Buffett's Berkshire to buy Dominion Energy gas assets for US$4b

Daniel Fowler
July 7, 2020

The project would have started at a fracked gas operation in West Virginia and routed through Virginia before traversing 160 miles in eastern North Carolina, including many communities of color, tribal lands and low-income neighborhoods. We express honest appreciation for the tireless efforts and important contributions made by all who were involved in this essential project.

The stoppage of the ACP project drew statements of disappointment from both of West Virginia's USA senators, Democrat Joe Manchin and Republican Shelley Moore Capito. This announcement reflects the increasing legal uncertainty that overhangs large-scale energy and industrial infrastructure development in the United States.

After originally being announced in 2014 as an effort to address the lack of energy supply and delivery diversification for different parties throughout the region, the Associated Press reported the project would be delayed until 2021 and receive a cost hike of $3 billion in February of 2019.

Catch up fast: Despite a favorable Supreme Court ruling last month, the project faced ongoing legal and permitting battles.

"We regret that we will be unable to complete the Atlantic Coast Pipeline", Dominion CEO Tom Farrell and Duke CEO Lynn Good said in a joint statement.

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Reaction poured in from the project's opponents, who lauded the decision to cancel it.

Specifically, the utilities said the decision of the US District Court for the District of Montana to overturn a long-standing federal permit authority for waterbody and wetland crossings, followed by a Ninth Circuit ruling on May 28 indicating an appeal is not likely to be successful, "are new and serious challenges". The concept of one district court judge paralyzing the construction of pipelines across our country is very disconcerting. "We should and must not quit fights like these".

That announcement comes just weeks after the developers were handed a major victory by the U.S. Supreme Court. The coalition argues, without a stay to block its enforcement, the order will immediately disrupt the economy at an already precarious time as the projects - and the energy resources they provide - are critical to each state. Both lawmakers expressed concerns over the loss of high-paying pipeline construction jobs. The jobs in question paid laborers between $25 to $40 per hour plus per diem.

"Lumbee leaders have scored a tremendous victory in stopping this fossil fuel pipeline", tweeted the Indigenous Environmental Network, referring to the North Carolina tribe that helped lead opposition to the pipeline.

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