generation plant five miles away; the likely alternative sources of supply are mines in Montana and Wyoming.
10. The injunction, modified as proposed, would also allow the Department to prepare an environmental impact statement on competitive coal lease application W 50061. That application proposes a lease to supply coal for an electric utility in Illinois. Additional investigation is needed to resolve questions which can be best answered by the preparation of an impact statement on the proposal. These questions relate primarily to the availability of other sources of coal, particularly eastern coal.
11. The injunction, if modified as proposed, would also allow the federal defendants to examine all pending preference right lease applications to determine whether the applications were timely filed and meet other threshold criteria of Section 2(b) of the Mineral Leasing Act. On the other hand, because these determinations do not commit the federal defendants to grant the applications, these determinations would not commit the Secretary to any position which might be inconsistent with policy decisions he may make after consideration of the final programmatic environmental impact statement. Under the modified order a limited number of preference right lease applications could be fully processed. Because these applications cannot be granted and leases issued, federal defendants will not commit themselves by this processing to actions which might be inconsistent with policy decisions made after consideration of the final programmatic environmental impact statement. To help insure that the cumulative effects of these applications would not effect evaluation of programmatic issues, the applications to be selected are those under which mining would lead to the least environmental impact.
12. The injunction, if modified as proposed, would clarify that the federal defendants may continue to engage in general studies and general analyses, and may prepare national and regional environmental impact statements on federal coal leasing. The proposed modification would also clarify that the federal defendants may also continue comprehensive land use planning under the Federal Land Policy and Management Act of 1976, 90 Stat. 2743, a statutory responsibility which affects many activities other than coal.
II. Utah Power and Light Company
13. According to certain information submitted to the Department by Utah Power and Light Company, entitled "Proposed Steam Electric Generating Plant Development Report " (November 5, 1976) in connection with the Regional Environmental Impact Statements for Central and Southern Utah, Utah Power and Light proposes a power system with three parts: (1) a coal mine which would use coal in the lands covered by its preference rights lease applications in Utah; (2) a 200-mile railroad; and (3) two coal-fired generating facilities. (Selected pages of this document are attached as shown below) [attachment omitted from publication].
14. As of 1976, this development was being planned to meet projected power demand for the period 1986 through 1991.
15. If the railroad is built, it would be used to deliver not only that coal mined from the lands covered by Utah Power and Light's lease applications, but also coal mined from other new mines on nearby lands. See attachment page 1-10 [attachment omitted from publication]. Utah Power and Light Company expects to produce more than seven million tons of coal annually from its mines alone. See attachment page 2-1 [attachment omitted from publication].
16. The railroad line will cross the Dixie National Forest and pass through varied terrain, characterized by buttes, mesas, cliffs, washes and steep canyons. See attachment page 1-12 [attachment omitted from publication]. The totally new construction portion of the railroad may require three bridges, and seven tunnels which may be almost three and one-half miles long. See attachment table 4-2 [attachment omitted from publication].
17. The environmental impact of such a railroad has not been fully evaluated.
18. The area of the proposed lease is now sparsely populated; the present land-uses are primarily grazing and recreational. See, attachment pages 3-18 and 3-19 [attachments omitted from publication]. The construction of the railroad and the start-up of large-scale coal mining in this area can be expected to have major social and economic impacts in the area.
19. The property covered by its applications is probably not the only source of coal available to meet the Company's power needs. Utah Power and Light itself has made an analysis of a number of alternatives to leasing of this federal coal which could be used to meet its projected power demands. See attachment pages 7-1, 7-2, 7-6, 7-14, 7-24, 7-35, 7-43, 7-53, 7-61 [attachments omitted from publication].
20. Prior to issuing any of the leases that would be authorized under the proposed modification, the Department will for each of the applications comply with all of the requirements of the Mineral Leasing Act of 1920, as amended, the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969, and other pertinent statutes. Full and complete analysis of the facts concerning the involved leases must await those actions.
21. In my opinion the proposed modification of the injunction properly balances public interests in energy production with the protection of the environment until the programmatic impact statement is completed.
/s/ GUY MARTIN
Subscribed and sworn to before me this 3rd day of April, 1978.
/s/ Richard R. Lee
My commission expires April 14, 1982.