Naval Base Coronado, Calif. – The U.S. Department of Navy announces selection of alternative one in the Record of Decision Aug. 21, 2012, for the Silver Strand Training Complex Final Environmental Impact Statement.
The decision meets current and near-term Navy and Department of Defense training, testing and evaluation requirements at the Silver Strand Training Complex, which is the Navy’s West Coast amphibious, special warfare, mine countermeasure and near-shore beach-related training area.
The selected alternative continues existing training activities, increases use and access to the SSTC while allowing use of the latest war-fighting technologies such as amphibious vehicles, mine detection systems, and ship-to-shore transfer systems.
The Silver Strand Complex is an integrated set of training areas on and adjacent to the Silver Strand, the narrow, sandy isthmus that separates San Diego Bay from the Pacific Ocean and lies between the cities of Imperial Beach and Coronado. The Navy has conducted live training there for more than 60 years.
“Training is the cornerstone of readiness for U.S. military forces,” said Commanding Officer of Naval Base Coronado Captain Gary Mayes, U.S. Navy. “The signing of the record of decision allows us to continue using this vital complex to prepare Sailors and Marines to go into harm’s way.”
Mitigation measures will be implemented that are identified in the Final EIS and associated regulatory documents. Implementing the ROD will not result in any significant adverse environmental impacts and will continue and further the Navy’s commitment to environmental stewardship. For example, the Navy will mark and protect western snowy plover nests during training exercises to limit harm to the species.
The Final EIS, released on Jan. 12, 2011, addressed oral and written comments received on the draft EIS that was previously released on Jan. 22, 2010. “Completing the EIS allows the Navy to meet our future training requirements at the SSTC while protecting the area’s sensitive natural resources” said Alex Stone, U.S. Pacific Fleet Environmental Readiness Program Manager.
In compliance with National Environmental Policy Act regulations, the Navy held open house meetings with public hearings regarding the draft EIS on Feb. 23-24, 2010. Public hearings were not required for the final EIS.
The Record of Decision is available at www.silverstrandtrainingcomplexeis.com.