Mountain Valley Pipeline wants another four years to finish work. Virginians remain split.
As Mountain Valley Pipeline seeks a four-year extension to finish building the long-delayed project, intended to carry natural gas from the Marcellus shale fields into Virginia, Virginians remain as divided as ever on the pipeline’s fate.
Initially expected to be completed by 2018, Mountain Valley has faced staunch opposition from environmental groups and some landowners who object to the company’s crossing of their property.
A string of legal challenges in the Richmond-based U.S. 4th Circuit Court of Appeals has effectively blocked the project from proceeding over the past few years. In repeated rulings, the court has overturned permits issued by federal agencies including the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, the U.S. Forest Service and the Bureau of Land Management.
As delays (and costs) have mounted, the developers have been forced to seek extensions of their certification from the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission. FERC approval is required for pipeline projects to move forward.
Mountain Valley Pipeline’s initial certification expired in October 2020. A two-year extension granted by FERC that year is set to expire in October 2022.
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