An appeal by Atlantic Coast Pipeline, LLC (ACP, LLC) for a rehearing of the December 13. 2018 decision of the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals to vacate the U.S. Forest Service permit for the Atlantic Coast Pipeline (ACP) was rejected on February 25. The ACP, LLC’s January 28 petition, which was supported by a February 11 filing from the Forest Service, sought an en banc hearing, that is a heaing before all 15 sitting judges on the Fourth Circuit. The Fourth Circuit rarely grants such requests, on average only 0.3% of the cases in which such a request is made.
Dominion Energy, the largest owner of the ACP project, issued a statement the following day that it expects to appeal the decision to the Supreme Court of the United States in the next 90 days. During the most recently completed term of the Supreme Court (October 2, 2017 to September 30, 2018), 6,315 cases were filed with the Court for consideration. Only 69 were accepted for consideration.
Dominion has also indicated it will continue to seek an override of the Fourth Circuit decision through action by Congress. Its efforts to date have not been successful. However, ABRA urged in a special February 11 Action Alert that those concerned about Dominion’s attempts should write their Representative in the U.S. Congress. Those who have not yet communicated with their U.S. House of Representative member are urged to do so. The Action Alert is available here. For assistance with talking points in your communication, click here.