Richmond, VA - On Friday, Virginia’s State Corporation Commission (SCC) delivered a key victory to advocates hoping to defeat the buildout of the Header natural gas project with a ruling that the agency was withholding the project’s certificate of compliance.
Food & Water Watch has been working to stop this project for nearly a year because the Header project, which would include 3 new pipelines and 3 new compressor stations, would harm the environment and further exacerbate climate change. They’ve also argued that the project would lead to rate increases for Virginia Natural Gas customers to pay for the project even though customers would not directly benefit from the new buildout.
Although the SCC did not allow the Header project to move forward, the agency still gave the company another chance by tying the project’s fate to the buildout of the C4GT fracked gas plant the Header project is meant to service. In the ruling, the SCC gives VNG the opportunity to reapply if the company can provide proof the C4GT’s financial backing is solid and that the Header project will establish a 20-year financing plan instead of the company’s original 70-year plan.
In response, Jolene Mafnas, Virginia Organizer for Food & Water Action, issued the following statement:
“For years, Virginia has been ravaged and threatened by huge pipeline projects like the Mountain Valley and Atlantic Coast pipelines, and this year it faced another: the Virginia Header Project. The SCC’s decision to withhold its permit until the project qualifies for certain conditions that seem to be impossible to meet, is a win for anti-pipeline fighters everywhere.There’s still some major projects we must defeat including the MVP, ACP, the C4GT and Chickahominy Power Plants, but this decision shows we have the power to stop them.”