.’

The comment period is now open and will close at midnight MDT on July 18, 2011.

In addition to public meetings in western states and Washington DC, two public webinars are scheduled for June 21 and June 22.  For more information, visit http://parkplanning.nps.gov/projectHome.cfm?projectID=29281
The letter provided below addresses concerns with the plan.

HOW TO COMMENT

1. Submit comments through the NPS website - http://parkplanning.nps.gov/document.cfm?parkID=111&projectID=29281&documentID=40801

2. Submit written comments to: (only 1 letter per envelope will be accepted)

Yellowstone National Park
Winter Use DEIS
Box 168
Yellowstone National Park, WY 82190

3. Attend one of the public meetings or participate in one of the "webinars".

NOTE: Comments will not be accepted by fax, email, or in any other way than those specified above. Bulk comments in any format (hard copy or electronic) submitted on behalf of others will not be accepted.


Executive Summary of Draft Winter Use Plan/ Environmental Impact Statement Open Item
Sample Comment Letter (PDF) Open Item
Sample Comment Letter (Word) Open Item
Summary of Yellowstone Winter-Use Plan Alternatives Open Item


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