The Atlantic Coast Pipeline, a multi-billion dollar natural gas pipeline that was planned for a 600-mile section of North Carolina, Virginia, and West Virginia has been scrapped. The two companies that partnered on the project, Duke Energy and Dominion Energy of Charlotte, North Carolina, and Richmond, Virginia respectively, made the announcement after years of delays and legal conflicts. The news has many people in Texas who are familiar with the issue wondering aloud regarding the developments.
The announcement came as a bit of surprise to legal experts and other individuals concerned with eminent domain laws. The first of the possible reasons that may explain the decision to scrap the proposed pipeline is the fact that the cost of the project had doubled to $8 billion.
A second problem is uncertainty surrounding the latest targeted completion date in early 2022. Even if this latest goal was met, the end of the project would come three and a half years after the original project deadline.
The plan for the pipeline was first made public in 2014. Planners figured the project gained a boost when Trump became president in 2016. The thinking was that the desire Trump and his administration expressed to decrease the federal oversight attached to such projects would allow the pipeline to be completed relatively quickly.
The groups that opposed the pipeline included environmental activists and members of the African American community who live in Buckingham County, Virginia. Many of these families can trace their roots in the area back to slavery and were strongly opposed to leaving their homes so that a station for natural gas compression could be built in their community.
While it is true that eminent domain regulations provide governments with the right to take control of the private property of citizens for public use, this does not mean that private property owners are without rights in the matter. Individuals with concerns pertaining to eminent domain regulations may benefit from talking to an attorney who practices this area of the law.