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EA-1372: Final Environmental Assessment

Idaho National Engineering and Environmental Laboratory Wildland Fire Management

The Idaho National Engineering and Environmental Laboratory (INEEL) is a U.S. Department of Energy (DOE)-managed reservation occupying about 890 square miles in southeastern Idaho. The INEEL lies within the upper Snake River Plain sagebrush steppe ecosystem. Much of the sagebrush steppe ecosystem throughout the west has been segmented and lost to development and agriculture. The remaining sagebrush steppe ecosystem and the habitat it provides is threatened with irreversible conversion to non-native annual weeds by rangeland management practices in combination with the natural fire process. The sagebrush steppe of the INEEL is now threatened and DOE must evaluate its management role and alternatives available to preserve this important component of the western ecosystem.