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Martinsville Bulletin, Inc.
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Gas line may run through Henry County

Friday, August 15, 2014

By BEN R. WILLIAMS - Bulletin Staff Writer

A proposed natural gas pipeline possibly could pass through Henry County, and some county residents have been contacted about surveying on their land, according to a representative of EQT Corp.

Natalie Cox, corporate director of communications at EQT, said Henry County was added Thursday to the list of counties the pipeline could pass through.

“The pipeline route is not yet finalized, however,” Cox said, adding that the project is in its earliest stages.

According to a release on EQT’s website, the company, which is based in Pittsburgh, and NextEra Energy Inc., which is based in Juno Beach, Fla., on June 12 announced a proposed 330-mile natural gas transmission line project that would extend from Wetzel County, W.Va., through Southwest Virginia to an expected delivery point in Pittsylvania County.

The proposed pipeline, referred to as “Mountain Valley Pipeline,” is expected to have a transmission capacity of at least 2 billion cubic feet of natural gas per day.

Right now, Cox said, the project is in its earliest stage. EQT has reached out to some county residents to ask if EQT representatives could come onto their property in the future to do surveying work.

“It’s not until the surveying work is complete that the final pipeline route is determined,” she said. “This is really the most important aspect ... of the planning process so that we can get it absolutely correct.”

Before any construction could begin, Cox said, the pipeline first would have to be approved by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC).

Cox stressed that the project still is in its earliest stages, and that she did not yet know what specific areas of Henry County had been contacted about surveying work.

EQT has not yet begun “full-blown community outreach” within Henry County, though that is an upcoming step, she said.

“If the pipeline is approved and goes through,” Cox said, “it wouldn’t be until sometime in 2018 that this would even be in service.”

Henry County Administrator Tim Hall said he had not yet been contacted by EQT, though he looks forward to learning more about the project.

“We’d certainly like to hear from the company or sit down with the company to get a general idea of what the plan and the timeline may look like,” Hall said.

 

 
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