State Watch

West Virginia approves permit for 300-mile controversial natural gas pipeline

West Virginia on Friday granted a key permit for the construction of a controversial pipeline stretching for more than 300 miles into Virginia.

The state’s Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) granted a water protection permit for the construction of the Mountain Valley Pipeline (MVP), certifying the natural gas pipeline has met state standards for water quality.

The news follows Virginia’s certification of a water quality permit for the project earlier this month, but that move is being challenged at the U.S. 4th Circuit Court.

The project has met stiff resistance in West Virginia from environmental opponents.

Peter Anderson, the Virginia policy director for Appalachian Voices, an organization opposed to the pipeline, said the state has a “wretched environmental record” and that he did not trust the awarded permit met sufficient environmental standards.

“The West Virginia’s DEP has regrettably granted MVP new permission to pollute,” he said in a Thursday statement. “We hope the Biden Administration listens to the thousands of members of the public who oppose this project and finds that more water pollution in service of an unneeded project is not in the public interest.”

The $3 billion to $6.2 billion project comes from multiple companies, including Equitrans Midstream. It’s expected to be built in 2022.

The pipeline could impact up to 20,000 feet of streams and up to 12 acres of wetlands, the West Virginia News reported.

West Virginia’s approval along with Virginia’s paves the way for the Army Corps of Engineers to next issue a stream-crossing permit for the pipeline.

Tags Environmental protection Mountain Valley pipeline permit pipeline Virginia West Virginia

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