From Wild Virginia:
MVP Sweetheart Deal Pulled from Must-pass Senate Bill
This evening, Senator Joe Manchin announced that he was asking that so-called “permitting reform” provisions be removed from the Continuing Resolution (CR), a budget bill that must be passed this week to avoid a government shutdown. The proposals Senator Manchin had offered were dangerous for the environment and disrespectful of the role members of the public should play in decisions that affect their lives and futures.
Especially egregious was the attempt to force federal agencies to give final approvals for the Mountain Valley Pipeline (MVP), despite the project’s inability to comply with our bedrock environmental laws – the Clean Water Act, the Endangered Species Act, the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA), and others. By removing the harmful language from the bill, the Senate will allow the normal environmental review processes to move forward, as they should.
The voices and activism of thousands of people helped force this decision and Wild Virginia is proud to be a part of this broad and dedicated coalition. Now we will continue the battle to end this project once and for all.
“This is the right outcome for today but we know MVP and its boosters will continue to seek special favors and to slide by the protective laws that should prohibit this pipeline from ever being completed,” said David Sligh, Conservation Director at Wild Virginia.
Wild Virginia expresses its sincere appreciation to Senator Tim Kaine, who pledged to oppose the CR if it included the Manchin proposals. Also, we thank Virginia members of the U.S. House of Representatives. Virginia members who joined a letter calling on any permitting provisions to be removed from the CR, include Rep. Donald McEachin, Rep. Bobby Scott, Rep. Gerry Connolly, and Rep. Abigail Spanberger. Rep. Morgan Griffith also spoke out against the special deal for MVP.
“The supposed justifications for this move by Manchin and his dirty energy allies – that the pipeline is almost complete, can be finished in a few months, and that it would help control fuel prices or ease overseas shortages – are all false,” Sligh stated.
Sligh continued: “That’s why they wanted to slide these favors through this larger bill. They knew they couldn’t win an open debate. We and our allies will continue to tell the decision makers the facts and insist that the public interest be fully protected. That will only be realized when the MVP is cancelled. The project’s owners must know the people will not stop or even slow our work until MVP is abandoned and the harm already inflicted can start to heal.”