WV Rivers News: Pipelines, 2 Federal Repeals of Environmental Policy, New WV Rivers T-shirts
WVDEP Approves Mountain Valley Pipeline
Map of the Mountain Valley Pipeline route by The Roanoke Times.
In September the West Virginia Department of Environmental Protection vacated their previously issued 401 Water Quality Certification for the Mountain Valley Pipeline and suspended its stormwater permit. At that time, WVDEP told a federal court it “determined that the information used to issue the Section 401 Certification needs to be further evaluated and possibly enhanced.”
Over the past month and a half we assumed WVDEP was carrying out their further evaluation and enhancements, but on November 1 WVDEP announced their decision to completely waive their authority altogether to issue the 401 Water Quality Certification. A move that essentially gives up jurisdiction to determine whether or not the MVP will meet West Virginia’s water quality standards. Coupled with the 401 waiver was a lifting of the stormwater permit suspension, giving the green light from WVDEP to construct the pipeline.
We’re still collecting information and assessing what this decision means for West Virginia’s water quality. Check out WV Rivers’ blog post Mountain Valley Pipeline Approval: 5 Things You Should Know to learn more and stay tuned, we’ll be sharing more information soon.
Clean Water Rule Repeal and Replace
Thank you to everyone that submitted comments on the Trump administration proposed repeal and replacement of the Clean Water Rule, an important rule that makes sure headwater streams are protected under the Clean Water Act. WV Rivers’ action alert on the proposed repeal generated over 430 comments advocating for a strong and protective Clean Water Rule.
Now, the Trump administration is taking recommendations for the Clean Water Rule’s replacement. You can submit your recommendations through November 28, 2017 at regulations.gov.
Key points to consider in your comments include:
- The health of larger water bodies depends on the health of smaller water bodies;
- The Clean Water Rule is grounded in science and in the widely accepted legal standard for Clean Water Act coverage. Any reassessment of the law’s protections must also be grounded in science; and
- EPA must ensure a public comment process that is at least as rigorous, transparent, and inclusive of all clean water stakeholders as the public process that formed the basis of the 2015 Clean Water Rule.
Charleston is Site of Clean Power Plan Repeal Hearing
Mount Storm Power Plant located in Grant County, West Virginia.
The Clean Water Rule isn’t the only environmental policy under attack by the Trump Administration. The Clean Power Plan, which aims to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from power plants is also targeted for repeal. Charleston, WV has been selected to host the only public hearing in the nation on the proposed repeal. The hearing will be held at the Capitol Complex on November 28-29. If you’d like to make your voice heard, be sure to pre-register by November 16.
Partnerships Protecting Our Water
WV Rivers Hosts Private Lands, Public Waters Event in Shepherdstown
On December 6 at 9:00am, the public is invited to a presentation on a local partnership among conservation groups and water utilities exploring how voluntary land conservation can benefit local waterways and utilities’ source water protection plans. The event is free with a light breakfast available beginning at 8:15; learn more and RSVP.
Baker, WV is Home of New Safe Water Partnership
WV Rivers has partnered with the Cacapon & Lost Rivers Land Trust to bring our Safe Water for WV program to Baker in Hardy County. The community of Baker receives their water from a tributary of the Lost River. The Lost River has pollution prevention goals that are similar to the management strategies in Baker’s public water supplier’s source water protection plan. Safe Water Baker will help build collaborations to address where the Lost River’s pollution prevention goals and the town of Baker’s source water protection plan overlap.
Limited Edition WV Rivers T-shirts
WV Rivers in the News
Waiver aside, WV regulators express confidence in pipeline oversight
WV DEP waives water review authority, paving way for Mountain Valley Pipeline
W.Va. agency waives water quality certification for Mountain Valley Pipeline
Justice urged to give WV DEP resources for complete review of pipelines
Court Allows West Virginia DEP to Start Over on MVP Review
Court ruling highlights unanswered questions on Mountain Valley Pipeline
Groups oppose reduction in Bayer payment for fatal explosion
West Virginians gather to fight Mountain Valley Pipeline