Front Porch Blog

With your help, Virginia legislation can protect our water from pipelines

people stand with "no pipelines" signs

Citizens protested the Atlantic Coast Pipeline outside of Dominion Energy’s 2015 shareholder meeting. Photo courtesy of Chesapeake Climate Action Network

We’ve resisted the Mountain Valley and Atlantic Coast pipelines for more than three years.

Our elected officials in Virginia have seen our work, recognized our power, and have developed legislation that could better protect landowners and water resources from interstate fracked-gas pipelines in the future. This is worthy of celebration in and of itself.

But our voices are still needed to ensure the proposed legislation becomes law.

One bill, SB 950, needs our help as soon as possible. This bill, introduced by Sen. Emmett Hanger, who represents communities along the route of the proposed Atlantic Coast Pipeline, would ensure a thorough and transparent clean water certification review process for future proposed interstate fracked-gas pipelines 36 inches in diameter or larger (for reference, the Mountain Valley and Atlantic Coast pipelines are 42-inch pipelines). SB 950 is up for vote in the Senate Finance Committee on Wednesday, February 7 at 9 a.m.

Our decisionmakers should support SB 950 because:

  • Protecting water quality requires complete information: SB 950 would require the state water control board to review all relevant information (like erosion and sediment control plans, karst studies, etc) before they make a decision to issue a permit.
  • States should retain the authority over clean water certification decisions: SB 950 would prohibit the Board from waiving its authority under Clean Water Act § 401.

Please call and/or email the members of the Senate Finance committee TODAY and ask them to support SB950:

Tommy Norment | district03@senate.virginia.gov | 804-698-7503
George Barker | district39@senate.virginia.gov | 804-698-7593
Bill Carrico | district40@senate.virginia.gov | 804-698-7540
Rosalyn Dance | district16@senate.virginia.gov | 804-698-7516
Siobhan Dunnavant | district12@senate.virginia.gov | 804-698-7512
Janet Howell | district32@senate.virginia.gov | 804-698-7532
Ryan McDougle | district04@senate.virginia.gov | 804-698-7504
Stephen Newman | district23@senate.virginia.gov | 804-698-7523
Mark Obenshain | district26@senate.virginia.gov | 804-698-7526
Frank Ruff | district15@senate.virginia.gov | 804-698-7515
Dick Saslaw | district35@senate.virginia.gov | 804-698-7535
Richard Stuart | district28@senate.virginia.gov | 804-698-7528
Jill Vogel | district27@senate.virginia.gov | 804-698-7527
Frank Wagner | district07@senate.virginia.gov | 804-698-7507
Louise Lucas | district18@senate.virginia.gov | (804) 698-7518

To keep an eye on this bill and other important environmental legislation, check out Virginia Conservation Network’s bill-tracker.

About Lara Mack

A native Virginian and lover of mountains, forests, and people, Lara is enthusiastic about all good works to defend the Appalachian mountains and communities. As Appalachian Voices' Virginia Field Organizer, she believes the best kind of political change comes from the bottom up.


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