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Supreme Court Won’t Revisit Mountain Valley Pipeline Case

The Supreme Court will not review a D.C. Circuit decision dismissing a suit brought by a group of Virginia landowners against the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission regarding the agency’s eminent domain authority in the Mountain Valley Pipeline case, it said this week (Cardinal News).

What’s going on: “Since 2020, the six [landowners] have argued that Congress erred in giving the legislative power of eminent domain to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, an agency that oversees interstate pipeline construction. The commission allowed pipeline developers to take private property for the 303-mile natural gas project from West Virginia into southern Virginia, deeming it to be in the public interest.”

  • In December, the Supreme Court said it would not temporarily stop the project’s developers from constructing a section of the pipeline that runs through the landowners’ property.
  • And last July, the court dismissed an injunction against the developers from a lower court, allowing construction—which had been paused—to restart.

Why it’s important: The $7.85 billion Mountain Valley Pipeline, which was previously slated for completion in the early part of this year, is the only natural gas project under construction in Appalachia.

  • Once it comes online—which developers now believe it will do at the end of this month—the pipeline will bring clean, affordable energy to homes and businesses throughout the eastern U.S.

Our view: “The completion of the Mountain Valley Pipeline is critical to our nation’s energy security, which is why the NAM has urged Congress to ensure that judicial review is part of any much-needed future permitting reform legislation,” said NAM Director of Energy and Resources Policy Michael Davin. “Long, costly legal battles such as the one the MVP has experienced dissuade project development and make it harder for manufacturers to do their jobs.”

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