RECENTLY the federal government issued a decision to push ahead a dangerous project that would directly harm my city’s water supply.

As the mayor of the city of Staunton, the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission’s split-decision approval of the Atlantic Coast Pipeline compels me to address Staunton’s deep concerns and strong opposition to the pipeline.

On Oct. 23, 2014, the Staunton City Council passed a resolution opposing the Atlantic Coast Pipeline. Our opposition has only strengthened since that time.

 The ACP, proposed to cut through 57 miles of Augusta County, will provide no economic benefit to our region but will, instead, harm our tourism and farming. The use of eminent domain that will not benefit the public good in our region is abhorrent, and its use by a for-profit company flies in the face of good governance.

Worse still, the very residents being harmed—who oppose the ACP—will have to pay for it as Dominion passes on the cost of building this destructive pipeline to the tune of more than $2 billion.

Most alarming, however, is that this project jeopardizes our water supply. Both the quantity and the quality of our drinking water are at serious risk.

The huge gas pipeline would cut through the Gardner Spring recharge area—the conduit of underground caves and cracks where our water originates. This spring, owned by the city and located near the proposed pipeline route in Augusta County, supplies more than 50 percent of Staunton’s water and sends water to many county customers as well.

That recharge area is vital because the majority of the water that feeds Gardner Spring comes from an extensive underground aquifer system of channels through the rock that may extend as many as five or more miles from the spring itself.

Read More: – Mayor Carolyn Dull – 11.08.2017

Posted by: Nelson Bailey

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