Pipeline regulatory delays undermine confidence in process
A coalition of energy infrastructure workers and businesses says the reassessment of key permits for the Atlantic Coast Pipeline (ACP) threatens jobs and undermines confidence in the regulatory processes.
In a letter to US Virginia Governor Ralph Northam the coalition said that a recent ruling that could allow key permits for the ACP to be reassessed was a threat to thousands of jobs, would harm the economy and undermine the regulatory process.
Federal permits were issued for the ACP after more than three years of planning a safe and environmentally responsible route.
During this process, more than 9656 km of potential routs were considered – and more than 300 route adjustments were made to avoid wetlands, wildlife habitats, drinking water sources and sensitive geologic features – before a 967 km route was selected.
The ruling by the Virginia State Water Control Board opens the door to reassessment of construction permits already issued by the US Army Corps of Engineers.
“This damages Virginia’s reputation as a business-friendly state and undermines confidence in the regulatory process,” Associated General Contractors of Virginia CEO Gordon Dixon said.
“Businesses and workers who build and provide equipment, materials, supplies, and services to infrastructure projects are in jeopardy after more than three years of rigorous safety planning and regulatory oversight.”
Energy Equipment and Infrastructure Alliance President Toby Mack said the he urged Governor Northam to encourage state regulators to reaffirm previously issued permits so that construction could continue as planned.
“If this opposition rearguard action were to stand, permits for any Virginia construction project involving water crossings, including roads, bridges, electric transmission lines or virtually any form of infrastructure can now be called into question,” Mr Mack said.
For more information visit the Energy Builders website.
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