A major report has been released today and attached to this release on the failure of the Atlantic Coast Pipeline (ACP) to demonstrate economic development benefit to the State of North Carolina. The Report is entitled: “The Failure of the Atlantic Coast Pipeline to Demonstrate Economic Development Benefit to the NC Department of Environmental Quality and the Public of North Carolina“.
With data compiled by Ms. Nancy LaPlaca, national Energy Consultant from Boone, NC, and released by the Alliance to Protect our People and the Places We Live (APPPL) documents the response of the ACP to repeated attempts by the NC Department of Environmental Quality to receive concrete, detailed information on economic development impact along the pipeline route, focusing on the three most impacted counties where the pipeline has proposed to construct three Metering and Regulating (M&R Stations).
The report documents, in detail, how the ACP has avoided answering official questions and has sidestepped every attempt of DEQ to acquire this information. Lawsuits by landowners are also pending in both Robeson and Cumberland Counties two of the three counties in question. Both lawsuits are based on similar charges that the Robeson County Board of Commissioners, the Cumberland County Board of Adjustment failed to follow regulatory standards for public hearings in which landowners and citizens sought answers to some of the very same questions that the NC DEQ has asked.
In its conclusion, the attached and extensive, 14-page report calls for the NC Department of Environmental Quality to hold three public hearings in Robeson, Cumberland, and Johnston Counties in order to:
“provide broad public exposure to the ACP’s claims of economic development and offer the public opportunities to respond with questions, concerns, support, opposition, and suggestions. Public input on these critical issues will assist the NC DEQ in framing its final questions regarding economic development and an additional attempt to access the details needed to make an informed and fair assessment of the economic development impact, or lack thereof, of the Atlantic Coast Pipeline” (p. 10).
The report raises serious questions about the proposed pipeline and the danger of committing our state to a new level of dependency on a highly volatile and financially unstable fossil fuel, energy source at the same time we as a state are moving toward a significant commitment to renewable energy sources.
The report also raises concerns about how the scope and the scale of the Atlantic Coast Pipeline has changed after the announcement of interests, that were adamantly denied, that there were plans to expand the pipeline into South Carolina. The report suggests that the scope and scale are significant enough for North Carolina to consider disapproval of the pipeline and requiring it to re-apply based on infrastructure plans that reflect this intent and plan..
The report recognizes Governor Cooper’s advocacy to protect our coastal communities and State from off-shore drilling and asks for the same protection for NC’s most vulnerable environment and populations against a more serious threat to human health and safety:
“His strong commitment to protect our coastal communities of wealth and favor has not been equaled by a commitment to protect our state’s most vulnerable environment and populations from an even greater threat to human health and safety – the proposed Atlantic Coast Pipeline” (p. 10).
Media are free to post the report online. APPPL will distribute a second Media Release this afternoon with quotes from landowners impacted by the proposed Atlantic Coast Pipeline, including litigants in the Robeson and Cumberland County lawsuits.
APPPL asks that reporters forward this release and the report to members of your Editorial Staffs for further review, analysis, and public discourse.
For more information and inquiries, please contact:
Mac Legerton, Alliance to Protect our People and the Places We Live (APPPL) at firstname.lastname@example.org.