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Environmental Assessment, Change in C-17 Flight Training Operations at Grant County International Airport, Washington by Joint Base Lewis-McChord

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Environmental assessment

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The 62 AW of the U.S. Air Force, under command of Headquarters AMC, proposes to change its C-17 aircraft training operations accomplished by aircrews stationed at JBLM. These and other C-17 aircrews currently conduct low altitudelow airspeed tactical training at the Grant County International Airport Grant County Airport in Moses Lake, Washington. The purpose of the Proposed Action is to enable C-17 crews to accomplish high airspeed tactical training events at the Grant Count Airport at airspeeds greater than 250 knots indicated airspeed KIAS, which is approximately 287 miles per hour. Current restrictions prohibit speeds in excess of 250 knots while below 10,000 ft above mean sea level MSL. The Air Force Flight Standards Agency recently approved a waiver from Federal Aviation Regulation FAR 91.117 to allow AMC owned aircraft flown by AMC pilots to exceed 250 KIAS when flying at an altitude of less than 10,000 ft MSL in visual meteorological conditions VMC on a one day a week basis to conduct tactical training. Because of the C-17s tactical mission, C-17 aircrews from the 62 and 446 AWs at JBLM have a need for a realistic training program to accomplish tactical training maneuvers in conditions that replicate combat conditions to the maximum extent practicable. The proposed high airspeed tactical arrivals would occur with a floor of 1 ,000 ft above ground level AGL. The Proposed Action would occur in the existing maneuver areas surrounding the airport that are currently used for C-17 tactical training. Pursuant to National Environmental Policy Act NEPA guidance, 32 Code of Federal Regulations CFR 989 Air Force Environmental Impact Analysis Process, and other applicable regulations, the Air Force completed an EA of the potential environmental consequences of proposed changes to C-17 flight training operations at the Grant County Airport. The attached EA, which is incorporated herein by reference and supports this Finding of No Significant Impact,

Subject Categories:

  • Military Aircraft Operations
  • Aircraft

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