Happy new year! We are pleased to share with you this article in the Nelson County Times recently about the return of landowner easements on the canceled Atlantic Coast Pipeline.
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:
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.
Together we are stronger!
Come catch up with Friends of Nelson and enjoy a unique screening of a video from our Lessons Learned Project!
The Lessons Learned Project is a video interview documentary, and associated publication, of Nelson County citizens on the fight against the Atlantic coast pipeline. It highlights the lessons learned through our organization and the ensuing battle to victory and is meant to be available as a resource for other groups.
Please join us at 7pm on the evening of October 1st. 2022 at the Rockfish Valley Community Center.
Refreshments will be available.
Help us gauge attendance by registering at the link below;
Friends of Nelson continues the fight to convince FERC to order Dominion to cancel all easements in Nelson County and elsewhere on the proposed path of the now abandoned Atlantic Coast Pipeline
Although Dominion has abandoned the Atlantic Coast Pipeline and will never build it, they stubbornly refuses to cancel the easements that it acquired to build the Pipeline. These easements were obtained by suing landowners, with the blessing of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC or the Commission) or by threatening to sue them in Federal Court. Since the Pipeline was cancelled 14 months ago, there is no justification for Dominion to keep the easements. The easements held by Dominion are a serious, continuing and completely unwarranted burden on as many as 200 easements in Nelson County.
FERC then decided to produce a Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement (SEIS) to evaluate the Restoration Plan and assist the FERC Commissioners in deciding whether or not to issue an Order approving ACP’s plans. They opened a “scoping period” to formally solicit comments from stakeholders that would help FERC do its environmental analysis.
On July 23, 2021, FERC published published the Draft SEIS and basically said ‘not my department’ and they continue to duck the easement issue. Friends of Nelson refuses to allow FERC to sit on the sidelines.
On Monday, September 13, Friends of Nelson filed its third set of comments with FERC regarding these issues.
In a summary of those comments, Friends of Nelson, argues that:
‘These comments present the Commission with a clear choice – that is, the Commission may act “in the public interest” and “for the public convenience and necessity” and order Atlantic to immediately release all easements that it obtained for the now-abandoned ACP if requested by the landowner. In so doing, the Commission will end the serious burdens on private land that are imposed by these easements, easements that were obtained by Atlantic by legal force or coercion when the Commission issued the certificate of public necessity and convenience for the ACP (the “Certificate”). Or, the Commission may act “in the private interest” and “for the private convenience and necessity” of Atlantic and permit Atlantic to retain the temporary and permanent easements for many years to come and to extract further financial or other concessions from the affected property owners even though the sole reason for the easements to exist, and the sole “public interest” justification for the easements – the construction of the ACP – no longer exists. We submit that it is the Commission’s responsibility to act solely “in the public interest” and “for the public convenience and necessity,” and to reject Atlantic’s attempts to retain the easements “in its private interest.”’
Lawyers at the Southern Environmental Law Center and the Niskanen Center also
have submitted multiple comments on behalf of Friends of Nelson and others, pointing out that
Dominion refuses to deal with the issue of restoring landowners’ property rights.
Friends of Nelson will continue to press FERC at every point to require Dominion to cancel the easements, and leave our neighbors alone to enjoy their land unfettered by Dominion’s heavy-handed restrictions.
It’s been just over a year since Dominion and its utility partners announced they were scrapping plans for a pipeline to carry natural gas from the fracking fields of West Virginia through Virginia to North Carolina. Opponents were thrilled, but the fight isn’t over yet.
Audio and written story by Sandy Hausman forRadio IQ. August 5th, 2021
Please join us to celebrate our incredible Nelson Community and our incredible collective victory over the ACP project.
The focus of the event is on the fact that this was done by ALL of us, that ALL the contributions large and small added up to the outcome.
This is our chance to say thank you to each other and to honor the connections we’ve built over the last 6-7 years, as well as to set an intention for the connections and community spirit we built to continue into the future, even in the absence of a “common enemy” like the ACP.
The celebration will be from 5pm-9pm on Saturday, July 10th at the Rockfish Valley Community Center and will include libations, musical entertainment, guest speakers, and even a food truck.
SAVE THE DATE: JULY 10, 2021
ON JULY 5, 2020, THE ACP WAS CANCELED. WE WANTED A
REAL CELEBRATION, BUT THE PANDEMIC MADE THAT IMPOSSIBLE.
NOW MANY OF US ARE VACCINATED AND THE RESTRICTIONS
ON LARGE GATHERINGS HAVE BEEN LOOSENED.
SO…. IT’S TIME TO PARTY!!!
VENUE: ROCKFISH VALLEY COMMUNITY CENTER—OUTSIDE,
WITH TENTS, TABLES AND SEATING
TIME: 5-9 PM
FURTHER DETAILS TO FOLLOW.
JOIN THE FUN AND FELLOWSHIP—WE’VE EARNED IT!