Air Board Denies Key Permit For Mountain Valley Pipeline

Today, in a victory for environmental justice, the Virginia Air Pollution Control Board voted 6-1 to deny the air quality permit for the proposed Lambert Compressor Station. The station would have connected the beleaguered Mountain Valley Pipeline to a proposed ‘Southgate’ extension into North Carolina. Had the permit been granted, nearby communities would be subjected to additional air emissions of carbon monoxide, particulate matter 2.5, and formaldehyde — substances known to contribute to respiratory problems, heart disease and cancer. The permit denial is a clear victory for communities working tirelessly to protect their health and homes from corporate polluters — and a major setback for the Mountain Valley Pipeline.

Continue reading

Mountain Valley Pipeline Protesters Lock Down, Block Construction

Lindside, WV — Early Tuesday morning, two Mountain Valley Pipeline protesters locked themselves to construction equipment at a construction site in Lindside, WV. A rally of nearly a dozen supporters gathered nearby. Banners at the site read, “PIPELINES STINK,” “SOLIDARITY WITH STOP LINE 3,” and “AIN’T SCARED.”

As of 11 AM, one protester had been extracted and arrested after preventing construction at the site for over 5 hours. The other was in the process of being extracted by law enforcement.

Those locked down stated, “A better world isn’t just possible, it’s necessary. As we write this, wildfires rage and major cities are recovering from unprecedented flooding. We’re not running out of time to address global climate change, we’re already out.

Continue reading

Science Shows We Must Stop Pipelines: This Is How We Do It

A new report finds that almost one-third of people living in the United States have been directly impacted by the climate crisis so far this year. This includes fires, floods and extreme heat. The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) states that the climate crisis is undoubtedly being caused by human behavior. We must stop emitting carbon now but pipelines for oil and gas are still being built across the country. Clearing the FOG speaks with Deborah Kushner of Appalachians Against Pipelines about her work to stop the Atlantic Coast and Mountain Valley Pipelines. Deborah and two others shut down construction of the MVP in June. Their trial took place last week. She talks about pipeline resistance and how she found the courage to take action. 

Continue reading

Defenders Of Homes, Hills, And Heritage Unite Against Pipeline

Though it’s been under construction for the past three years—and in discussion since 2014—the Mountain Valley Pipeline (MVP) has been somewhat easy to overlook. Easy, that is, for those who don’t live along its proposed route: West Virginia landowner Maury Johnson calls it the “ugly stepchild of pipelines” because, compared to high-profile pipeline fights like that against Keystone XL, for a long time only a small segment of Appalachian residents seemed to be talking about the 303-mile MVP.

As Gillian Giannetti, an NRDC attorney who focuses on energy issues at the Federal Energy Regulation Commission (FERC), explains, MVP has likely received less national attention because it passes through a rural, low-income part of Virginia, through places even many Virginians themselves haven’t visited.

Continue reading

Pipeline Fighters Lock Themselves To Drill Equipment At Crossing Of I-64

Lawn, WV — Early Friday morning, two pipeline fighters locked themselves to drill equipment at the site where the Mountain Valley Pipeline crosses under Interstate 64 in Greenbrier County, WV. Their action halted work at the site for 2.5 hours, until both people were extracted and arrested. A banner at the site read, “MVP Is Deadly; Doom To The Pipeline”.

Both protesters were arrested before 8:30 AM. One person was charged with 6 misdemeanors, with bail set at $7,500. The other was charged with 4 misdemeanors, with bail set at $5,000. Both were bailed out on Friday.

“In the expansive timeline of industrial extraction, halting work for a single day might feel molecular, but today’s action is anything but isolated,” stated one of the people locked to the drill.

Continue reading

Old Hills And Old Folks Resist The Mountain Valley Pipeline

Bent Mountain, VA – On Wednesday, June 30, 2021 at 5:30 A.M., Deborah Kushner, Alan Moore, and Bridget Kelley locked themselves in and to a broken down vehicle on Honeysuckle Road, blocking Mountain Valley Pipeline’s access to the pipeline easement, a work yard, and 2 access roads. Written on the vehicle blockade are slogans including: “Old Hills & Old Folks Resist,” “Protect What You Love,” “McAuliffe’s Climate Catastrophe,” “Land Back,” and “Water Is Life.” Nearly 20 people rallied on site in support of today’s blockade.

At 12:45 P.M., law enforcement issued a dispersal order for the rally of supporters. By 2:30 P.M., they began extracting the 3 folks locked to the blockade vehicle.

Continue reading

Women Run 415 Miles To Protest The Mountain Valley Pipeline

Bent Mountain, VA – The Mountain Valley Pipeline protest community came together Sunday at the Bent Mountain Center to thank and commend three women who are running and cycling alongside the MVP construction path.

MVP protesters held a feast to celebrate the women who are running and cycling 415 miles from West Virginia to Virginia, paralleling the pipeline.

“We’re all runners, so to be able to take something that we enjoy to be able to raise awareness to the issues that are happening, it’s important to us,” MVP protest runner Katie Thompson said.

Sarah Hodder, Merecedes Walters and Thompson started their 10-day relay-style running and cycling journey April 24 and as of Sunday, May 2, have two days left.

Continue reading

Second Tree Sitter Extracted On Final Day Of Yellow Finch Blockade

On Wednesday, March 24th, 2021, the second and final tree sitter at the Yellow Finch blockade in the path of the Mountain Valley Pipeline was extracted and arrested. This follows the Tuesday arrest of another tree sitter, and marks the final day — day 932 — of the Yellow Finch blockade. 

