The USDA Forest Service, Six Rivers National Forest (SRNF or forest) has prepared the Six Rivers Aquatic Restoration Project (Aquatic Restoration Project) Draft Environmental Assessment (draft EA), to disclose the environmental analysis of a proposal to accelerate recovery of north coast salmon populations (federally listed threatened coho salmon, steelhead and Chinook salmon), other Forest Service aquatic species and water quality. This assessment was guided by the California Office of Planning and Research 2014 guidance NEPA and CEQA: Integrating Federal and State Environmental Reviews which encourages federal, state and local agencies to coordinate the NEPA and CEQA process so that one environmental document is prepared that meets the requirements for both CEQA and NEPA. The draft EA discloses a range of alternatives and predicted effects of No Action (Alternative 1) compared to the modified Proposed Action (Alternative 2), in compliance with the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA; 42 USC 4321 et seq.) and the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA; California Public Resources Code (CPRC) §21000 et seq.).
Alternative 2 represents a programmatic, iterative approach to implementing a suite of phased, forest-wide instream and riparian restoration activities as a step toward fulfilling tribal trust responsibilities, and obligations to local communities, recreationists and commercial fishing industries, SRNF and Klamath National Forest (KNF) land and resource management plans (LRMP or forest plans), and state and federal recovery plan goals (NMFS 2014, CDFG 2004). Alternative 2 aims to rectify and compensate for past natural and human-caused disturbances to aquatic and riparian resources, regardless of the disturbance agent (e.g., floods, landslides, recreational uses, and introduction of invasive plants) by implementing a suite of phased, forest-wide instream and riparian restoration activities.