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Grand Canyon Planning Update

Posted: 10/28/2003
by Jason Robertson

The Park Service has asked American Whitewater to share the following Grand Canyon planning update.  Of particular interest is that the Park has expressed an intention to select a preferred alternative in the draft EIS and that release of the EIS continues to be delayed from the originally scheduled release date this summer.

American Whitewater continues to work on this issue and track this project as we strive to work with the Park to fix the Waiting List. Individuals registering for a private boater launch permit in 2003 will not be able to receive their permit until 2029 under current management practices. We are in touch with the Park and working closely with our affiliate Grand Canyon Private Boaters Association ( More information about this issue and American Whitewater's work as a Top Issue of 2003 is available at

  October 21, 2003                                                         
  From: Planning Team Leader, Colorado River Management Plan               
  Subject: Update on the CRMP Planning Process                             
  Grand Canyon National Park is making considerable progress in developing a Draft Environmental Impact Statement for revising the park's Colorado  
  River Management Plan (CRMP). We have developed a full range of reasonable draft alternatives (including the current situation which is  
  the No Action alternative), which is now undergoing preliminary impacts analysis.                                                                
  The planning team has carefully considered and addressed input including the following:                                                           
       - Extensive comments the park received during the public scoping period in 2002,                                                     
       - Input from the stakeholder workshops and expert panels,             
       - Consultation with Native American Tribes,                           
       - Interagency consultation,                                           
       - Provisions of the 2002 lawsuit settlement agreement,                
       - Extensive data and other information gathered by the planning team, and                                                                 
       - Laws, policies, and principles guiding plan development (on the CRMP
       website at                                  
  The next steps in the CRMP planning process will include:                
       - Add mitigation measures to the alternatives, as necessary, to       
       address any major impacts identified in the preliminary impacts     
       analysis. The mitigated alternatives will then undergo additional   
       impacts analysis. All of this is scheduled for completion in early  
       - Review the draft alternatives and draft impacts analysis, make any  
       necessary changes, and select a preferred alternative. The preferred
       alternative will be the agency's proposal for a revised CRMP; it may
       be one of the draft alternatives, the No Action alternative, or a   
       new alternative developed during the preferred alternative selection
       - Publish a Draft CRMP/EIS for public review and comment (after any   
       additional revisions and analysis).                                 
  We will not know the exact timing for publishing and public review of the
  Draft CRMP/EIS until the preferred alternative selection process has been
  completed. Once that process is completed, we will announce the schedule 
  in a note to the CRMP email list, and on the CRMP website. When the Draft
  CRMP/EIS is published, the park will issue a Notice of Availability in   
  the Federal Register, a press release, and a note to everyone on the CRMP
  mailing list. We have begun planning for extensive public review         
  opportunities, including public meetings, and we will keep you informed  
  as we develop the details.                                               
  Please send any comments or questions concerning this note or the process
  to (please be sure to use an underscore to make        
  grca_crmp). Thank you for your interest in Grand Canyon National Park and
  the Colorado River Management Plan.                                      
  Rick Ernenwein                                                           
  CRMP Planning Team Leader                                                




Jason D. Robertson
635 Joseph Cir
Golden, CO 80403-2349