Category Archives: Take Action

Deadline for Comments on FERC Process: July 25


Last week we posted an article about commenting to FERC on revising its policies on review and authorization of natural gas pipeline proposals, policies which have not been revised since 1989!  FERC is “seeking information and stakeholder perspectives to help the Commission explore whether, and if so, how, to revise existing policies regarding its review and authorization of interstate natural gas transportation facilities under section 7 of the Natural Gas Act.”

The deadline for comments is July 25, 2018.

In our post last week we provided instructions for commenting. After several people had problems with both searching for previous comments or making their own comments on the FERC Web page, a call by Friends of Nelson to FERC resulted in revised instructions:

  • To search for comments, enter only the docket number (PL18-1), and do NOT include the sub-docket number; the system does not recognize sub-dockets numbers for anything but projects.
  • One cannot submit comments for this using e-comments – you must use e-filing. Apparently the simpler-to-use e-comments will only accept comments on projects, not on policy review.

The person to whom we talked at FERC kept saying, “Yes, we know there are all kinds of problems with the system, and yes, we know it is down a lot – they really need something better because it can’t handle the volume.” Seems like that is worthy of comment in and of itself!

With this new information, we urge everyone to comment to FERC on their permitting process.

You can also send comments and letters by U.S. mail, addressed to:

Kimberly D. Bose, Secretary
Federal Energy Regulatory Commission
888 First Street NE, Room 1A
Washington, DC 20426

West Virginia Public Broadcasting has published an interesting article, How Would You Improve the Natural Gas Pipeline Process?  It discusses comments made by many people, and includes links to their comments.

Take a Day Hike or Camp Overnight in a Bath County Old Growth Forest


The biggest regional land-clearing project since the federal highway program of the 1960s is now underway in Virginia. In order to build the Atlantic Coast and Mountain Valley pipelines, Dominion Energy and EQT are targeting vulnerable communities, destroying precious ecosystems, and threatening the livelihoods of Virginians far and wide.

Enough is enough! Visit Bath County this summer for a continuous peaceful and family-friendly encampment on the property of Bill and Lynn Limpert. The Atlantic Coast Pipeline is slated to go right through their property, destroying hundreds of its jaw-dropping old growth trees, and decapitating an entire ridgeline known locally as “Miracle Ridge.” To participate, sign up here. For more information, check out a recent article in the Richmond Times-Dispatch

Circle of Protection, July 22, 2018


Join the Sunday afternoon July 22, 2018, Circle of Protection, an interfaith prayer vigil, co-produced by Friends of Buckingham County, Virginia and Water is Life. Protect It, to protect Buckingham County (and all of us!) from the proposed Atlantic Coast Pipeline and the proposed Union Hill ACP Compressor Station.

Featuring music by Emily Robey Morrison and the Yes Brothers, opening prayers by Reverends Ray McKenzie and Virginia Agee and by Interfaith leader, Kira Young, story by Caroline Bray of Virginia Student Environmental Coalition and more, lifting up for protection for the Union Hill community and Buckingham County against the very real threats of the proposed Atlantic Coast Pipeline and the proposed Union Hill compressor station. Join in to lift our spirits, inform our minds, and choose our right actions. With potluck and guest speaker to follow. 1-3 pm.

The vigils are open air on the grounds of Union Hill Baptist Church, 1496 Union Hill Road (State Route 663), Buckingham, VA 23921.  Indoor pot luck and speaker following in the church basement. The Circle of Protection is a collaboration of Friends of Buckingham, Union Hill/Grove Baptist Church, Yogaville, VSEC and Water is life. Protect it.

See Circle of Protection for more directions and more details. (You are advised to print out directions for the event before setting forth as reception can be vague to nonexistent in certain parts of the county.)

Deadline for Comments on FERC Process: July 25


The deadline for commenting to FERC on revising its policies on review and authorization of natural gas pipeline proposals is July 25, 2018. FERC’s policies have not been revised since 1989!