After Tuesday’s extraction, police remained on site overnight, shining spotlights at the remaining tree sit. MVP began work again this morning around 7 a.m. By 8 a.m., a rally of local supporters had formed nearby. Around 10 a.m., the large crane that police had brought on site began moving towards the remaining tree sitter, and around 12 p.m. they were cut from the lockbox that they had used to lock themself to the tree, extracted, and arrested. 

Continue reading

Mountain Valley Pipeline Extracts One Tree Sitter At Yellow Finch Blockade

Elliston, VA –  On Tuesday, March 23rd, 2021, police extracted one of two tree sitters at the Yellow Finch blockade in the path of the Mountain Valley Pipeline. A large crane was used to reach the tree sit from Yellow Finch Lane and extract the sitter, who had locked themself to the tree. They were arrested, charged with trespassing, and are being held without bond (set by the Montgomery County magistrate). Today is day 931 of the Yellow Finch Tree sits. As of 9:00 p.m., the second tree sitter remains in their blockade.

Continue reading

Mountain Valley Pipeline Project Remains Stalled In Legal Limbo

It was a shock to the system.

That’s how EQT President and CEO Toby Rice described the impact of the July cancellation of the Atlantic Coast Pipeline. Rice made the allusion during EQT’s third-quarter earnings call Thursday while reporting talks with four or five other unnamed companies to offload some or all of EQT’s Mountain Valley Pipeline capacity.

Environmentalists hope Mountain Valley is headed for the same fate as Atlantic Coast and view the natural gas industry’s recent slide as evidence the market might be on their side.

Continue reading

Mountain Valley Pipeline Water Permit Denied

Another natural gas pipeline in North Carolina has been derailed, at least temporarily, as the North Carolina Department of Environmental Quality has denied a water quality permit for the MVP Southgate project that would route through Rockingham and Alamance counties.

In a letter released this afternoon, Division of Water Resources Director Danny Smith wrote, “Due to uncertainty surrounding the completion of the MVP Mainline project,” it has determined that “work on the Southgate extension could lead to unnecessary water quality impacts and disturbance of the environment in North Carolina.”

Continue reading

Appeals Court Orders Stay Of Mountain Valley Pipeline Permit

Virginia – Already slowed by the loss of two permits and a lawsuit that challenges a third one, construction of the Mountain Valley Pipeline hit another major roadblock Friday.

The 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals ordered a stay to a permit from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, pending its review of lawsuit brought by environmental groups headed by the Sierra Club.

Following the late afternoon stay, the club said it “effectively means construction must stop” on the 303-mile pipeline.

Mountain Valley suspended new construction on some stretches of the pipeline in August, three days after the lawsuit claimed that an approval from the Fish and Wildlife Service failed to adequately protect endangered species in the project’s path.

Attorneys for the Sierra Club, which filed the challenge on behalf of seven groups, argued that the voluntary suspension did not go far enough.

Continue reading

Raging Granny Locks Herself To Equipment At Mountain Valley Pipeline Site

Montgomery County, VA — Early this morning, Duff Benjamin, a 75-year-old midwife, grandmother, and self-identified “raging granny” locked herself to Mountain Valley Pipeline construction equipment in Montgomery County, VA. Next to a banner reading “PIPELINES BLOW,” Duff shut down construction adjacent to Cove Hollow Road (nearby the ongoing tree sit blockade). She blocked work for 5 hours before being extracted, arrested, and charged with 5 misdemeanors. She has since been bailed out of jail.

Duff stated: “The problem with pipelines is they always leak. What they leak are toxins into the land, water, and air. The other problem with pipelines is that they frequently explode, and when they do, it’s the equivalent of a dirty bomb going off into poor, Black, and Latino neighborhoods — communities that pipelines are purposely routed through and near (never through wealthy white neighborhoods!).

Continue reading

Water Protectors Shut Down Mountain Valley Pipeline Work Site

Greenbrier County, WV — Early this morning, 3 water protectors locked themselves to 3 separate excavators at a Mountain Valley Pipeline site outside of Rainelle, WV. These 3 individuals prevented work at the site for over 3 hours, before being extracted and arrested just after 9 am. 1 additional supporter was arrested near the site while walking on a public road. Banners at the site read, “VIOLENCE AGAINST MOTHER EARTH IS VIOLENCE AGAINST OUR SISTERS” and “AIN’T SCARED. STILL FIGHTIN.” The 4 arrested individuals were charged with misdemeanors; bail was set between $500 – $2,500 for each person. All 4 have been released.

Cherri Foytlin, afro-Indigenous mother of 6 with Extinction Rebellion, explained: “A little under a year ago, while I was fighting to keep the Bayou Bridge Pipeline from crossing our land, I was attacked by someone who thought their threats and acts of violence would quiet my sensible demand for clean water for generations yet to come. I am here today to say: I will not fear cowardly men when it comes to protecting Unci Maka (our Grandmother Earth). “

Continue reading

Protesters Prevent Mountain Valley Pipeline Drilling

Greenbrier County, WV (August 29) — Early this morning, two pipeline fighters locked themselves to equipment at a Mountain Valley Pipeline work site adjacent to Interstate 64 in WV. One person was locked to an excavator on site, the other to the drill that MVP intends to use to bore under the interstate. A banner at the site read “ABOLISH BORDERS, DECOLONIZE LAND, DEFEND LIFE ON EARTH,” and a banner seen simultaneously from I-64 read “STOP WORK, JOIN US, EXIT HERE.” 

The two pipeline fighters were locked to equipment for approximately 2 hours this morning. During this time, before law enforcement arrived, one of them was assaulted by a Mountain Valley Pipeline employee who attempted to force the protester out of their lock box, hitting the protester’s face against the excavator in the process.

Continue reading