An Open Letter to Governor Jim Justice

Office of the Governor
State Capitol
1900 Kanawha Boulevard, East
Charleston, West Virginia 25305


Honorable Governor Justice,

There are, and have been a number of plans for new electricity transmission lines and natural gas pipelines in West Virginia.  The lines cross our beautiful mountains and damage our environment while exporting West Virginia’s valuable resources: all to provide energy for new jobs in Virginia, North Carolina, Ohio, and beyond.  Dominion Resources, Inc.’s press release announces that “ICF also found that more than 2,200 full-time, permanent jobs could be created in the two states because of the lower energy prices.” [1]

Dominion Resources, Inc. says “Consumers and businesses in Virginia and North Carolina could save an estimated $377 million annually in lower energy costs thanks to the proposed Atlantic Coast Pipeline, according to an analysis by Virginia-based consulting firm ICF International.”[2]  The same pipeline will eventually transmit natural gas to the Cove Point, Maryland liquid natural gas facility for export, and raise natural gas prices for all Americans.

You have a unique opportunity to minimize our environmental damage while creating jobs in West Virginia.  Create two new laws.  The first law being a substantial tax on all energy mined, drilled, or created in West Virginia, taxing both British Thermal Units (BTUs) and kilowatts.  The second law creates an immediate refund of the tax for all energy used in West Virginia.  This will be an incentive to move jobs to West Virginia, the source of energy instead of in other states.  This would encourage the industries that want to use our gas, coal, and oil to locate here; bringing jobs and taxes.  It might also make companies more responsible when they live where the energy is created, mined, or drilled.  Very few people soil their kitchens.

As the transmission projects dwindle in size, or even prove uneconomical and are abandoned you save West Virginians the destruction of our beautiful state.  Imagine… jobs and environment at the same time without hurting the West Virginia energy producing industries.  This is a win – win – win for West Virginia.

I look forward to reading where you introduce and sign this legislation.


Tim McGowan

Davis, WV

[1] Source:

[2] Source: