WV Rivers News: MVP Permit Invalidated, WV Water Protections, Good News for Public Lands

WV Water Quality Protections Under Review

The public comment period on WVDEP’s proposed revisions to West Virginia’s water quality standards wrapped-up last month. Nearly 600 of you submitted comments through WV Rivers’ alert, thank you!

As part of the public comment process, WVDEP responded to the comments and released their final rule. WVDEP’s final water quality standards will go before the 2019 Legislature for approval. This isn’t over — we still need your help!

The biggest change WVDEP made to the final rule involved how limits are calculated on 60 pollutants harmful to human health. The calculation relies on an average fish consumption rate, and WVDEP chose to decrease that rate by more than half. This change increased the amounts of toxins allowed in our waters as compared to the originally proposed rule.

WVDEP also chose not to adopt all of EPA’s recommended standards, leaving gaps in protections from 38 chemicals known to be harmful to human health.

We’re carefully analyzing WVDEP’s final rule and will keep you updated. Stay tuned!

Mountain Valley Pipeline Permit Invalidated

Did you hear the news? The 4th Circuit Court of Appeals recently invalidatedfederal approvals for the Mountain Valley Pipeline to cross the Jefferson National Forest and the Appalachian Trail. As a result, the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) issued a Stop Work Order for the pipeline.

This means that the MVP no longer has the permits needed to cross federal lands. The Mountain Valley Pipeline must stop work and stabilize the right of way and work areas until their issues are resolved with federal agencies. While we can’t predict what will happen next, we’ll keep you updated as new developments emerge. In the meantime, check out our pipeline webpage for recent news.

WV Senators Champion Public Lands

It’s working– your letters, postcards, and calls supporting public lands are making a big impact on West Virginia’s Senators Capito and Manchin! Late last week, Senator Capito and Senator Manchin showed great leadership and dedication to public lands by sending a joint letter to Senate leadership supporting the Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF), a vital source of funding for conservation and recreational access. Learn more here.

The Land and Water Conservation Fund is set to expire on September 30 unless Congress renews it. That’s why the bipartisan support and leadership from West Virginia’s Senators is so important.

Help ensure future support for public lands and reinforce the importance of LWCF by sending Senators Capito and Manchin a thank you note.

Get Your Copy of Headwaters

Check out that cover shot! The summer edition of WV Rivers newsletter, Headwaters, is available for download.

This issue is all about you! It tells the stories of folks from across West Virginia who are stepping up and speaking out for our rivers and streams. From volunteer water quality monitors to public lands activists, we’re profiling the many voices of West Virginia Rivers Coalition. Download your copy of Headwaters here.

Get to Know your Rivers – Upcoming Events

August 25: Riverfest in Buckhannon. Make plans to join WV Rivers at the second annual Riverfest in Buckhannon! The day kicks-off with a group float on the Buckhannon River, learn more here. Then head over to the Riverwalk for live music, speakers, and a water dance and ceremony, learn more here.

September 8: Freshwater Folk Festival

September 15: Greenbrier River Celebration

September 13-16: Gauley Fest

October 23: Watershed Celebration Day

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