Submission Number: UBR-DEIS-00246 

Received: 12/19/2020 7:17:18 PM
Commenter: Joan Degiorgio
State: Utah

Agency: STB
Initiative: Uinta Basin Railway EIS
Attachments: No Attachments
Submission Text
Thank you for the opportunity to comment. I am opposed to this project for many reasons including: 1) RARE PLANTS For a number of years I worked in the Uinta Basin for a conservation organization working specifically on rare plant conservation. The impacts from this project on these plants, which occur nowhere else in the world, from oil and gas development is concerning. In reality, we barely know where these plants exists, much less what they need to survive. In reality the only mitigation strategy is to avoid. But even this may not be enough as we really don't know how they interact with the environment. These plants are an incredible heritage that we are losing. While they are often regarded as the "last of the least", I encourage you to give serious consideration to any loss of these species. CUMULATIVE IMPACT: It is difficult to really account for the cumulative impact of increased oil and gas production that this railway will enable. One thing we can measure it air quality that already exceeds federal standards. More indirectly, we know use of fossil fuels contributes to green house gases and increased climate change. At what point does someone say NO Uinta Basin interests that continue to promote an industry that is marginal at best and is cumulatively eroding the natural heritage of the Basin.WATER: As the second driest state in the Union and with a large percentage of Utah's wildlife depending on stream, riparian and wetland resources; plus, the impacts these systems have already endured, the permanent disturbances on water resources caused by the railroad are concerning. What are the loses to these resources that have occurred already statewide? At this point, even small losses are meaningful.