Today, Sound Rivers’ three Riverkeepers sent a letter to North Carolina officials requesting the state deny the Water Quality Certification requested by the Atlantic Coast Pipeline.
The proposed Atlantic Coast Pipeline (ACP) is an interstate natural gas transmission pipeline in Virginia and North Carolina. If constructed, the ACP will be owned, constructed and maintained by the Atlantic company, which is a partnership of Dominion Power, Duke Energy, Piedmont Natural Gas and Southern Company Gas. The ACP is currently proposed to cross 343 bodies of water in North Carolina, including the Neuse and Tar Rivers, Swift Creek (an outstanding resource water), Fishing Creek, and Little River, to name a few.The entire project encompasses over 640 miles of natural gas transmission pipeline and associated facilities, including new and modified gas-fired compressor stations from the Marcellus shale region of West Virginia to North Carolina and coastal Virginia.
In today’s letter, the Riverkeepers noted, “North Carolina streams, rivers and wetlands provide vital ecosystem resources, in addition to contributing to the natural beauty of this area. For example, many of the Neuse and Tar River basin streams are inhabited by a diverse array of aquatic wildlife, including a rich variety of mussel species.”
The letter concludes by noting that a pipeline in New York state was denied a similar permit by the state, that just this week was upheld in court. The letter concludes by stating, “North Carolina’s Division of Water Resources has the authority and right to deny the 401 WQC for the Atlantic Coast pipeline due to the fact the applicant has failed to provide sufficient site specific information for the Division to confirm that water quality standards will not be violated. ”