APPENDIX C

NPS Intensity Definitions

As stated in the DEIS: “Determining intensity definitions is a common method in applying Director’s Order 12 (NPS, 2001).”

NPS defined the impacts as following:

“The following terms are used for all impact topics:

Beneficial: A positive change in the condition or appearance of the resource or a change that moves the resource toward a desired condition.

Adverse: A change that moves the resource away from a desired condition or detracts from its appearance or condition.

Direct: An impact that is caused by an action and occurs at the same time and place.

Indirect: An impact that is caused by an action but is later in time or farther removed in distance, but still reasonably foreseeable.”

The DEIS distinguishes between short-term and long-term impacts in the following way:

Short-term: Impacts that last a relatively brief time following an action and/or are temporary in nature.

Short-term impacts typically are less than 1 year in duration.

Long-term: Impacts that last a relatively long time following an action and/or may be permanent. Long-term impacts typically are longer than 1 year in duration.”

The context distinctions the DEIS uses are as follows:

Local: The impact would occur within the general vicinity of the project area.

Regional: The impact would affect localities, cities, or towns surrounding the Seashore.”

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Intensity Definitions

Wetlands

“Minor: Impacts would be localized and slightly detectable, but would not affect the overall structure of any natural community.

Moderate: Impacts would be clearly detectable and could appreciably affect individuals or groups of species, communities, or natural processes.

Major: Impacts would be highly noticeable and would substantially influence natural resources, e.g., individuals or groups of species, communities, or natural processes.”

Eelgrass

“Minor: Impacts would be localized and slightly detectable, but would not affect the overall structure of any natural community. Impacts would not result in a measurable change to eelgrass ecosystem health on a local or regional scale.

Moderate: Impacts would be clearly detectable and could appreciably affect individual plants, eelgrass beds, or natural processes (such as eelgrass colonization and/or regeneration). Impacts would result in measurable changes to eelgrass ecosystem health. Measurable changes could include modifications in biomass or in the diversity of species that typically use eelgrass beds for foraging or nursery grounds.

Major: Impacts would be highly noticeable and would substantially influence natural resources, e.g., individuals or individual plants, eelgrass beds, or natural processes (such as eelgrass colonization and/or regeneration). Impacts would result in substantial changes to eelgrass



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APPENDIX C NPS Intensity Definitions As stated in the DEIS: "Determining intensity definitions is a common method in applying Director's Order 12 (NPS, 2001)." NPS defined the impacts as following: "The following terms are used for all impact topics: Beneficial: A positive change in the condition or appearance of the resource or a change that moves the resource toward a desired condition. Adverse: A change that moves the resource away from a desired condition or detracts from its appearance or condition. Direct: An impact that is caused by an action and occurs at the same time and place. Indirect: An impact that is caused by an action but is later in time or farther removed in distance, but still reasonably foreseeable." The DEIS distinguishes between short-term and long-term impacts in the following way: "Short-term: Impacts that last a relatively brief time following an action and/or are temporary in nature. Short-term impacts typically are less than 1 year in duration. Long-term: Impacts that last a relatively long time following an action and/or may be permanent. Long- term impacts typically are longer than 1 year in duration." The context distinctions the DEIS uses are as follows: "Local: The impact would occur within the general vicinity of the project area. Regional: The impact would affect localities, cities, or towns surrounding the Seashore." Intensity Definitions Wetlands "Minor: Impacts would be localized and slightly detectable, but would not affect the overall structure of any natural community. Moderate: Impacts would be clearly detectable and could appreciably affect individuals or groups of species, communities, or natural processes. Major: Impacts would be highly noticeable and would substantially influence natural resources, e.g., individuals or groups of species, communities, or natural processes." Eelgrass "Minor: Impacts would be localized and slightly detectable, but would not affect the overall structure of any natural community. Impacts would not result in a measurable change to eelgrass ecosystem health on a local or regional scale. Moderate: Impacts would be clearly detectable and could appreciably affect individual plants, eelgrass beds, or natural processes (such as eelgrass colonization and/or regeneration). Impacts would result in measurable changes to eelgrass ecosystem health. Measurable changes could include modifications in biomass or in the diversity of species that typically use eelgrass beds for foraging or nursery grounds. Major: Impacts would be highly noticeable and would substantially influence natural resources, e.g., individuals or individual plants, eelgrass beds, or natural processes (such as eelgrass colonization and/or regeneration). Impacts would result in substantial changes to eelgrass 69