FERC’s news release of April 19, 2018: Commission Initiates Notice of Inquiry into Pipeline Certificate Policy Statement

The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) today launched an inquiry seeking information and stakeholder perspectives to help the Commission explore whether, and if so, how, to revise existing policies regarding its review and authorization of interstate natural gas transportation facilities under section 7 of the Natural Gas Act.

FERC issued a Notice of Inquiry (NOI) to examine its policies in light of changes in the natural gas industry and increased stakeholder interest in how it reviews natural gas pipeline proposals since the Commission adopted its current Policy Statement on pipeline certification. The Commission issued its current Policy Statement, “Certification of New Interstate Natural Gas Pipeline Facilities – Statement of Policy” (Docket No. PL99-3-000), in September 1999.

Today’s NOI poses a range of questions that reflect concerns raised in numerous public comments, court proceedings and other forums. Through the NOI, FERC is seeking input on potential changes to both the existing Policy Statement and the structure and scope of the Commission’s environmental analysis of proposed natural gas projects.

The Commission also is seeking feedback on the transparency, timing, and predictability of its certification process. FERC is encouraging commenters to specifically identify any perceived issues with the current analytical and procedural approaches, and to provide detailed recommendations to address these issues.

A number of recent news stories have addresses FERC’s refusal to address broader impacts of pipelines on climate change and greenhouse gases, e.g. LaFleur defies FERC majority, will consider broad climate impacts of pipelines, and Federal appeals court dismisses pipeline case that charged FERC with bias.

Be sure to use docket number PL18-1-000 when submitting your comment to FERC, whether you submit electronically or by U.S. mail.

You may  submit a comment to FERC electronically (https://ferconline.ferc.gov/QuickComment.aspx).  

Directions to submit an e comment:

Go to https://ferconline.ferc.gov/QuickComment.aspx and fill in your information.  They will send you an email immediately. You will need to click on the link they provide in the email. It will take you to the FERC comment page. You will need to enter the docket number – PL18-1-000. After you have entered it, it should show up in a box, and you will need to click on the blue ‘+’ next to it. Then you copy and paste your comment into the provided box or write in your comment and submit.

You can also send comments and letters by U.S. mail, addressed to:

Kimberly D. Bose, Secretary
Federal Energy Regulatory Commission
888 First Street NE, Room 1A
Washington, DC 20426

To read other submissions to FERC:  You can search the FERC database of comments submitted on the ACP using either their General Search page or their Advanced Search page.  In both cases, be sure to include the docket number (PL18-1-000).  Note:  You should be aware that the search page and its functions on FERC’s Web site are temperamental and often non-functional – that in itself is something worthy of comments to FERC!

Actions for the Week Ahead

Water Is Life. Protect It. calls everyone to take action in the coming week:

1. GET UP! GO OUT THERE!  If I told you someone was coming into your yard to poison your well, you would get up and go out there right?  Get up! Go out there! Some of many good places to show up this week:

  • Saturday: “Die-In” for Virginia’s Air and Water with Red Terry.  Saturday, 2-3 pm with assembly at 1:30. Bell Tower on Capitol Square, 101 N. 9th Street, Richmond, Virginia 23219.  Bring tombstones for clean air and water and be prepared to lie down. https://www.facebook.com/events/1562682110508889/
  • Monday: Stand with Union Hill: The Buckingham County Board of Supervisors will hold a hearing on Monday, July 9, 2018 to hear public input regarding a rezoning request to allow the Atlantic Coast Pipeline to install a “man camp” across from the proposed Union Hill compressor station.
  • Tuesday: 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.   Stand with Augusta County:  The Staunton Board of Zoning Appeals will hold a hearing on Tuesday, July 10, 2018, 2 p.m. in the Staunton City Council Chambers, on Dominion’s storage of equipment on a lot owned by Staunton Tractor, an improper use of the property which (according to the notice of violation) makes it, “a contractors’ establishment, serving as an operation staging site for a contractor.”

