Public input sought on massive infrastructure upgrade construction work at Andersen

254
Andersen Air Force Base (PNC file photo)

The U.S. Air Force (Air Force) is conducting public scoping for the proposal to construct infrastructure upgrades at Andersen Air Force Base (AFB), Guam, and to use this infrastructure consistent with existing installation operations once construction is completed.

The purpose of this Proposed Action is to enhance Andersen AFB’s capability to support permanent and rotational forces within the Indo-Pacific and strengthen the U.S.’s ability to respond regionally and worldwide, in alignment with evolving Air Force and Department of Defense initiatives for the region. This Proposed Action is needed to meet national security objectives and improve Andersen AFB’s ability to support the mission requirements for permanent and rotational aircraft in the face of evolving global security challenges.

Under this proposal, the Air Force is considering new infrastructure upgrades adjacent to the northwest corner of the airfield and within the munitions storage area at Andersen AFB.

Construction of upgrades would take place over approximately 7 years and would include airfield pavements, an aircraft hangar, maintenance and utilities buildings, fuel systems, fencing and utilities, roadways and parking, stormwater management infrastructure, and earth-covered magazines.

Approximately 204 total acres would be disturbed during construction, which would either be developed sites or maintained vegetation once construction is complete. The Air Force considered other locations on Andersen AFB for construction of infrastructure upgrades; however, only the Proposed Action locations were determined to meet the criteria for the infrastructure upgrades.

ENVIRONMENTAL IMPACT STATEMENT (EIS). Pursuant to the National Environmental Policy Act, the Air Force will prepare an EIS, which will assess the potential environmental consequences of the proposed infrastructure upgrades at Andersen AFB, Guam.

The Air Force is the lead agency for the EIS, and the U.S. Navy is a cooperating agency. The Air Force will conduct cultural and natural resources surveys in the areas proposed for upgrades, and consult with appropriate resource agencies to determine the potential for significant impacts on those resources.

Consultation will be incorporated into preparation of the Draft EIS and will include, but not be limited to, consultation under Section 7 of the Endangered Species Act and consultation under Section 106 of the National Historic Preservation Act. During construction, the Air Force anticipates an increased demand on the construction workforce and an increase in local spending. Currently, no other short- or long-term notable impacts are anticipated. Additional analysis will be provided in the Draft EIS, which is anticipated in late 2021 or early 2022. The Final EIS and a decision on the Proposed Action are expected in mid to late 2022.

PUBLIC SCOPING. The Air Force encourages interested local, territorial, and federal elected officials and agencies, as well as interested members of the public and others, to participate in public scoping for the proposal and assist the Air Force in identifying issues to evaluate in the EIS.

Due to public health concerns related to COVID-19, the Air Force will not hold in-person public scoping meetings. Public scoping is being accomplished remotely, in accordance with the 2020 version of 40 Code of Federal Regulations Part 1506.6, via the project website at www.AAFBInfrastructureEIS.com. The website provides posters, a presentation, an informational brochure in English and Chamorro, other meeting materials, and a capability for the public to provide public scoping comments. Scoping materials are also available in print at the Nieves M. Flores Memorial Library (254 Martyr Street, Hagåtña, Guam). Requests for printed scoping materials may also be made to the addresses below. For printed material requests, the standard U.S. Postal Service shipping timeline will apply. Please consider the environment before requesting printed material.

PUBLIC COMMENT. The Air Force welcomes comments, suggestions, and relevant information on the proposal, to include potential alternatives and the forthcoming analyses. Please submit comments in English by visiting www.AAFBInfrastructureEIS.com, sending an email to AAFBInfrastructure.EIS@us.af.mil, or sending via postal mail to 36th Civil Engineer Squadron, ATTN: CEV (AAFB Infrastructure EIS), Unit 14007, APO, AP 96543-4007. The Air Force also welcomes comments under Section 106 of the National Historic Preservation Act (36 Code of Federal Regulations Part 800) regarding the identification of or effects on historic properties, or regarding requests to become a consulting party in the Section 106 process.

To ensure the Air Force has sufficient time to consider public input in the Draft EIS and the Section 106 process, please submit comments by May 30, 2021 at www.AAFBInfrastructureEIS.com

(36th Wing Public Affairs Release)

##