Extension of Time for Mountain Valley Pipeline Approved

The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) has granted an extension of time for the completion of the Mountain Valley Pipeline to October 13, 2026.  The authorization to build the pipeline had been scheduled to expire in October, 2022.

            As reported in the August, 2022, issue of The Highlands Voice, several groups, including the West Virginia Highlands Conservancy, had objected to the extension.  They said that conditions had changed since approval was granted, making an extension inappropriate, especially without considering new information.

            FERC concluded that the environmental impact of the pipeline had not substantially changed.  It also concluded that some of the objections the groups made had been considered the last time the pipeline asked for an extension and, as a result, it could not consider them now.

            There has been much talk of late of the side agreement between Senator Manchin and Senate leadership that would fast track the Mountain Valley Pipeline.  FERC’s decision on the extension has no direct connection to that.  Right now the agreement is only an understanding on future legislation, not a present law.  Perhaps fast tracking of infrastructure projects is the air in Washington now, pointing to an indirect connection.