Risky and Unnecessary Natural Gas Pipelines Threaten Our Region

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Rivers, streams and forests of the central Appalachian Mountains are in the crosshairs of proposed interstate gas pipeline projects. One of these projects, the Atlantic Coast Pipeline, would cut through one of the most intact conservation landscapes in the Southeast in West Virginia, Virginia and North Carolina, including sections of the George Washington, and Monongahela national forests, to move natural gas from the well-fields to Mid-Atlantic and Southeast customers.

Dominion Energy, Duke Energy and their partners are rushing forward with the Atlantic Coast Pipeline even though it lacks strong market support. This unnecessary pipeline will not only harm the mountains, forests and waterways in it’s path – it will also disrupt the lives of the people living and working along its 600 mile long route and lock a new generation into decades more of fossil fuel consumption.

SELC is advocating for a thorough and transparent assessment of need for the Atlantic Coast Pipeline by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission. In the three years since this project was proposed its justification has continued to erode. New analysis shows that demand for gas-fired electricity generation is not growing in our region. But utilities in the region continue to inflate the need for electricity.

Question of Demand

There is notable difference between Dominion’s inflated demand projection and that of the region’s grid operator, PJM Interconnection. By 2027, that difference equals almost 2 gas-fired power plants.

SELC is a founding member of the Allegheny-Blue Ridge Alliance, a coalition of 43 organizations from across Virginia and West Virginia with grave concerns about the proposed route of the Atlantic Coast Pipeline. SELC has partnered with citizens who are acutely concerned about the risks to their agricultural and rural communities, including damage to scenic landscapes and the risk of pollution.