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How Quiet Should the Grand Canyon Be?


    How quiet should it be in the Grand Canyon? That’s a good question, one that’s been debated time and time again. Should you just hear the wind rushing through the main canyon and its side slots, the Colorado River charging through rapid after rapid, and the screech of a raptor? What about the drone of a flight-seeing plane overhead, or the guttural whine of an outboard engine?
    For the next three months the National Park Service and Federal Aviation Administration want to hear what you think of quiet in the Grand Canyon. The two agencies are collaborating on an Environmental Impact Statement “for actions to substantially restore natural quiet” to the park.
    To facilitate the scoping process, the agencies have scheduled a series of public meetings to learn more about the upcoming EIS. The meetings, all set to run from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m., are scheduled for February 21st at Glendale Community College in Phoenix; February 22nd at the Museum of Northern Arizona in Flagstaff; and February 23rd at the Henderson Convention center in Las Vegas.
    These hearings offer the public opportunities to tell the FAA and the NPS what the upcoming EIS should take into consideration as they work to develop a plan that will “provide for the substantial restoration of the natural quiet” in the Grand Canyon.
    Can't attend one of the meetings? No problem. Send your comments to:

    Docket Management System   
    Doc No. FAA-2005-23402
    U.S.  Department of Transportatation
    Room Plaza 01, 400 Seventh Street, SW
    Washington, D.C., 20590-0001

    The scoping period runs through April 27th. For more information, head over to the FAA's website.

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