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FERC OKs More ACP Construction; Project Opting for 'Incremental Approach’

FERC has granted Atlantic Coast Pipeline (ACP) another notice to proceed with construction activities, authorizing work to begin on contractor yards in West Virginia and North Carolina.

The notice is another step forward for the 600-mile, 1.5 Bcf/d pipeline that’s designed to carry more Appalachian natural gas to the Southeast. The contractor yards would be among others along the route where construction materials are be stored and for personnel.

While the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission granted requests to begin work on two yards in Upshur County, WV, and Halifax County, NC, it did not authorize another request to start construction on a yard and access roads in Cumberland County, NC. The Commission said ACP must first address discrepancies related to the crossing method put forward for a waterbody at that site.

The project has already received several notices to proceed with construction, including for tree felling and vegetation clearing in all three states and in national forests, as well as for clearing and site grading at some compressor stations and contractor yards, and for full construction of compressor stations, yards and other sites.

It’s becoming more common for larger pipeline projects to file various notices to proceed with FERC instead of one overarching request. The Mountain Valley Pipeline, a similar project designed to carry 2 Bcf/d from Appalachia to the Southeast, has taken a similar approach.

“It’s an incremental approach that will eventually lead to a final notice to proceed with full construction this spring,” said ACP spokesman Aaron Ruby. The project is still waiting for key regulatory approvals in Virginia, but it remains on track for a late 2019 in-service date.

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