Atlantic Coast Pipeline's future headed to the U.S. Supreme Court; SELC says it's costly, no
The Southern Environmental Law Center is headed to the U.S. Supreme Court to defend a victory it won recently against an important permit for the proposed Atlantic Coast Pipeline, which, if approved, would run through Virginia.
Last Friday, the nation’s highest court agreed to hear the appeal, requested by the pipeline developer and the federal government, of a ruling in a case the center won, challenging a U.S. Forest Service permit that would have allowed the pipeline to cross two national forests and the Appalachian Trail in Virginia.
In the earlier case, among other points decided in the center's favor, the Fourth Circuit Court said that the forest service did not have the legal authority to permit the pipeline to cross the Appalachian Trail, even on federal land. This is the specific issue on appeal to the Supreme Court.
The 600-mile Atlantic Coast Pipeline, proposed to run from West Virginia across Virginia and on to North Carolina, is damaging, risky, costly and unnecessary, said Sarah Francisco.
"This Supreme Court case is about one permit, while six other permits for this controversial pipeline remain tossed out by the courts or on hold, and construction has been halted since December," said Sarah Francisco, director of the center's office in Charlottesville. "SELC is fully prepared to defend the Fourth Circuit’s decision before the high court, expecting arguments early next year and a decision in summer.
The 600-mile Atlantic Coast Pipeline, proposed to run from West Virginia across Virginia and on to North Carolina, is damaging, risky, costly and unnecessary, said Francisco.
"Though we are up against giant energy companies trying to force this project forward, and agencies reluctant to properly scrutinize it, we will continue making our case, as we work with the many partners and communities seeking to stop the Atlantic Coast Pipeline," she said.