NI43-101Pre-Feasibility Study Report - page 514

Rare Element Resources
Bear Lodge Project
Canadian NI 43-101 Technical Report
October 9
, 2014
10135-200-46 - Rev. 0
20 Environmental Studies, Permitting and Social or
Community Impacts
20.1 Introduction
Rare Element will be required to obtain approvals and permits to operate the Bull Hill
Mine and the Hydromet plant and tailings storage facility from the United States
Forest Service (USFS) and the Wyoming Department of Environmental Quality
(WDEQ), which includes air and water quality. In addition, a source materials
possession license will be required from the United States Nuclear Regulatory
Commission (NRC). In accordance with Rare Element’s Environmental, Health, and
Safety Policy, Rare Element will comply with applicable federal and state
environmental statutes, standards, regulations, and guidelines in the permitting of the
Bull Hill Mine and Hydromet plant/tailings storage facility (TSF). Environmental
baseline studies were initiated in 2011 at both the mine and plant locations and are
continuing in order to meet the federal and state permit requirements.
The approval to mine on USFS land will be a major federal action that is triggered
because of the proposed mine’s effects on the quality of the human environment in
the project area. The approval process requires the preparation of an environmental
impact statement (EIS) under the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA), Council
of Environmental Quality (CEQ) guidelines, and USFS NEPA procedures. The NRC
will assess the environmental impacts of the Hydromet plant/TSF under their NEPA
The primary path of permitting is through the NEPA process that includes public
scoping, identification of issues, alternative selection and impact analysis
documented in the draft and final EIS. The results of the NEPA process will be
documented in the Record of Decision issued by the USFS. There is a high degree of
cooperation between the agencies taking part in the NEPA process that include the
US Army Corps of Engineers, National Park Service, State of Wyoming regulatory
agencies, and Weston and Crook County governments. These agencies conference
weekly to discuss issues and receive updates on the progress of the EIS. Following
the issuance of the Record of Decision, Wyoming DEQ permits will be issued.
The following sections provide more detailed information on the USFS Plan of
Operations, the ongoing NEPA process, the ongoing baseline environmental
monitoring program, WDEQ permit and NRC license requirements.
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