A public hearing before the Virginia State Air Pollution Control Board on the proposed air permit for the Atlantic Coast Pipeline compressor station in Buckingham County, VA (the only such facility planned in Virginia for the project) will be held next Tuesday, September 11, beginning at 5 pm at the Buckingham County Middle School, 1184 High School Road, Buckingham, VA. For hearing details click here.
The hearing will cap a 30-day comment period that the Virginia Department of Environmental Quality announced in early August. Several requests have been made for the commit period to be extended, including a September 5 letter from the Southern Environmental Law Center that stated:
Virginia law provides that minor NSR permit applications are subject to a public comment period of at least 30 days. Va. Code § 5-80-1170. In light of the technical complexity and importance to the affected community of the proposed Buckingham compressor station, DEQ should exercise its statutory discretion to afford the public additional time to comment. We therefore ask that the comment deadline and public hearing be extended to Monday, October 8, 2018.
. . . the members of the public who stand to lose the most if the permit is insufficient to protect air quality are members of an economically disadvantaged minority community. The Virginia Energy Plan lists as one of the objectives of the Commonwealth’s Energy Policy to “develop energy resources and facilities in a manner that does not impose a disproportionate adverse impact on economically disadvantaged or minority communities.” Va. Code § 67-101(12). A step in the right direction in fulfilling that directive is to ensure the public has ample time to consider a permit that may very well impose just such a disproportionate impact on the Union Hill community.