September 13, 2011
Yosemite National Park Superintendent Don Neubacher announces that the Invasive Plant Management Plan Update Environmental Assessment (IPMP Update) Finding of No Significant Impact (FONSI) is available for public review. The decision of the National Park Service (NPS) to adopt a plan for protecting park natural and cultural resources from non-native invasive species is described in the Selected Action of the FONSI. Alternative 2 of the IPMP Update (Add Four Herbicides and Address Limitations of Existing Plan) has been determined not to have a significant effect on the human environment.
The purpose of the IPMP Update is to build upon the 2008 Invasive Plant Management Plan (2008 IPMP) in order to better protect the park's natural and cultural resources from invasive plants. Like the existing plan, it provides a framework for programmatic invasive plant management decision-making, and continues invasive plant management efforts that were began in the 1930s by the Civilian Conservation Corps. The IPMP Update adds four herbicides for use in the park and addresses limitations in the 2008 IPMP. Individual patch size and density limits for herbicide use, which limited ability to treat infestations while they are still small were removed. Also, methods were refined for treating invasive species in sensitive areas such as traditional gathering areas, near water, and in designated wilderness.
The IPMP Update was available for public review from December 15, 2010 through January 30, 2011. Public comments and NPS responses are documented in the Invasive Plant Management Plan Update Plan Public Comment and Response Report. Clarifications, corrections and changes made to the IPMP Update following its release and public review are described in the Errata Sheets. The documents mentioned here are available electronically through the National Park Service's Planning, Environment, and Public Comment system (PEPC) at http://parkplanning.nps.gov/projectHome.cfm?parkID=347&projectId=23812.
Implementation of the 2010 Update will begin in September of 2011. Work plans, which notify the public about the times, locations, methods and tools for planned management efforts, will be posted for public review before the start of each treatment season. These plans are available on the Invasive Plant Management Program web page at http://www.nps.gov/yose/naturescience/invasive-plant-management.htm.
More information about the Invasive Plant Management Program Plan can be accessed from the Yosemite at http://www.nps.gov/yose/parkmgmt/invasive.htm. Printed copies of the FONSI are available, and requests can be submitted by mail to: Superintendent, Yosemite National Park, Attention: Invasive Plant Management Plan Update, P.O. Box 577, Yosemite, CA 95389; or fax (209) 379-1294.
Yosemite National Park will host the next monthly Open House on Wednesday, September 28, 2011, from 1:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. in the Valley Visitor Center Auditorium behind the Yosemite Valley Visitor Center. Copies of the FONSI will be available. Park staff will be present to answer questions regarding this and other park planning efforts.