Date of this Version
U.S. Department of the Interior, Bureau of Reclamation, Great Plains Region
The Northwest Area Water Supply Project (Project) in North Dakota is a municipal, rural, and industrial water supply project authorized by the Garrison Diversion Reformulation Act of 1986 as amended by the Dakota Water Resources Act of 2000. The Project has been under consideration and partial construction since 2002 and if completed, would resolve long-standing water supply and water quality problems in a ten-county area in northwestern North Dakota. The Project would provide a reliable, high quality water supply to serve the projected population through 2060. Construction of Project facilities began in 2002 after the Bureau of Reclamation (Reclamation) completed an environmental assessment and finding of no significant impact, and the Secretary of the Interior signed a determination of compliance with the Boundary Waters Treaty of 1909. By 2010, 45 miles of buried main transmission pipeline from Lake Sakakawea to Minot had been built along with several segments of the originally planned distribution system. Reclamation prepared this draft supplemental environmental impact statement (Draft SEIS) to evaluate and update the estimated future water needs through 2060 and to examine a full range of reasonable alternatives to meet this future need. Analyses presented in the prior environmental assessment and environmental impact statement (EIS) were updated and the potential effects of global climate change were evaluated. These analyses were used to compare the impacts of completing the Project (action alternatives) to the consequences of the future without further Reclamation funding for the Project (No Action Alternative). Cooperating agencies assisting in the preparation of the Draft SEIS include the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, North Dakota State Water Commission, City of Minot, and Garrison Diversion Conservancy District. The Draft SEIS supplements the 2008 Final EIS on Water Treatment.