Public Notice


Published Oct. 3, 2017
Expiration date: 11/2/2017


Issue Date: October 3, 2017

Comment Deadline: November 2, 2017

Corps Action ID Number: SAW-2017-02000

The Wilmington District, Corps of Engineers (Corps) received an application from the United States Marine Corps Base-Camp Lejeune seeking Department of the Army authorization to discharge fill and associated wetland forest conversion, for the development of Battle Site Zero (BZO) range adjacent to Tank Range SR-10 in Onslow County, North Carolina.

Specific plans and location information are described below and shown on the attached plans. This Public Notice and all attached plans are also available on the Wilmington District Web Site at:

Applicant: USMC-Camp Lejeune

Attn: Mr. John Townson, Director Environment Management

Marine Corps Installations East-Marine Corps Base

PSC Box 20005

Camp Lejeune, North Carolina 28542-0005

AGENT (if applicable): Avolis Engineering, PA

Attn: Mr. Joseph Avolis

Post Office Box 15564

New Bern, North Carolina 28561


The Corps evaluates this application and decides whether to issue, conditionally issue, or deny the proposed work pursuant to applicable procedures of the following Statutory Authorities:

Section 404 of the Clean Water Act (33 U.S.C. 1344)

US Army Corps Of Engineers

Wilmington District


Location Description: The project area is located within the Greater Sandy Run Area (GSRA), 42,000-acre training ground, located north of Holly Ridge bordered on the east side by US 17 and on the west side by NC Hwy 50. Specifically, the project is located along the east side of the existing Tank Range (SR-10).

Project Area (acres): 26.04 Nearest Town: Holly Ridge

Nearest Waterway: Juniper Swamp River Basin: Cape Fear

Latitude and Longitude: 34.5603 N, -77.5494 W

Existing Site Conditions

The proposed BZO is located at SR-10 (an existing Tank Range) within the lower half of the GSRA training area. SR-10 is approximately 650 acres in size and the new BZO would be located along the southeast corner of SR-10. SR-10 is cleared with a series of targets and access roads while the BZO is currently forested with a combination of mature Pine and scrub shrub sub canopy.

Applicant’s Stated Purpose

The applicant states the purpose is to develop a range to calibrate tank weaponry prior to moving onto the adjacent SR-10 tank range for live training. The BZO range will make the range operations more efficient from ammunition and range utilization perspectives by conducting these functions prior to moving onto the actual SR-10 range for live gunnery training.

Project Description

Camp Lejeune proposes to permanently fill 3.74 acres of Section 404 wetlands to construct three gravel access drives consisting of one firing point and two target locations. The 22.3 acres of forested area between the drives will be maintained using Best Management Practices for Vegetation Cutting in Wetlands. This practice involves cutting the vegetation above ground without having soil disturbance during the clearing process. This initial clearing will be maintained to accomplish a clear line of site through the range.

The project has three separate areas consisting of an armored tank bore sighting and firing area and two down range target areas. All three include gravel access drives. The firing area includes a 30' x 255' gravel drive and a 63' x 164' concrete pad for tanks to position on for firing. The first target area is located 1,670' down range and includes a 15' x 350' gravel access drive and a 255' x 51' protective berm. The second target area is located 2,645' down range and includes 20' x 390' gravel drive and an 80' x 376' earthen berm to protect the target supports and the gravel access drive from tank projectiles.

Avoidance and Minimization

The applicant provided the following information in support of efforts to avoid and/or minimize impacts to the aquatic environment: The project area is sized at the minimumfootprint to accomplish the mission for a company of tanks. The location of the facility is where it will not interfere with other SR-10 tank range training operations. All areas around the tank range consist primarily of wetlands. See additional information in the Finding of No Significant Impact (FONSI) and Environmental Assessment (EA) electronically attached to the Public Notice, web address above.

Compensatory Mitigation

The applicant offered the following compensatory mitigation plan to offset unavoidable functional loss to the aquatic environment: USMC-Camp Lejeune has developed a mitigation bank within the Greater Sandy Run Area to offset future permit needs. This is an established bank with all credits released. For this proposed action, the Base has offered mitigation from the bank at 2:1 for the loss of wetlands and 0.5 to 1 for the permanent wetland conversion from forested to scrub shrub habitat.

Essential Fish Habitat

Pursuant to the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act, this Public Notice initiates the Essential Fish Habitat (EFH) consultation requirements. The Corps’ initial determination is that the proposed project would not effect EFH or associated fisheries managed by the South Atlantic or Mid Atlantic Fishery Management Councils or the National Marine Fisheries Service.

Cultural Resources

Pursuant to Section 106 of the National Historic Preservation Act of 1966, Appendix C of 33 CFR Part 325, and the 2005 Revised Interim Guidance for Implementing Appendix C, the District Engineer consulted district files and records and the latest published version of the National Register of Historic Places and initially determines that:

No historic properties, nor properties eligible for inclusion in the National  Register, are present within the Corps’ permit area; therefore, there will be no historic properties affected. The Corps subsequently requests concurrence from the SHPO (or THPO). This determination was made by the Base Archaeologist. 

