At its December 13 meeting, the Virginia State Water Control Board voted 4-3 to initiate the formal hearing process to consider revoking the 401 Certification of the Mountain Valley Pipeline (MVP). The motion was made by new Board member James Lofton in response to extensive public comment regarding the ongoing damage being done by the Mountain Valley Pipeline’s construction through Southwest Virginia. Other Board members voting in favor of Lofton’s motion were new member Paula Jasinski, Nissa Dean and Robert Wayland. During discussion, Board member Tim Hayes acknowledged concerns about the issues, but did not vote in favor of initiating the formal hearing process.
Roberta Bondurant, Co-Chair of the POWHR Coalition that has led the fight against the MVP, said:
“We are encouraged that the Board is taking the necessary steps to stop the destruction we’ve experienced in our region resulting from this project. The construction imposed on landowners and communities since the federal court granted early entry has been nothing short of devastating, and the Board is finally acting on the evidence we’ve shown them.
“The newest members of the Board were engaged with the public right out of the gate, and we applaud the Board for their persistent inquiry and for supporting the safety and welfare of the public. This decision is a leap in the direction of better protecting the water resources so vital to Southwest Virginia and the Commonwealth.”