Coalition Sues the Agency
Charlottesville, VA— The Southern Environmental Law Center and Appalachian Mountain Advocates filed a challenge in federal court on behalf of 11 conservation groups challenging the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission’s decision to permit the Atlantic Coast Pipeline.
“FERC demonstrated in its split decision to approve the pipeline that there is lingering doubt about the need for this destructive project in our region,” said Southern Environmental Law Center Senior Attorney Greg Buppert. “This agency must change its ineffective review process and protect citizens from expensive and risky pipelines we don’t need.”
FERC’s decision to give the pipeline the go ahead was accompanied by a strong dissent from commissioner Cheryl LaFleur who critiqued her own agency for failing to look behind agreements put forth by utilities meant to skew demand needs and justify unneeded projects.
The $5.5 billion Atlantic Coast Pipeline owned by Dominion Energy and Duke Energy, would cross 600 miles from West Virginia through Virginia and North Carolina and cut through mountain ridge tops, down steep unstable mountainsides, and through sensitive rivers and streams. Testimony before the Virginia State Corporation Commission revealed that about $2 billion in costs associated with the pipeline would be passed on to Dominion utility customers.
The Southern Environmental Law Center and Appalachian Mountain Advocates filed the lawsuit in the 4th Circuit Court on behalf of Appalachian Voices, Chesapeake Climate Action Network, Cowpasture River Preservation Association, Friends of Buckingham, Highlanders for Responsible Development, Shenandoah Valley Battlefields Foundation, Shenandoah Valley Network, the Sierra Club, Virginia Wilderness Committee, Wild Virginia, and Winyah Rivers Foundation.
To learn more about this destructive pipeline and the people in its path, go to inthepath.org.
The Southern Environmental Law Center is celebrating its 30th anniversary this year. With nine offices across the region (Charlottesville, VA; Chapel Hill, NC; Atlanta, GA; Charleston, SC; Washington, DC; Birmingham, AL; Nashville, TN; Asheville, NC; and Richmond, VA), SELC is widely recognized as the Southeast’s foremost environmental organization and regional leader. SELC works on a full range of environmental issues to protect the South’s natural resources and the health and well-being of all the people in our region. www.SouthernEnvironment.org
About Appalachian Mountain Advocates:
Appalachian Mountain Advocates (Appalmad) is a non-profit law and policy center dedicated to fighting for clean water and a clean energy future. Appalmad has a long history of winning precedent-setting court cases. The organization represents scores of landowners and grassroots organizations challenging four unnecessary interstate pipelines in Virginia, West Virginia, and Pennsylvania. Appalmad has worked for more than 15 years to ensure the fossil fuel industry cannot continue to dump its costs of doing business onto the public. For more information, visit www.appalmad.org.