Category Archives: Notice of Violation

DEQ Gives Notice to MVP on Violations


On July 10, 2018, both the Roanoke Times and WSLS10 reported that the Virginia Department of Environmental Quality has given EQT Corp. in Pittsburgh, builder of the Mountain Valley Pipeline, a nine-page notice of environmental violations punishable by fines and repair mandates. The notice says MVP failed to install and maintain erosion-control devices has fouled 8,800 feet of streams in six locations.

Read the full Notice of Violation.

According to the Roanoke Times, “The Virginia notice is not a finding of guilt or liability but a set of allegations over which the company and regulators are to negotiate and reach agreement. In Virginia, fines for environmental violations of the type alleged can reach $32,000 per day. ‘We are holding MVP accountable and we expect full resolution of the issues,’ DEQ spokeswoman Ann Regn said Tuesday. …. The unexpectedly large rainfall won’t qualify as an excuse for not keeping sediment under control, said Regn, who added that the company is responsible for cleanup.”

The company has 10 days to respond – BUT they are allowed to keep working during the 10 days.

POSTPONED – Augusta County Alliance Asks for Meeting Attendees on July 10, 2018


UPDATE:  According to the July 6, 2018, Staunton News Leader, the July 10 hearing was postponed by the Board of Zoning Appeals to meet requirements as described in the Code of Virginia for the appropriate advertisement of such hearings. A new hearing date will be set.

The Augusta County Alliance is calling for the community’s help to keep Dominion honest as it continues pushing ahead on its plans for this destructive, unsafe, and unnecessary pipeline project. They need your attendance at the Staunton Board of Zoning Appeals meeting, Tuesday, July 10, 2018, 2 p.m. in the Staunton City Council Chambers (116 W Beverley St., Staunton, VA, 24401).

Apparently Dominion has been storing heavy construction equipment, buses, and supplies for pipeline construction on a lot owned by Staunton Tractor off Richmond Avenue. The city of Staunton informed Staunton Tractor that creating a “contractor’s equipment storage area” is not a permitted use at that site. In a notice of violation sent to Staunton Tractor, the city’s Planning & Zoning Division noted: “As we understand it, this equipment is not part of your inventory for sale and is not present for repair work to be done on it. This part of the property is being used essentially as a contractors’ establishment, serving as an operation staging site for a contractor.”

Staunton Tractor has appealed the notice of violation, asserting that the land is grandfathered in for storage of equipment and that the equipment is being stored there so that it can be repaired and maintained.

The matter will be heard by the Staunton Board of Zoning Appeals on Tuesday, July 10 at 2 p.m. in the Staunton City Council Chambers. This is a public hearing and your comments are important! Remind Staunton Tractor and Dominion that rules are there for a reason and everyone has to play by the same rule book.

Come out and voice your opinion!

For further information, email info@augustacountyalliance.org.

CSI Seeks FERC Investigation of Potential ACP Violations

Apparent equipment staging area and new or reconstructed road and bridges observed during Pipeline Air Force surveillance flights. (3/11/18)

On March 14, 2018, we reported on the first incident report from the Compliance Surveillance Initiative (CSI), apparent unauthorized access road and staging area construction in the MP158 area, the Augusta County Horizontal Direction Drilling area. A request was filed March 22 on behalf of Allegheny-Blue Ridge Alliance (ABRA) with the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) to investigate potential violations by Atlantic Coast Pipeline (ACP) of the Commission’s Certificate and Virginia’s water quality certification. Aerial photographs taken earlier in March by ABRA’s CSI showed what appears to be substantial construction work in an area of Augusta County, near the site from which ACP proposes to bore through the Blue Ridge Mountains. The photographs show new and improved roads, new bridges, and what appear to be equipment parking and staging areas.

The observed activities do not appear to have been authorized under any of the limited Notices to Proceed FERC has issued, which allow tree cutting by non-mechanized means. The request explains that these actions will impact water quality in a number of ways and that, since the State of Virginia has not approved erosion and sediment control and stormwater plans and its water quality certification is not effective, possible land disturbance, changes to stormwater flows, and other effects must not be allowed. The submittal to FERC also notes that ACP’s weekly status reports have not provided notice of any of these activities and that environmental compliance reports indicate these sites have not been inspected.

The submitters also asked that the Commission report on its investigative proceedings and findings to ABRA, the CSI, and the public and that it not invoke regulatory provisions to keep this information from citizens.

VADEQ Issues “Notice of Violation” Against ACP

DEQ Takes Enforcement Action Against Atlantic Coast Pipeline, LLC

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE, March 9, 2018

Contact: Ann Regn, (804) 698-4442, ann.regn@deq.virginia.gov

RICHMOND, VA. – The Virginia Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) issued a Notice of Violation (NOV) to Atlantic Coast Pipeline, LLC (ACP) on March 16, 2018, for failing to maintain adequate limits of disturbance during tree felling operations in violation of Virginia’s State Water Control Law. These limits forbid work within buffer zones to protect stream and wetland crossings during pipeline development, and are instrumental to the protection of Virginia’s environment and natural resources.

The NOV identifies violations on 15 separate sites resulting in an estimated 0.84 acres in impact to wetlands and streams.

“DEQ is watching pipeline activities closely and expects full compliance with all conditions,” said David K. Paylor, Director. “We will not hesitate to initiate enforcement actions like this to make sure the project complies with good environmental standards.”

The NOV requires ACP representatives to contact DEQ within 10 days to discuss how to remedy the situation and explain how they will prevent future violations.

While limited tree felling is allowed, the activity cannot impact riparian areas. Furthermore, land disturbance cannot begin until all of the erosion and sediment and stormwater control plans required for all sections of the project are approved by DEQ. “The agency’s review of the project has been the most thorough in the history of the Commonwealth, and the enforcement will be as rigorous,” said Director Paylor.

The issuance of an NOV is the first step in triggering enforcement action by DEQ. Enforcement actions are frequently resolved with payment of a civil charge and required action to correct the violation. A copy of the NOV can be obtained on DEQ’s webpage http://www.deq.virginia.gov/Portals/0/DEQ/Enforcement/NaturalGasPipelines/ACPLLCFinalNOV03162018.pdf

The 600-mile underground Atlantic Coast Pipeline originates in West Virginia and travels through Virginia and North Carolina. The pipeline is being developed jointly by Dominion Energy, Duke Energy, Piedmont Natural Gas and Southern Company Gas. Though the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission has independent authority over many of the procedures related to federal pipeline development, DEQ is able to exercise enforcement authority over many aspects of the project.
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Early press coverage of the Notice of Violation in the Roanoke Star and The Recorder.