Gas pipeline makes sense for environment

Published 6:40 pm Friday, January 6, 2017

To the editor:

As a practicing engineering geologist in Virginia, I am keenly aware of the beauty of our state and the need to be good custodians to ensure that the environment is not overly impacted by new and potentially unnecessary infrastructure.

However, new infrastructure is required at times, both to ensure that we continue to develop economically and to be able to remove old infrastructure as it reaches the end of its design life. A further benefit can come if the new infrastructure provides the cleaner technologies that we strive for.
Such is the case for the Atlantic Coast Pipeline. The project has gone through a detailed study, and the draft environmental impact statement has been issued, which reinforces the positive impacts for Virginia’s energy infrastructure now and into the future.

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The study, which noted a high level of public participation, states the ACP will “result in some adverse effects, but with Atlantic’s and DTI’s implementation of their respective impact avoidance, minimization, and mitigation measures as well as their adherence to our recommendations to further avoid, minimize, and mitigate these impacts, the majority of project effects would be reduced to less-than-significant levels.”

The EIS process is how infrastructure is evaluated and is generally considered to be fair and impartial.
Construction of this new pipeline would allow for environmentally cleaner natural gas to be more widely available in markets, including parts of Hampton Roads. It would allow redundancy in the system, which would eventually allow older pipelines to be decommissioned before leaks develop. And it would provide additional jobs for rural areas of Virginia that are need of stimulus.]

Considering the positive impacts for the environment and the economy, I am in favor of this project.

David Sackett