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MVP will not appeal latest setback

Mountain Valley Pipeline Lawsuit
Steve Helber
In this Thursday, May 3, 2018 photo, a section of downed trees sits atop a ridge near homes along the route of the proposed Mountain Valley Pipeline in Lindside, W.Va.

When Virginia’s Air Pollution Control Board rejected plans for a compressor station near Chatham, builders of the Mountain Valley Pipeline were unhappy and took the matter to federal court, but this week MVP decided not to pursue it – withdrawing their appeal. That could spell the end of what’s known as the Southgate extension. Jessica Sims speaks for Appalachian Voices, which opposes the pipeline.

“Southgate runs a little over 70 miles beginning in Pittsylvania County and then it would travel into Rockingham and Alamance Counties in North Carolina,” says Jessica Sims with Appalachian Voices, a group that opposes the pipeline.

MVP also needs permits from the state of North Carolina and from the U.S. Forest Service, and Sims says it can’t build over streams or wetlands.

“Because they are missing those authorizations, the Army Corps has publicly stated they will not move forward with granting, issuing or deciding on the 404 permit, which is the federal component of the Clean Water Act,” Sims explains.

Mountain Valley is now billions of dollars over budget, years behind schedule and has been cited by the state for hundreds on environmental violations on its mainline project. Backers of the pipeline say they are reviewing their options.

Sandy Hausman is Radio IQ's Charlottesville Bureau Chief