On June 5, 2017, the Dominion Pipeline Monitoring Coalition (DPMC) filed suit against the Virginia Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) in state Circuit Court for the City of Richmond.
DPMC is asking the court to rule that DEQ issued a Clean Water Act section 401 Water Quality Certification for construction of utility lines, including natural gas pipelines, in state waters without legal authority to do so and without ensuring water quality would be protected.
DEQ’s general Water Quality Certification was issued on April 7, 2017 for a U.S. Army Corps of Engineers’ general permit, named Nationwide Permit No. 12, that also addresses utility line impacts on streams and wetlands. A party cannot begin a project that affects waterbodies under the Corps of Engineers permit unless Virginia certifies that the work allowed under the federal permit will meet all state water protection requirements. DPMC asserts that DEQ failed to provide such assurances to properly protect Virginia waters and those who use them.
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