Environmental Impact draft issued for Ohio Valley Connector Expansion Project

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On Friday, the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) issued its draft environmental impact statement for the Ohio Valley Connector Expansion Project in Pennsylvania, West Virginia, and Ohio.

The draft statement found that since the project would be in an area already used for energy production and transmission, most adverse environmental impacts would be temporary or short-term during construction and would have minimal effects on existing land use. The draft statement said that with the exception of climate change impacts (not characterized by the statement either way), the project’s impact on the environment would not be significant.

The project would allow Equitrans, LP, to acquire and operate the existing Cygrymus Compressor Station and install two new turbines in Greene County, Pennsylvania. Additionally, Equitrans would install a compressor unit at each of the Corona Compressor Station in Wetzel County, West Virginia, and the Plasma Compressor Station in Monroe County, Ohio. Equitrans would also construct an estimated 5.5 miles of pipeline in Greene County, Pa., and Wetzel County, W.V.

Officials said the project would expand Equitrans’ Ohio Valley Connector assets to deliver approximately 350,000 dekatherms per day of incremental firm natural gas to mid-continent and Gulf Coast markets.

The commission said it came to its determination based on a review of the information provided by Equitrans, as well as from data requests; field investigations; scoping; literature research; alternatives analyses; and contacts with the federal, state, and local agencies, Native American tribes, and other stakeholders.

FERC Commissioners will take the statement into consideration before it makes a final decision on the project. The comment period on the draft environmental impact statement closes on Nov. 21, 2022.