MVP Loses Key Federal Permit for River Crossings in WV
Two FERC Commissioners: MVP Not in Public interest
The Mountain Valley Pipeline does not have the proper permits to cross any rivers in the Huntington District of WV, according to a ruling last week by the Federal Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals in Richmond. The Army Corps of Engineers nationwide permit for blanket approval of water crossings cannot be used for MVP’s construction strategy in West Virginia. This ruling is expected to lead to suspension of construction FERC permits as well.
- In addition, the FERC issued a final decision on June 15 that finally allows opponents of MVP to file in Federal Court on the substantive issues to block its licensure. In a 3 to 2 vote, the FERC Commissioners denied all re-hearing requests, thus opening the door to filing lawsuits against the FERC. Normally the Commission votes are unanimous. In scathing criticism of the MVP permit, two of the commissioners, Richard Glick and Cheryl LeFleur, issued dissenting opinions that mirrored many objections that Preserve Craig and the Craig County government have been raising for over three years, specifically:
- The Commission Has Not Demonstrated that the Projects Are Needed
- The Order Does Not Adequately Evaluate the Projects’ Environmental Impact
Cheryl A. LeFleur: “I am dissenting today on the rehearing order for three reasons: (1) I still do not find the MVP project is in the public interest; (2) I am concerned about the majority’s response to stakeholders who have tried to access documents relevant to this proceeding, including precedent agreements; and (3) I disagree with the treatment of climate impacts.”
Richard Glick concludes: “I dissent from the order because it fails to comply with our obligations under section 7 of the Natural Gas Act (NGA) and the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA). Two issues are particularly egregious. First, the Commission concludes that precedent agreements among affiliates of the same corporation are sufficient to demonstrate that the Projects are needed. I disagree. The mere existence of affiliate precedent agreements—which, by their very nature, are not necessarily the product of arms-length negotiations—is insufficient to demonstrate that the Projects are needed. Second, the Commission concludes that it is not obligated to consider the harm caused by the Projects’ contributions to climate change…”
Preserve Craig is working to nullify all permits that MVP obtained from State and Federal Agencies using faulty claims of public benefit. You can help by planning to attend the State Water Control Board (SWCB) meeting on August 21, 2018 in Richmond.
Preserve Craig is a participant in the Mountain Valley Watch (MVW), a collaboration of volunteers, nonprofits, and private interests. MVW is documenting construction activity of the Mountain Valley Pipeline to assure compliance with environmental regulations during construction. Call or text to 833-MVWATCH (833-689-2824) with any info on harm MVP is causing.
The MVW is monitoring the Mountain Valley Pipeline for problems during construction: water source contamination, slope failure, soil erosion into waterbodies, stream channel damage, and damage to adjacent properties. Violations of erosion control regulations observed during construction are being documented and reported to responsible agencies for corrective action.
Help Protect Our Community
We need your donations to protect this special place. Preserve Craig, Inc. is a 501C3 nonprofit volunteer public charity formed in 1991 to protect our natural, historical, and cultural resources. Tax-deductible donations can be made online at www.preservecraig.org or by mail to: Preserve Craig, Inc., PO Box 730, New Castle, VA. 24127. Phone: 540-309-9560. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org