Gas Pipeline is Needed

Nelson County Times – Letter to the Editor for April 16, 2015

I am writing in support of Dominion’s Atlantic Coast Pipeline project.

The need is very apparent, which is why both Republicans and Democrats support this project. I understand the opposition’s concerns, but for decades pipes have transported gas to various regions of the country, including right here in our back yard, Augusta County. The concerns are the same concerns we heard from the community when the interstate came through Virginia, when U.S. 29 came through Nelson County and frankly during any of large-scale public project through the years.

At my age, I have seen many public projects. For the last 40 years, on numerous occasions, I have seen comments similar to those made by the opposition used to stall or stop other public and private projects. The opposition forecasts turned out to be false then as they are with this project. While I am not insensitive to the concerns of affected property owners, I believe that their fears will easily be answered and addressed if they consider talking with Dominion representatives.

The Atlantic Coast Pipeline is an essential public utility project designed to meet urgent energy needs in Virginia and North Carolina. Natural gas transported through pipes of this nature have safely generated electricity to heat homes and run local businesses for decades. Because of the federal regulations by the Environmental Protection Agency, Dominion Virginia Power had to close the coal-fired Chesapeake Energy Center in December and will close the coal-fired units at the Yorktown Power Station next year. The energy-generation capacity needs to be replaced with clean-burning natural gas.

If we fail to do this project, we will have a serious depletion in energy generation, which will raise the cost for all energy consumers throughout our region. I therefore urge the community to join together in support of the Atlantic Coast Pipeline to ensure our energy future.