Co-Chair Preserve Craig, Inc.
Preserve Craig’s booth launched a new petition drive and an expanded fundraising campaign at the Craig County Fall Festival. Almost 200 stopped by and signed a new petition that will be submitted to the Virginia Department of Environmental Quality. It asks the state of Virginia to do its job and protect our precious waters and streams from the proposed Mountain Valley Pipeline.
The text of the petition is published below and can be signed on-line via our website or at the Emporium on Main Street. Note that the deadline to submit the petition to the DEQ is October 22, so please sign it this week.
In addition, by the end of the day on Saturday Preserve Craig was almost one third of the way to raising $30,000 for legal efforts to assure that the Jefferson National Forest does not change its management plans. $8800 has been donated since the newest fundraising effort began – targeted for appeals and court cases that will enforce our laws and stop the Mountain Valley Pipeline from harming Craig County.
Much of the discussion at the Fair on Saturday centered around news that on Friday night, October 13 the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission issued an approval order certifying the MVP. However, it was conditional on getting all regulatory approvals, including state permits in Virginia and West Virginia and other requirements. Both former chairs of the FERC have raised similar objections and an appeal of this decision is expected.
Petition to the Virginia DEQ and Water Control Board
· Whereas it is now the responsibility of the Commonwealth of Virginia to protect our property rights, Constitutional rights, quality of life and human rights, including our right to clean water,
· We respectfully demand that the Virginia Department of Environmental Quality and the State Water Quality Control Board deny approval of 401 permits and reject the MVP Erosion Control and Sedimentation plans.
· This rejection will support the dissenting opinion of FERC Commissioner LaFleur who soundly rejected certification of the Mountain Valley Pipeline. FERC acted behind closed doors and despite documented unmitigatable damage, illegally approved the Mountain Valley Pipeline (MVP) on Friday, October 13, 2017, over-ruling the former Chair – Commissioner LaFleur’s dissent;
· It is now essential to the well-being and safety of the citizens of Virginia for the State Water Control Board to deny certification under the Clean Water Act. Information necessary to both Clean Water Act 401 certification and Erosion and Sedimentation analysis is woefully incomplete and inadequate, rendering full and adequate public comment impossible; we thus demand that DEQ extend the Public Comment period, inclusive of all matters relevant to the Clean Water Act—that is, water body and wetland crossings, erosion/sedimentation and upland impacts—consistent with federal and state law;
· We further demand that DEQ convene open and accessible public hearings in all counties and municipalities affected by the proposed MVP.
· The Mountain Valley Pipeline will bring irreparable harm to the waters and resources of Virginia that cannot be mitigated. The Virginia DEQ and State Water Control Board are entrusted to protect these resources for the public. We therefore demand that no permits be issued to MVP, and further, that the sedimentation and erosion control plans be rejected.
Special thanks to all the new volunteers and donors!! Please give us a call or email, check out our website. More information on these efforts and what you can do to participate can be found at the Preserve Craig website.