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DEP: ‘Security concerns’ hampered plans for hearing on pipeline permit

By KATE MISHKIN

Charleston Gazette-Mail

CHARLESTON, W.Va. — The West Virginia Department of Environmental Protection scheduled a public hearing for a pipeline permit in Jefferson County, but then canceled the hearing over “security concerns” and quietly issued the permit.

Residents and lawmakers in Jefferson County had requested a public hearing for the 4.85-mile-long natural gas pipeline, which would be built by Mountaineer Gas and deliver gas to Rockwool, a controversial 460,000-square-foot coal- and gas-fired manufacturing plant being built in the City of Ranson, off Route 9.

The DEP had initially scheduled a public hearing for the extension project for Feb. 21 at the Ranson Civic Center, in Jefferson County. Five days before the event, the DEP issued a press release citing logistical concerns “raised by local officials.”

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