US Forest Serv OKs Atlantic Coast Pipe Crossing Appalachian Trail

Last Thursday was the last day for people, agencies, nutjobs, supporters–for anyone–to file an official comment with the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) on the agency’s draft environmental impact statement for the Atlantic Coast Pipeline project. Dominion has proposed building the $5 billion Atlantic Coast Pipeline (ACP) project from West Virginia through Virginia and into North Carolina. One of the problems they’ve had is resistance from U.S. government agencies, including the U.S. Forest Service. In January 2016, the USFS told Dominion it was a no-go for running the pipeline through tiny pieces of either the Monongahela or George Washington national forests in West Virginia and Virginia (see US Forest Service Blocks Atlantic Coast Pipeline in National Forests). So we found it interesting that USFS, in filing a comment last Tuesday about the project, endorsed Atlantic Coast’s plan to drill underneath the famed Appalachian National Scenic Trail and the Blue Ridge Parkway. The pipeline will drill horizontally underneath both. While it’s good news that the USFS is not blocking the pipeline, the lifers still dug in at the EPA continue to pressure FERC to not release the final EIS, to do “further analysis”–which is code for delay the project until they can figure out a way to kill it. Here’s the good news from the USFS…

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