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70 Appendix C ecosystem health, which would be evident through large-scale changes in ecological indicators such as biomass or in the diversity of species that typically use eelgrass beds for foraging or nursery grounds." Wildlife and Wildlife Habitat: Benthic Fauna "Minor: Impacts would be localized and slightly detectable, but would not affect the overall structure of any natural community. Moderate: Impacts would be clearly detectable and could appreciably affect individuals or groups of species, communities, or natural processes. Major: Impacts would be highly noticeable and would substantially influence natural resources, e.g., individuals or groups of species, communities, or natural processes." Wildlife and Wildlife Habitat: Fish "Minor: Impacts would be localized and slightly detectable, but would not affect the overall structure of any natural community. Moderate: Impacts would be clearly detectable and could appreciably affect individuals or groups of species, communities, or natural processes. Major: Impacts would be highly noticeable and would substantially influence natural resources, e.g., individuals or groups of species, communities, or natural processes." Wildlife and Wildlife Habitat: Harbor Seals "Minor: Impacts would be localized and slightly detectable, but would not affect the overall structure of any natural community. Moderate: Impacts would be clearly detectable and could appreciably affect individuals or groups of species, communities, or natural processes. Major: Impacts would be highly noticeable and would substantially influence natural resources, e.g., individuals or groups of species, communities, or natural processes." Wildlife and Wildlife Habitat: Birds "Minor: Impacts would be localized and slightly detectable, but would not affect the overall structure of any natural community. Moderate: Impacts would be clearly detectable and could appreciably affect individuals or groups of species, communities, or natural processes. Major: Impacts would be highly noticeable and would substantially influence natural resources, e.g., individuals or groups of species, communities, or natural processes." Special-Status Species "Minor: The action could result in a change to a population or individuals of a species or designated critical habitat. Moderate: The action would result in some change to a population or individuals of a species or designated critical habitat. Major: The action would result in a noticeable change to a population or individuals of a species or designated critical habitat." Coastal Flood Zones "Minor: The action would take place within the floodplain or flood zone, but would not result in an increase in potential flood damage to other areas, or is exempt from NPS floodplain management guidelines. Moderate: The action would take place within the floodplain or flood zone and would result in increased potential for flood damage to property or environmental contamination at the project site. Major: The action would have a measurable impact on potential flood damage or environmental contamination to the site as well as adjacent and downstream properties."

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Appendix C 71 Water Quality "Minor: Minor water quality impacts would include temporary, localized impacts that may or may not be detectable, would not have long-lasting effects on water quality, and would be within historical or desired water quality conditions. Moderate: Moderate impacts are short-term and long-term detectable impacts that would change the chemical, physical, or biological integrity of water quality to the degree that the action would alter the historical baseline or desired water quality conditions of Drakes Estero. Major: Major impacts are short-term and long-term detectable impacts that would change the chemical, physical, or biological integrity of waters of Drakes Estero to the degree that the action would alter the historical baseline or desired water quality conditions." Soundscapes "Minor: Human-caused noise would be at a level that causes vocal communication to be difficult between people separated by more than 32 feet, and the natural soundscape is interfered with less than 5 percent of the time. Moderate: Human-caused noise would be at a level that causes vocal communication to be difficult between people separated by 32 to 16 feet, and the natural soundscape is interfered with 5 to 10 percent of the time. Major: Human-caused noise would be at a level that causes vocal communication to be difficult between people separated by less than 16 feet, and the natural soundscape is interfered with more than 10 percent of the time." Socioeconomics "Minor: Impacts may be detectable but would not affect the overall regional economy or the statewide production of shellfish. Moderate: Impacts would be clearly detectable but would not considerably affect the regional economy or the statewide production of shellfish. Major: Impacts would be highly noticeable and would substantially influence the regional economy or the statewide production of shellfish."

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