The National Environmental Policy Act requires federal agencies to evaluate a range of reasonable alternatives to achieve the purpose and need of the Proposed Action. Two “action” alternatives (Alternative 1 and Alternative 2) that meet the Navy’s purpose and need are currently under consideration. Analysis of a “no action” alternative is also required. These alternatives were analyzed to help determine the appropriate level and type of training and testing activities to meet the Navy’s requirements.
No Action Alternative
Navy training activities currently conducted at the FRTC, presented as the No Action Alternative, have been ongoing at various levels and frequencies since the 1940s. Training data for the period 2010–2012 were compiled and reviewed by Navy subject matter experts to establish baseline training activities for analysis under the No Action Alternative. The numbers for annual training activities analyzed under the No Action Alternative are based on annual averages calculated from the 2010–2012 training data. Under the No Action Alternative, the Navy would maintain the baseline level of training activities. Analysis of the No Action Alternative enables decision makers to compare the magnitude of the environmental effects of no action (current activities) to the effects of the action alternatives.
Alternative 1, in addition to accommodating training activities addressed in the No Action Alternative, would support an approximately 6 percent increase in the types of training activities and the number of training events conducted at FRTC, and accommodate force structure changes. The specific activities that contribute to this overall 6 percent increase are Combat Search and Rescue exercises, Gunnery Exercise (Air-to-Ground), High-speed Anti-radiation Missile Exercises, and Missile Exercises (Air-to-Ground). In addition, two new activities, Ground LASER Targeting and Dismounted Fire and Maneuver, would be conducted under Alternative 1.
Alternative 2 (Preferred Alternative)
Alternative 2 would include all training elements of Alternative 1 (accommodating currently conducted and increased training activities) for a 16 percent increase in levels identified under the No Action Alternative. Under Alternative 2, training activities of the types currently conducted would be increased by 10 percent over levels identified in Alternative 1.
Environmental Resources Analyzed for the Draft and Final EIS
The FRTC Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) includes an analysis of potential impacts on various environmental resources including biological resources, geology, soils and water resources, land use and recreation, air quality, noise, cultural resources, transportation, socioeconomics, environmental justice, and public health and safety. The Navy is seeking input on the Fallon Range Training Complex EIS, including the Proposed Action and alternatives, and the accuracy and adequacy of the environmental analysis.