Pipeline forum is needed in Buckingham

Published 10:28 am Thursday, September 3, 2015

The Buckingham County Board of Supervisors needs to do the right thing and hold a matter-of-record public forum about the proposed Atlantic Coast Pipeline (ACP).

In addition to the landowners and citizens — both for and against the project — coming out to have their voices heard on their own turf, ACP, LLC and Dominion should be there.

Since the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) held its scoping meeting in Prince Edward in March, several changes have been made to the project.

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It’s only fair that the citizens get their voices heard on the latest proposal.

Significant changes have been made to the route in Buckingham, affecting new landowners, and the compressor station’s horsepower has increased significantly. A site has been chosen for the station, which will affect additional landowners.

If Dominion and the ACP want to be good neighbors for the people of Buckingham like they say they want to be, they’ll accept the county’s invitation and attend.

Dominion should be more than happy to present the latest information about the ACP during this forum and should be willing to hear citizens’ comments, good, bad or indifferent.

We understand that the board of supervisors is effectively powerless — as some of its members have pointed out — in this massive project being proposed by one of the largest and most powerful corporations in the state. But county supervisors and Dominion owe it to the citizens to answer their questions and hear their concerns, especially after the county was told that it would have its own FERC scoping meeting, which never happened.

The information and comments presented during this forum should be documented and sent to FERC by the county.

Dominon’s presence would certainly be a good gesture for the people of Buckingham while the board’s forum for citizens would present a much-needed dialogue.