THIS POST WILL BE UPDATED AS NEW EVENTS OCCUR. On July 27, 2018, a federal court ruled in favor of the Sierra Club and other plaintiffs that federal agencies (US Forest Service and Bureau of Land Management) had not properly examined Mountain Valley Pipeline’s proposal before issuing permits for its construction through Jefferson National Forest. The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) then issued a Stop Work order but has since allowed Mountain Valley Pipeline to rewrite the Stop Work order TWICE, and encouraged the company to build over 100 miles of the pipeline as fast as possible.
The court ruling directly affects the crest of Peters Mountain, where MVP proposes to bore under the Appalachian Trail, as well as construction areas where the pipeline route would have a significant impact on the AT off and on for about 100 miles.
This blog aims give a little clarity to a very complicated process by giving the names, dates and basics of the situation as it unfolds. LINKS will take you to the original documents.
HERE IS THE BASIC TIMELINE. IT WILL BE UPDATED AS EVENTS UNFOLD.
July 27, 2018 Federal Court withdraws (vacates) permits for the pipeline in Jefferson National Forest
August 3, 2018 Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) issues a Stop Work order for the entire project
Local observers document ongoing construction during this time; at least one landowner is told by MVP representative that Stop Work order does not apply outside of Jefferson National Forest
August 9, 2018 MVP submits a “Stabilization Plan” that allows 45 to 90 miles of construction during the Stop Work Order
August 10, 2018 FERC approves most of the “Stabilization Plan,” with some decisions “Pending”
August 14, 2018 MVP requests that FERC modify the Stop Work order again so they can continue with construction. They offer their own version of “Stop Work” order, which would allow construction of over 100 miles of pipeline plus compressor stations.
Wednesday, August 15, 2018 Sierra Club and others file emergency legal challenge to FERC action in federal courts.
Thursday, August 16, 2018 FERC again revises the Stop Work to suit the pipeline company and urges work to be done as fast as possible.
Local observers continue to document MVP construction and violations