2. WRITE Virginia State Water Control Board members Robert Dunn, Lou Ann Jessee-Wallace, Timothy G. Hayes, Roberta A. Kellam, G. Nissa Dean, Heather Wood, and Robert H. Wayland III ℅ Roberta A. Kellam, P.O. Box 205, Franktown, Virginia 23354 and ask them to meet immediately to stay construction of the Mountain Valley and Atlantic Coast pipelines until full erosion and sediment control plans are completed, until a needed stream by stream analysis is complete, until legitimate legal challenges against the permit process for both pipelines have had their day in court, until our latest public comments have been examined, and until the numerous environmental violations and court judgments already incurred by both pipelines have rightful investigation and consequences.

3. CALL Governor Ralph Northam and ask that he reappoint State Water Control Board Member and steady water protector, Roberta Kellam whose term ended June 30.  Phone: (804) 786-2211  Email:  https://www.governor.virginia.gov/constituent-services/communicating-with-the-governors-office/  Sample email comment:  “I am writing to request that Governor Northam reappoint Roberta Kellam to the SWCB. Her knowledge and history with regard to Virginia’s water safety is invaluable. She has demonstrated fairness and discipline with regard to oversight of water safety standards and related permitting processes. Thank you for this consideration.”

4. CAMP!  Sign up to visit the Miracle Ridge No Pipeline Summer Camp organized by the Limpert family and Chesapeake Climate Action Network.  Witness and protect the old growth forest the Atlantic Coast Pipeline proposes to level.  http://chesapeakeclimate.org/blog/no-pipeline-summer-magic/#.WzqQ0ROdR0Q.facebook

5. TELL the story to the newcomer!  You were shocked by the facts of the corrupt robberies that are the ACP and MVP.  Keep sharing those facts. Letter to the Editor week? Some sources for that are here, but each member group of the Water is life. Protect it. Coalition and many other grassroots groups in Virginia have facts and videos you can share.   Here’s a fun fact for the newcomer: https://www.facebook.com/waterislifeprotectit/videos/2222624577763952/

6. WATCH! Keep your eyes open.  The citizen monitoring work to show Virginians and their leaders when and where the pipeline construction companies are violating our laws and their permits still needs more help.  FOR ACP: CSI Pipeline Monitoring
FOR MVP: Mountain Valley Watch  https://powhr.org/mvwatch/

7.  JOIN! a pipeline resistance group near your heart and near you and help them.  You, your talents, and your donations are needed.

8. ENLIGHTEN & ENLIST! 27 City and County Democratic Committees have issued public letters to Governor Northam asking that construction on the MVP and ACP be stayed until all the vital information is complete, until violations have been addressed, and until pending legal challenges to their permits have had their day in court. In addition to the 18 in the link below, Shenandoah County, Albemarle County, Charlottesville City,  Madison County, Alexandria, Louduon CoUnty and the city and county of Charlotte have sent such letters. Work with your community’s Democratic or Republican Committee to approve such a letter.  https://www.wsls.com/news/virginia-democrats-release-statement-against-mountain-valley-pipeline-atlantic-coast-pipeline

Stand with Union Hill


Stand with Union Hill: The Buckingham County Board of Supervisors will hold a hearing on Monday, July 9, 2018 to hear public input regarding a rezoning request to allow the Atlantic Coast Pipeline to install a “man camp” across from the proposed Union Hill compressor station.

Be there at 5 pm for peaceful witness at the meeting, which begins at 6:00 p.m. in the Peter Francisco Auditorium of the Buckingham County Administration Complex at 13380 W. James Anderson Hwy, Buckingham, Virginia 23921.

The Circle of Protection collaborators and Water is Life. Protect It. are asking for your presence and peaceful witness to this meeting and this proposal which represents a further violation of the zoning and comprehensive plan for Buckingham County.