In an act wich will help to spread the negative effects of fracking far and wide into this state from neighboring operations in West Virginia and Pennsylvania, Dominon Power is seeking to build a 42-inch pipeline through some of the most beautiful parts of the state, and the Commonwealth will be using eminent domain to confiscate the private property in the way. The full story, which appeared in the Richmond Times Dispatch, is here

"The Atlantic Coast Pipeline is one of three 42-inch pipelines proposed through western Virginia from the Marcellus shale fields in West Virginia, Ohio and Pennsylvania that are fueling a surge in domestic energy production through horizontal drilling and fracturing techniques known as “fracking.”

Environmentalists cheered the decision by the U.S. Forest Service in November to prohibit fracking in the George Washington National Forest except on existing gas leases and private mineral rights that total 177,000 acres of the 1.1 million acres of sensitive forest lands in the Allegheny Mountains.

But they are horrified by the prospect of multiple 42-inch pipelines crossing some of the steepest and most sensitive terrain in Virginia.

The Atlantic Coast Pipeline alone would cut through about 30 miles in two national forests; traverse more than 20 high mountain ridges in the Allegheny and Blue Ridge ranges; cross sensitive trout streams, wetlands and animal habitat; and pass through the complex karst geological formations that store water for wells and springs in the farm-rich Shenandoah Valley.

“We are very worried about our water supply, both the quality and the quantity,” said Tracy C. Pyles Jr., a member of the Augusta Board of Supervisors and the county service authority, which operates 12 well-fed water systems across the nearly 1,000-square-mile county.

Water is a crucial issue for Staunton as well as surrounding Augusta, which contains the headwaters for tributaries of the James, Shenandoah and Potomac rivers.

“We’re the only county in the state where no water flows in — it all flows out,” said Nancy Taylor Sorrells, a former member of the Board of Supervisors who is co-chairman of the Augusta County Alliance and a member of the service authority board."

one of the most daming lines:

"Opponents argue that Dominion should route more of the pipeline along existing utility and road rights of way, which currently account for only 4 percent of the 300-foot-wide study corridor on the 554-mile route."

It does make you wonder what the hell advantage there is to having Terry McAuliffe in the governor's office if he is going to support this kind of project.


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