The District Engineer’s final eligibility and effect determination will be based upon coordination with the SHPO and/or THPO, as appropriate and required, and with full consideration given to the proposed undertaking’s potential direct and indirect effects on historic properties within the Corps-indentified permit area.

Endangered Species

Pursuant to the Endangered Species Act of 1973, the Corps reviewed the project area, examined all information provided by the applicant and consulted the latest North Carolina Natural Heritage Database. Based on available information: The Corps determines that the proposed project would not affect federally listed endangered or threatened species or their formally designated critical habitat.

The Corps is not aware of the presence of species listed as threatened or endangered or their critical habitat formally designated pursuant to the Endangered Species Act of 1973 (ESA) within the project area. The Corps will make a final determination on the effects of the proposed project upon additional review of the project and completion of any necessary biological assessment and/or consultation with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and/or National Marine Fisheries Service.

Based on the Heritage database there are occurrences of Lysimachia asperulifolia (Rough-leaf loosestrife) approximately 8,000 feet north of the project area and 6,000 feet east of the project area.

Other Required Authorizations

The Corps forwards this notice and all applicable application materials to the appropriate State agencies for review.

North Carolina Division of Water Resources (NCDWR): The Corps will generally not make a final permit decision until the NCDWR issues, denies, or waives the state Certification as required by Section 401 of the Clean Water Act (PL 92-500). The receipt of the application and this public notice, combined with the appropriate application fee, at the NCDWR Central Office in Raleigh constitutes initial receipt of an application for a 401 Certification. A waiver will be deemed to occur if the NCDWR fails to act on this request for certification within sixty days of receipt of a complete application. Additional information regarding the 401 Certification may be reviewed at the NCDWR Central Office, 401 and Buffer Permitting Unit, 512 North Salisbury Street, Raleigh, North Carolina 27604-2260. All persons desiring to make comments regarding the application for a 401 Certification should do so, in writing, by October 28, 2017 to:

NCDWR Central Office

Attention: Ms. Karen Higgins, 401 and Buffer Permitting Unit

(USPS mailing address): 1617 Mail Service Center, Raleigh, NC 27699-1617


(physical address): 512 North Salisbury Street, Raleigh, North Carolina 27604

North Carolina Division of Coastal Management (NCDCM):

The application included a certification that the proposed work complies with and would be conducted in a manner that is consistent with the approved North Carolina Coastal Zone Management Program. Pursuant to 33 CFR 325.2 (b)(2) the Corps cannot issue a Department of Army (DA) permit for the proposed work until the applicant submits such a certification to the Corps and the NCDCM, and the NCDCM notifies the Corps that it concurs with the applicant’s consistency certification. As the application included the consistency certification, the Corps requests, via this Public Notice, concurrence or objection from the NCDCM.


The decision whether to issue a permit will be based on an evaluation of the probable impacts including cumulative impacts of the proposed activity on the public interest. That decision will reflect the national concern for both protection and utilization of important resources. The benefit which reasonably may be expected to accrue from the proposal must be balanced against its reasonably foreseeable detriments. All factors which may be relevant to the proposal will be considered including the cumulative effects thereof; among those are conservation, economics, aesthetics, general environmental concerns, wetlands, historic properties, fish and wildlife values, flood hazards, flood plain values (in accordance with Executive Order 11988), land use, navigation, shoreline erosion and accretion, recreation, water supply and conservation, water quality, energy needs, safety, food and fiber production, mineral needs, considerations of property ownership, and, in general, the needs and welfare of the people. For activities involving the discharge of dredged or fill materials in waters of the United States, the evaluation of the impact of the activity on the public interest will include application of the Environmental Protection Agency’s 404(b)(1) guidelines.

Commenting Information

The Corps of Engineers is soliciting comments from the public; Federal, State and local agencies and officials, including any consolidated State Viewpoint or written position of the Governor; Indian Tribes and other interested parties in order to consider and evaluate the impacts of this proposed activity. Any comments received will be considered by the Corps of Engineers to determine whether to issue, modify, condition or deny a permit for this proposal. To make this decision, comments are used to assess impacts on endangered species, historic properties, water quality, general environmental effects and the other public interest factors listed above. Comments are used in the preparation of an Environmental Assessment (EA) and/or an Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) pursuant to the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA). Comments are also used to determine the need for a public hearing and to determine the overall public interest of the proposed activity.

Any person may request, in writing, within the comment period specified in this notice, that a public hearing be held to consider the application. Requests for public hearings shall state, with particularity, the reasons for holding a public hearing. Requests for a public hearing will be granted, unless the District Engineer determines that the issues raised are insubstantial or there is otherwise no valid interest to be served by a hearing. The Corps of Engineers, Wilmington District will receive written comments pertinent to the proposed work, as outlined above, until 5pm, November 2, 2017. Comments should be submitted to Brad Shaver, Wilmington Regulatory Field Office, Wilmington, North Carolina 28403 , or email: