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W.Va. judge grants injunction in gas pipeline case

UNION, W.Va. — A Monroe County judge has granted an injunction sought by Doris and Bryan McCurdy, barring surveyors connected to the Mountain Valley Pipeline project from entering the couple’s Greenville property without permission.

The crux of the plaintiffs’ motion, as described by Derek Teaney, senior attorney with Appalachian Mountain Advocates, is the failure of the developers of the Mountain Valley Pipeline (MVP) to demonstrate that the line will serve a public use for the people of West Virginia. Without that, Teaney argued in court Wednesday, MVP does not meet the state statute’s requirements to be granted the powers of eminent domain, under which surveyors could access property against the wishes of the landowner.

 The 300-mile natural gas pipeline, which will stretch from Wetzel County, W.Va., to the Virginia coast, will provide little, if any, gas to the Mountain State, according to Teaney. “The gas is not going to be used by West Virginians along most of the pipeline,” he said, adding, “There’s no public use in Monroe County.”

MVP witness Shawn Posie, a vice president with EQT, one of the partner corporations developing the pipeline, conceded as much under cross-examination by Teaney. Asked to identify gas utility companies that have made commitments to purchase gas out of the MVP, Posie said, “I’m personally not aware of firm commitments.” Pressed to identify any planned “taps” into the line for West Virginia utility use, Posie responded, “I am aware of none…


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