Mountain Valley Pipeline responds to stop work order

Only work on the MVP project in Virginia is site stabilization

Mountain Valley Pipeline officials are responding after a stop work order was issued over the weekend. 

Officials with the pipeline have released a statement saying they agree that the US Forest Service and the Bureau of Land Management will be able to satisfy the circuit court's requirements. 

They go on to say they are confident the BLM reached the right conclusion during its analysis of alternatives in the Jefferson National Forest.

MVP says it will continue to coordinate with agencies to resolve any issues as they work to have its right-of-way grants reissued. 

This response comes after a series of blows to the progress of construction. 

The Virginia Department of Environmental Quality said on Monday afternoon that they will continue to inspect the project to ensure all erosion and sediment control measures are in place, installed properly and maintained throughout the stop work order. 

“The only work currently under way on the MVP project in Virginia is site stabilization,” said David Paylor, DEQ. “Virginia’s laws give DEQ the authority to ensure the infrastructure is
stabilized – and remains stabilized – for as long as the stop work order is in place.” 

In addition to the Federal Energy Regulator Commission issuing a stop work order over the weekend, a panel of judges also recently took away permits for the pipeline to go through the Jefferson National Forest. 

Here is the full statement from MVP:

"We agree with the FERC that the USFS and BLM will be able to satisfy the Fourth Circuit Court's requirements regarding their respective decisions; and we believe that the two agencies will work quickly to supplement their initial records.

"In addition, we are confident that the BLM has reached the correct conclusion during their initial analysis of alternatives in the JNF and agree that MVP's current route has the least overall impact to the environment. MVP had previously halted operations in the JNF, with exception of work needed to manage any unnecessary environmental erosion and maintain slope stability. We will continue to closely coordinate with all agencies to resolve these challenges as they work to have the right-of-way grants reissued.

"While disappointed with this recent setback, MVP is confident in the BLM's alternatives analysis, as well as with the approvals received by state and federal agencies; and we look forward to continuing the safe construction of this important infrastructure project."

About the Authors:

Samantha Smith joined WSLS 10’s award-winning digital team as a content producer in July 2018.