Pipeline Monitoring Coalition Formed
A new entity has joined the Allegheny Blue Ridge Alliance, the coalition formed by regional organizations in opposition to Dominion Resources Atlantic Coast Pipeline project. The Dominion Pipeline Monitoring Coalition, headed by Highlanders for Responsible Development Board member Rick Webb, plans to provide public oversight of the project, through review of site plans and permit applications, and ground and aerial surveillance for compliance with water related regulations should project construction begin.
The pipeline’s path takes it over numerous mountain ranges from 3,000 to 4,400 feet in elevation. Excavation for and construction of a 42 inch pipeline in this type of terrain is unprecedented, and the DCMP is particularly concerned about potential water issues. Because the route crosses the divide between major river basins, it could impact the upper reaches of multiple mountain headwater streams, many of which provide habitat for the region’s native brook trout and drinking water for downstream communities.
The DPMC effort currently involves numerous trained citizens and scientists who are engaged in research related to the regulatory review process, as well as in analysis of ecological conditions in the proposed pipeline corridor.
A key element in the DPMC surveillance program is the volunteer citizen Pipeline Air Force, which will observe and document construction from the air. At present this includes three planes, and the DPMC is seeking the participation of additional pilots with planes.
In addition to aerial surveillance, the DPMC plans to promote and support the involvement of regional citizen water quality monitoring groups to obtain baseline and post-construction water quality data in relation to the proposed pipeline corridor and its associated infrastructure, such as transport roads and staging areas.
Any group or individual concerned about the pipeline or wanting to participate in the DPMC’s efforts can contact coordinator Webb at email@example.com for information and updates.