A new report issued July 29 by the Dominion Pipeline Monitoring Coalition (DPMC) highlights the threat to water resources posed by the construction of the Atlantic Coast Pipeline. Based on aerial photos taken by of ACP construction locations in West Virginia by the Pipeline Air Force, a component of ABRA’s Pipeline Compliance Surveillance Initiative (CSI), the report provides compelling evidence that citizen oversight of pipeline construction is needed to supplement the regulatory oversight provided by the state and federal agencies. The DPMC report observes:
The agencies are too understaffed for effective inspection and enforcement, too willing to waive basic requirements, and too reluctant to inconvenience pipeline developers. And the developers are in too much of a hurry for diligent adherence to their own approved plans.
The CSI photos of ACP construction reveal that installation of runoff and erosion and sediment controls is occurring after rather than before or concurrent with construction-related earth disturbance. Our studies of previous pipeline projects, along with continuing reports of problems with other pipelines under construction in the region, indicate that delayed installation of runoff and erosion and sediment controls is standard industry practice and a major cause of water resource degradation.
Several photographs among the thousands taken by the Pipeline Air Force in recent weeks over West Virginia are included in the report.