Catch up on updates about the proposed Mountain Valley Pipeline and its Southgate extension with upcoming events, regulatory developments and the latest news that affects the construction of these projects and the communities fighting back against them.
MVP Southgate Lambert Compressor Station
The Lambert Compressor Station, which is proposed to be built outside of Chatham, Virginia, is the sole compressor station for MVP Southgate, a proposed 73-mile extension of the unfinished 303-mile fracked-gas Mountain Valley Pipeline. A public hearing for the compressor station’s air permit was supposed to be held at the summer Air Pollution Control Board meeting on July 7. This meeting was going to be held after Virginia Governor Northam’s emergency COVID orders were lifted at the end of June, which would have prevented any kind of public participation from community members unless they were to drive almost three hours to Richmond on a weekday.
After significant attention and pushback, the public hearing was postponed until the fall Air Pollution Control Board hearing in September. The Virginia Department of Environmental Quality has not indicated whether this hearing will be held in Richmond or whether or not there will be a remote access option for community members and other concerned citizens who spoke at the initial public hearing back in February. Appalachian Voices and our partner groups have sent a letter urging the Virginia Department of Environmental Quality to make the hearing more accessible.
Eminent Domain Suspension
On August 13, the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission suspended the eminent domain privileges for MVP Southgate that would allow them to condemn private property along the route in order to build the pipeline and maintain a right-of-way. This decision was in response to 15 North Carolina state legislators who requested that FERC pause the company’s ability to use eminent domain while the pipeline has several missing permits and ongoing litigation. These legislators include Rep. Ricky Hurtado, whose district encompasses part of Alamance County, the county where MVP Southgate is proposed to end.
Read more at Appalachian Voices Front Porch Blog August 18, 2021
By Ridge Graham and Jessica Sims