A project of the magnitude of the Atlantic Coast Pipeline can’t move forward with slapdash permits, recycled from project to project. So SELC was back before the courts today, this time filing legal challenges to newly issued permits from the National Park Service and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. Original authorizations for this project from both agencies were struck down earlier this year.
With no public involvement, the National Park Service quickly reissued a nearly identical permit with no real changes to the project. The current proposal has the pipeline cutting directly under the Blue Ridge Parkway. At the same time, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife reauthorized the pipeline despite new data confirming that critically endangered species will be significantly harmed by the project.
“These agencies again ignored the law in their rush to give the Atlantic Coast Pipeline the approvals it wanted,” said SELC Senior Attorney D.J. Gerken. “These agencies work for the public, not the developers of an unnecessary pipeline even two FERC Commissioners concluded is not in the public interest.”
SELC filed the challenges on behalf of Sierra Club, Defenders of Wildlife, and Virginia Wilderness Committee.