|By U.S. Army Environmental Command, Army News
The Department of the Army has completed a final Programmatic
Environmental Assessment (PEA) and draft Finding of No Significant
Impact (FNSI) for Army force structure reductions and realignments that
may occur from Fiscal Years (FY) 2013-2020. The PEA evaluates and
assesses the environmental impacts of potential adjustments to Army
forces at 21 installations.
The Army has completed the analysis to support future anticipated
changes and reductions to its forces that are necessary to reduce
spending while maintaining critical national defense capabilities.
The Army’s proposed action evaluated in the PEA is to reduce the Army’s
active-duty end-strength from 562,000 at the end of FY 2012 to 490,000
by FY 2020.
The PEA analyzes two primary alternatives: Alternative #1: Implement
force reductions by inactivating a minimum of eight Brigade Combat Teams
(BCTs) and realign other combat, combat support, and service support
units between FY 2013 and FY 2020; and Alternative #2: Implement
Alternative 1, inactivate additional BCTs, and reorganize remaining BCTs
by adding an additional combat maneuver battalion and other units. The
PEA also analyzes a No Action alternative, under which the Army would
not reduce the size of the force.
The implementation of Army force realignment will occur over the course
of several years to arrive at an optimally configured force in 2020.
Reductions in Army Soldiers also will be accompanied by some reduction
in civil service employees.
These actions are being undertaken to reshape the Army’s forces to meet
more effectively national security requirements while reducing the
Army’s end-strength. Force realignment and some level of force reduction
will impact most major Army installations. The implementation of this
force rebalancing is necessary to allow the Army to operate in a reduced
budget climate, while ensuring the Army can continue to support the
nation’s critical defense missions.
After 10 years of war, the nation is facing new challenges and
opportunities that call for reshaping defense priorities.
Concurrent with a reduction and realignment of the force, the Army
proposes to reorganize and restructure its forces using lessons learned
over the past 10 years, information about what the future global
security environment will be like, and results of previous BCT studies
to reshape the Army into a force capable of supporting the full spectrum
of military operations.
In the PEA, the Army has evaluated the environmental impacts that may
occur at 21 installations that will likely experience changes in Soldier
populations as part of Army 2020 force structure realignments and force
Force reductions that may occur as part of the proposed action include
the inactivation of Army BCTs and combat support and combat service
support units at Army and joint base stationing locations. The decisions
on how to best implement Army force reductions and force structure
changes from FY 2013-2020 will be made over the course of several years
to arrive at an optimally configured force in 2020.
Alternatives considered in the PEA evaluate the largest growth potential
scenarios at installations that may occur from BCT restructuring, as
well as the greatest force reduction scenarios that could occur as a
result of Army force drawdown. The range of potential installation
reduction and growth (ranging from maximum losses of 8,000 military
personnel to maximum increases of 3,000 at the Army’s largest
installations) was chosen for the environmental analysis to provide
flexibility as future force structure realignment decisions are made.
The PEA is designed to inform decision-makers of potential socioeconomic
and environmental impacts associated with proposed actions as these
stationing decisions are made in the coming years. The specific
locations where changes will occur have not been decided.
Stationing sites that were included in the PEA are those sites that
could experience a change in Soldiers and civilians that exceeds at
total of plus or minus 1,000 military personnel. Sites considered in the
PEA include: Fort Benning, Ga.; Fort Bliss, Texas; Fort Bragg, N.C.;
Fort Campbell, Ky.; Fort Carson, Colo.; Fort Drum, N.Y.; Fort Gordon,
Ga.; Fort Hood, Texas; Fort Irwin, Calif.; Joint Base
Elmendorf-Richardson, Alaska; Joint Base Langley-Eustis, Va.; Joint Base
Lewis-McChord, Wash.; Fort Knox, Ky.; Fort Lee, Va.; Fort Leonard Wood,
Mo.; Fort Polk, La.; Fort Riley, Kan.; Fort Sill, Okla.; Fort Stewart,
Ga.; US Army Garrison Hawaii; and U.S. Army Garrison Fort Wainwright,
Environmental impacts associated with implementation of alternatives
evaluated in the PEA include impacts to air quality, airspace, cultural
and biological resources, noise, soil erosion, wetlands, water
resources, facilities, socioeconomics, energy demand, land use,
hazardous materials and waste, and traffic and transportation. No
significant environmental impacts are anticipated as a result of
implementing either alternative associated with the proposed action,
with the exception of socioeconomic impacts.
Socioeconomic impacts are of particular concern to the Army because they
affect communities around Army installations. Therefore, the PEA has a
comprehensive analysis of the socioeconomic impacts to inform the
decision makers and communities. Impacts could include reduced
employment, income, regional population, and sales and some of these
impacts could be significant.
The completion of an environmental assessment results in one of two
outcomes: either significant environmental impacts are identified and a
Notice of Intent to prepare an Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) is
issued, or, no significant environmental impacts are identified and a
FNSI is signed. Significant socioeconomic impacts alone do not require
preparation of an EIS. The Army study finds that there are no
significant environmental impacts with either alternative evaluated in
the PEA; accordingly a draft FNSI has been prepared. Final decisions as
to which alternative to implement and which installations will see
reductions or unit realignments have not yet been made. Those decisions
will be made based on mission-related criteria and other factors in
light of the information contained in the PEA.
Members of the public can review the PEA and draft FNSI and submit
comments on the draft FNSI until Feb. 19. An electronic version of the
PEA and draft FNSI are available for download at
Submit comments or questions on the PEA to: Public Comments USAEC, Attn:
IMPA-AE (Army 2020 PEA), 2450 Connell Road (Bldg 2264), Fort Sam
Houston, Texas 78234-7664, or e-mail:
For questions or additional information about this PEA, call
210-466-1590 or email