State Denies Water Quality Certification for MVP Southgate Pipeline

Raleigh, North Carolina

The North Carolina Department of Environmental Quality’s Division of Water Resources has denied the request for a 401 Water Quality Certification and Jordan Lake Riparian Buffer Authorization for the Mountain Valley Pipeline (MVP) Southgate project. Due to uncertainty surrounding the completion of the MVP Mainline project, the Division has determined that work on the Southgate extension could lead to unnecessary water quality impacts and disturbance of the environment in North Carolina. 

The decision letter from the Division director and the hearings officer’s report are available here.

Based on review of the application and related materials and information, Division staff have determined the MVP Southgate project’s sole utility and purpose is tied to and wholly relies on, the completion of the entire MVP Mainline project. The MVP Mainline project would terminate in southern Virginia and provide natural gas for delivery to North Carolina through the MVP Southgate project.  The uncertainty of the MVP Mainline project’s completion presents a critical risk to the achievability of the fundamental purpose of MVP Southgate. As the Environmental Impact Statement noted, most of the adverse environmental impacts would occur during construction. Thus, the Division finds it is inappropriate to unnecessarily risk impacting high‐quality waters and critical drinking water supplies of North Carolinians.

The Federal Energy Regulatory Commissions (FERC) Certificate of Public Convenience and Necessity issued in June 2020 included the condition that work on MVP Southgate could not proceed until the MVP Mainline project had all of the federal permits for the project in hand.  

Information and documents related to the MVP Southgate project are available at https://deq.nc.gov/mountain-valley-pipeline.

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