Project Issue Advisory Groups:
Over the past year, all seven of the Yadkin Project Issue Advisory Groups (IAG) have met two or more times to discuss resource issues, develop study plans, implement studies, and review data. For your information, we have summarized the progress of each IAG to date below. As we enter our second field study season, Yadkin anticipates the completion of a majority of the resource studies and the beginning of the review of data and draft study reports with the IAGs.
everyone up to date on the work completed by all of the IAGs and to discuss
future phases of the relicensing process, Yadkin is tentatively scheduling a
joint meeting of all IAG participants for the afternoon of
During 2003, the County Economic Impacts IAG met on March 14 and November 5 (final meeting summaries are available on Yadkin’s website at www.alcoa.com/yadkin). The County Economic Impacts IAG was formed to consider the value of the Yadkin Project as a tourism resource, a natural/environmental resource, a generating resource and its potential economic impact to the surrounding five counties. During this time, the IAG raised issues of interest about the Project reservoirs and associated economic impacts in the five surrounding counties (including reservoir related businesses, property values, and recreation). At the November meeting, Yadkin introduced Research Triangle Institute (RTI) as the consultant that would study these issues. RTI discussed a proposed study outline with the IAG and has, based on IAG input, developed a draft study plan for the Surrounding Counties Economic Impact Study. The draft study plan was discussed at the most recent IAG meeting in February 2004 and is being finalized based on comments received from the IAG. RTI is currently in the data collection phase of its work, and will begin to use selected methods and models to analyze impacts in the summer of 2004.
Resources IAG met on August 27 and
Also at the request of the US Forest Service, Yadkin is currently considering some archaeological survey work at several dispersed recreation areas around the Project reservoirs. Yadkin has consulted further with the USFS on this issue and will be preparing a draft study plan within the next few months.
The Fish and
Aquatics (RTE Aquatic) IAG met several times during 2003 on March 12, April 9,
and October 7 (final meeting summaries are available on Yadkin's website). The
IAG met most recently on
At the most recent Fish and Aquatics IAG meeting, the IAG also began discussing the Habitat Fragmentation Study. The state and federal resource agencies are currently considering possible study methodologies. The proposed Habitat Fragmentation Study will be discussed further at the meetings in May 2004.
During 2003, the
Water Quality IAG met on March 13, May 20, and October 7 (final meeting
summaries are available on Yadkin's website). At these meetings, the IAG
finalized study plans for the Water Quality Monitoring Study and the Sediment
Fate and Transport Study. The IAG met most recently on
Normandeau and PB Power continue to make progress on the Sediment Fate and Transport Study and we anticipate a draft study report being available during the second quarter.
The Water Quality
IAG plans to meet again on
Wildlife, and Botanical IAG met on March 13, April 25, and October 8, 2003
(final meeting summaries are available on Yadkin's website) to finalize study
plans for the following studies: Wetland and Riparian Habitat Assessment;
Transmission Line and Project Facility Habitat Assessment; Invasive Exotic Plant
Species Inventory; RTE Species Inventory, and Avian Inventory. The IAG also met
Normandeau Associates has finished photo-delineating wetlands and upland land use at the Project and plans to ground-truth the data in 2004. Also in October 2003, Normandeau Associates examined, in the field, newly established vegetation in High Rock Reservoir. Normandeau is also finalizing the RTE species list based on comments received from the IAG and will begin species surveys in spring 2004. Normandeau will also complete field work for the T-line and Project Facility Habitat Assessment and the IEPP Species Inventory in 2004.
At the October IAG meeting, Dana Bradshaw, Center for Conservation Biology, reviewed the results of the 2003 Bald Eagle and Great Blue Heron surveys. Dana will also be conducting field surveys for the Avian Inventory this year.
Aesthetics, and Shoreline Management IAG met several times during 2003 (March
13, April 10, July 9, and October 8) to finalize study plans for the Recreation
Use Assessment, Recreation Facility Inventory and Condition Assessment,
Recreation Economic Impact Study, Shoreline Management Plan Comparison, Overall
Project Aesthetic Study, and the Uwharrie National Forest Aesthetic Study (final
meeting summaries and study plans are available on Yadkin's website).
Yadkin plans to work with the IAG on a study plan for the Regional
Recreation Evaluation during the first half of this year. The IAG met most
ERM has been collecting recreation use data (visitor spot counts and use surveys, resident use surveys etc.) for almost a year. ERM will continue to collect use data through April 2004. ERM will use the recreation expenditure data collected in these surveys to determine the impacts of recreation on the economy. ERM has identified many Key Observation Points for the Overall Project Aesthetics Study and has documented these KOPs during the fall and winter 2003. These KOPs will also be photographed this spring. Draft study reports for these studies will be available during the second half of this year.
LVA is continuing work on the Recreation Facility Inventory and SMP Comparison Study. Preliminary data from the SMP Comparison Study was presented at the February 2004 meeting and draft study report is anticipated to be available to the IAG in March 2004.
In 2003, the Operations Model IAG met on March 14, September 4, and November 6 (final meeting summaries are available on Yadkin's website). PB Power and Hydrologics have been working with the IAG to explain how the OASIS model for use in the Yadkin Project relicensing is being developed, how the model operates, and what data inputs are being used. At the request of the IAG, Yadkin continues to pursue discussions with Progress Energy about the OASIS and CHEOPS models and the input data sets to be used.