Oct 14, 2009

Here comes that Sears Island umbrella again!

The word on the bay is that MDOT has just shipped out to the federal agencies the state's new umbrella mitigation plan for MDOT. The previous one offering 2/3 of dismembered Sears Island as the first "deposit" in its mitigation bank, was sent packing some months ago.  What must MDOT Commissioner Cole be thinking this time? What has he come up with?

It better be something new. For according to one federal agency staffer, "so far, there has been good overall agreement between the Corps, EPA, NOAA, and [US Fish and Wildlife Service]  that little or no credit should be given for direct wetland impacts in exchange for the preservation of 600 acres of Sears Island. "

In response, Senator Dennis Damon and his Transportation Committee members are hopping mad. They are discovering that they may well have been suckered by Governor B and the ecoyuppies. If they thought that giving  the Land Trusters 601 acres of Sears Island was going to allow logging clearing blasting, paving and dredging within the 340 acre industrial zone, then they were mistaken. Sorry. Nope. Not in the eyes of God or the Army Corps of Engineers.

The fedsters did allow that  "indirect impacts (fragmentation, non-point source runoff) from MEDOT projects would make sense for credit."  But not compensating for the Godzilla footprint a containerport like this would have on Sears Island.

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