Livestock Grazing on Three BLM Allotments – No. 4108, No. 4141, and No. 4199, Environmental Assessments

UltraSystems prepared three separate environmental assessments EAs, on behalf of the Bureau of Land Management, for a ten-year permit to authorize livestock grazing on three parcels totaling approximately 400 acres. The project satisfied requirements of Title 43 Part 4110, Section 2 of the Code of Federal Regulations (CFR); the Taylor Grazing Act; Public Rangelands Improvement Act; and Federal Land Policy and Management Act. UltraSystems conducted technical studies, including assessment of biological resources, cultural resources, water quality, and air quality, and proposed mitigation measures to reduce potentially significant effects to less than significant, per NEPA guidelines. In addition to preparation of the EAs, UltraSystems prepared grazing management plans to analyze identified rangeland health issues and address conformity to the Secretary of the Interior-approved Rangeland Health Standards and Guidelines for Livestock Grazing Management , in the Bakersfield District. Pursuant to Section 7 of the federal Endangered Species Act (ESA), UltraSystems conducted formal Section 7 consultation with the United States Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) to ensure that no federally-listed species were affected by the livestock grazing activity. UltraSystems performed several such studies on behalf of BLM for livestock grazing permits.

Under a three-year, on-call service contract, UltraSystems provided the following services:

  • Conducted necessary biological resource surveys;
  • Identified the extent of jurisdictional wetlands/waters of the United States, per the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (1987) Manual;
  • Established appropriate mitigation, per methods of assigning mitigation ratios for impacts;
  • Identified, evaluated, and developed mitigation plans for impacted waters and wetlands;
  • Prepared appropriate State and federal regulatory permit/agreement applications or notices; and
  • Completed initial studies and subsequent environmental documentation in compliance with     CEQA.

UltraSystems also provided biological surveys to obtain the required Clean Water Act Section 404 Permit or Nationwide Permit from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers; the Section 1603 Streambed Alteration Agreement from the California Department of Fish and Game; Section 401 Water Quality Discharge Permit from the Regional Water Quality Control Board; and the Coastal Zone Management Consistency approval from the Coastal Commission.

A representative list of the tasks performed under this contract included:

  • Santa Ana River, Vegetation Mapping and LBV Surveys
  • O’Neill Park and Antonio Parkway Extension, Annual Arundo Monitoring
  • Modjeska Canyon, Mitigation Sites Vegetation Survey and Mapping
  • Aliso & Woods Canyon, Mitigation Sites Vegetation Surveys and Mapping
  • San Diego Creek (Between 1-405 & Campus Drive),Tree Census and Mapping
  • Sand Diego Creek (Between I-405 & Campus Drive), Vegetation Assessment and Mapping