Lessons Learned

These videos produced by Woody Greenberg and Ron Enders document Friends of Nelson’s six year fight against Dominion Energy’s Atlantic Coast Pipeline and the lessons learned from that struggle.

The videos cover five general topics that may be seen as a complete series (one hour and five minutes) or as individual segments.

  1. Organizing the community against the proposed pipeline. (12 min 13 sec)
  2. Legal strategies that succeeded in stopping the project. (15 min 38 sec)
  3. Public Relations strategies and tactics. (16 min 45 sec)
  4. Political strategies on the federal, state and local levels. (10 min 38 sec)
  5. Knowing the historical and other resources in your community. (9 min 58 sec)

There is also a link to all of the 19 interview sessions that covered the above topics. These are in-depth discussions of the topics for viewers interested in more details. They have been lightly edited for brevity and elimination of non-germane subjects.

In addition to these videos a Pipeline Fighters Guide was produced by Ron Enders and is available for free download. (Click Here)

ACP Fight

In the spring of 2014 Dominion Energy announced a proposal to build the Atlantic Coast Pipeline. This would have been a 600 mile natural (fracked) gas pipeline transporting fracked gas from the Marcellus Shale fields in West Virginia, through Virginia, and to southeastern North Carolina.

Nelson County was directly in the path and as soon as citizens heard about the pipeline they organized to resist it. Friends of Nelson formed into one of the most active groups along the route fighting for six years along with 53 other organizations.

In July of 2020, Dominion announced the cancellation of the ACP. Although this was a great time for celebration, FoN continued its work to request, on the behalf of landowners, the release of all easements where the property was acquired under the threat of eminent domain. This ongoing effort will continue until we have exhausted our possibilities to get these “zombie easements” returned to landowners for a project that was canceled and will never be built.



Reusable Bag Contest

In 2021, the Zero Waste Committee challenged students at Nelson Middle School to create a graphic to print on reusable bags. The contest was facilitated by Laurie Davis, art teacher; and also teachers Mary Haines-Johnson and Katrina Broughman who included the
Environmental club. A winner was chosen and 300 reusable bags were printed and distributed in the county and given away at local events.

ACP Easement Releases

Dominion Energy has agreed to return all easements to landowners. Landowners will keep all compensation.

For two and a half years the Niskanen Center, along with Joyce Burton (landowner liaison for Friends of Nelson) helped to turn this tide. This effort included a year-long partnership with Senator Tim Kaine’s office.

If you are a landowner on the canceled ACP route and want an expedited release (for example if you have plans for the property or you want to sell) please see the link below to contact the land agent in your area.

Virginia ACP Land Supervisor counties of Augusta, Bath, Buckingham, Cumberland, Highland, Nelson, and Prince Edward contact:

Dave Aman



~ Please note that your land agent may be different than the one you initially worked with. For all counties on the ACP route see the link here for your land agent.

Zero Waste

In the fall of 2020 as the fight against the Atlantic Coast Pipeline came to a close, members of the Friends of Nelson steering committee investigated other interests. A main interest that came to light was investigating waste streams in our county.

Friends of Nelson staffed a booth at the Nelson Farm Market to raise awareness around waste. Information on waste free household products was shared on a rotating basis with samples that were given away.

A community competition was entered to collect plastic films for recycling with the Trex company. Over 500lbs of plastic were collected in partnership with the Nellysford IGA and the Lovingston Food Lion. A Trex bench was awarded to friends of Nelson and donated
to the Rockfish Valley Community Center for their new outdoor landscaping. Plastic Films continue to be collected at both locations.


Contact Us

Find Us

P.O. Box 33
Nellysford, VA 22958

© Friends of Nelson 2023