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End of Atlantic Coast Pipeline exciting news for those fighting against it

The Alliance for the Shenandoah Valley supports conserving the Valley's character, scenic beauty, clean water and communities, and Nancy Sorrells said the Atlantic Coast Pipeline would cause a lot of environmental damage.
The Alliance for the Shenandoah Valley supports conserving the Valley's character, scenic beauty, clean water and communities, and Nancy Sorrells said the Atlantic Coast Pipeline would cause a lot of environmental damage.(WHSV)
Published: Jul. 6, 2020 at 6:41 PM EDT
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AUGUSTA COUNTY, Va. (WHSV) — Over the weekend, Dominion and Duke Energy announced their decision to cancel the Atlantic Coast Pipeline. For some in Augusta County, the end of the pipeline is something they have fought for a long time.

Nancy Sorrells is the Augusta County coordinator for the Alliance for the Shenandoah Valley. When she first heard the news, Sorrells said she thought she was dreaming.

"People's land is protected, people's livelihoods is protected, people's drinking water and safety is protected," Sorrells said. "So it's just great news for the people."

Over the past six years, Sorrells said thousands of people have pushed against the pipeline as part of a grassroots effort. Sorrells said people have put signs in their yard, protested, went to meetings to fight back against pipe yards in the valley, and pushed back on an individual level. This year, Sorrells said they fought the ACP all the way to the Supreme Court.

Sorrells said she does not think there are really any winners or losers. Instead, she hopes this will be a turning point.

"We want a world with a company that provides the needed energy that we all need to survive in this world, but it partners with our communities rather than profiting from our communities," Sorrells said.

She added she wants to see energy companies working toward more sustainable energy sources, that will protect the environment for generations to come.

On Sunday, Dominion and Duke Energy released a statement, saying in part “We regret that we will be unable to complete the Atlantic Coast Pipeline. For almost six years we have worked diligently and invested billions of dollars to complete the project and deliver the much-needed infrastructure to our customers and communities. Throughout we have engaged extensively with and incorporated feedback from local communities, labor and industrial leaders, government and permitting agencies, environmental interests and social justice organizations.”

The statement says due to legal challenges on the state and federal level, there have been cost increases and delays on the project. Those, combined with the possibility of future legal challenges, make continuing on the project too uncertain to justify, according to the release.

The pipeline was initially announced in 2014 and would have gone through West Virginia, Virginia, including parts of the Shenandoah Valley, and North Carolina.

Copyright 2020 WHSV. All rights reserved.

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