Not only are several important environmental and safety issues not being unaddressed, but Virginia's reliance on using federal agency approvals for the Atlantic Coast Pipeline is "misplaced," both procedurally and technically.
Those are some of the key conclusions found in the Wintergreen Property Owners Association's (WPOA) June 12th letter to Virginia's Department of Environmental Quality regarding the state agency's oversight of the upcoming ACP construction.
WPOA shared their detailed 45-page filing with DEQ with its membership in an email on June 13th. The association also posted the entire document on their website along with a letter to the property owners from WPOA President John Coy.
"The (WPOA) board has been very consistent in its position regarding the ACP," Coy said in his letter to the resort community's property owners.
"We want to limit as much as possible the inconveniences to the community during the construction process.
"We want to restore the attractiveness of the entrance and exit to our mountain community.
"And, lastly, we want fair compensation for the taking of our property and the damages that need to be addressed due to the location of the pipeline at our doorstep."
Coy reported that WPOA has started the mediation process regarding "cost and damages" and has had two meetings with Dominion, the firm responsible for the ACP project. "If mediation fails to provide a satisfactory outcome for our community,...we will pursue a judgment in court," he said in his letter to the community.
In his 12-page letter accompanying WPOA's June 12th filing with Virginia's DEQ, WPOA's Executive Director, Jay Roberts, said the ACP's construction at Wintergreen should be a "High Consequence Area" and should require a more extensive review that has been offered.
Several pages of Roberts' letter outlined how government regulations on projects such as the ACP say that detailed technical reviews are the responsibility of the state. Protecting the groundwater from the consequences of the horizontal directional drilling on Wintergreen property to put the pipeline under the Blue Ridge Parkway is one of several unaddressed extraordinary concerns.
"With failures mounting on similar projects, DEQ should recognize the need to scrutinize the engineering and construction plans more carefully," Roberts added at the end of his letter.
Roberts' letter to DEQ noted that, "During his campaign for the governorship, Governor Northam committed that there would be a stream-by-stream analysis of the impact of the pipeline."