OPPOSE SB 657
SB 657, the Air and Water Pollution Bill, has passed out of the Senate committee and will be headed to the full senate.
Based on lies by Mountain Valley Pipeline's partner Equitrans Midstream, the Senate committee voted to pass the bill onto the full Senate. SB 657 would take the regulatory and permitting authority away from the citizen boards and give it to the DEQ, an agency who has been failing to protect our environment.
State code already requires the Air Pollution Control and the State Water Control citizen boards to pass permit recommendations by the Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) staff, unless there are specific reasons not to. When the Air Pollution Control Board (APCB) asked specific questions during the permit hearing for MVP Southgate, the DEQ hadn't done the research to be able to answer their questions. The APCB listened to the many scientists who presented data that substantiated that issuing the MVP permit wouldn't be in compliance with Environmental Justice (EJ) state and federal laws. The Fourth Circuit Court had invalidated the APCB's permit for the Union Hill air compressor station for the Atlantic Coast Pipeline as being arbitrary and capricious based on EJ state and federal laws.
Recently, the 4th Circuit Court vacated permits for the MVP because the government agencies failed to protect environmental laws. Want to know more about how the DEQ has been failing to protect our water and needs citizen board oversight? Check out this Virginia Mercury article DEQ is still failing to protect water from MVP and this slide presentation with video and GPS date and time stamped photographic evidence.