Va governor signs pipeline bill that protects consumers


Cat McCue

This week, Virginia Governor Ralph Northam signed into law HB 167, which protects utility customers from paying for large new gas pipeline costs if the State Corporation Commission (SCC) determines that new pipeline capacity is not necessary for reliability and is not the least-cost way to meet electricity demand. Delegate Lee Ware was the chief patron of the bill, which passed unanimously in both the House of Delegates and the Senate of Virginia.

Statement from Peter Anderson, Virginia Program Manager

“We applaud Governor Northam, Delegate Ware and the rest of the General Assembly for protecting Virginians by ensuring regulators have the right tools to prevent electric monopolies from gouging consumers for unnecessary pipelines.

“We have long held that Virginia families and businesses should not be on the hook for new natural gas projects like the Atlantic Coast Pipeline that are wholly unnecessary to meet electricity needs.

“Given that existing pipelines are sufficient to meet Virginia’s energy needs, and that the Clean Economy Act, awaiting the governor’s signature, requires retirement of all gas-fired power plants in the state, the future of projects like the Atlantic Coast Pipeline is cast into further doubt.”