In Richmond, the State Water Control Board is holding the first of what will be four hearings scheduled on two controversial natural gas pipeline projects. Today (12/6) and tomorrow (12/7) they’re considering the Mountain Valley Pipeline. Monday (12/11) and Tuesday (12/12) they’ll look at the Atlantic Coast Pipeline.
The board is considering water quality certifications, but Greg Buppert, an attorney with the Southern Environmental Law Center, says that, among other issues, they won’t be talking about vital erosion and sediment control for either project and the DEQ’s review isn’t finished. “The board doesn’t know what exceptions to the law DEQ will allow for these pipelines,” said Buppert.
The process, Buppert said, shouldn’t be rushed forward. “The State Water Control Board and DEQ should take the necessary time to ensure that water quality is protected. We’ve seen examples, from around the country, of how pipelines harm water quality.”