ROANOKE, Va. (AP) — The federal government has approved preliminary construction for parts of the Mountain Valley Pipeline in West Virginia. The 300-mile natural gas pipeline would also run through parts of southwestern Virginia if it’s fully approved.
The Roanoke Times reported Monday that the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission’s approval was limited to work on access roads and construction yards in West Virginia. But it marked the first time the line met all requirements for preliminary construction anywhere along its proposed route.
FERC has yet to take a similar action for the Virginia section. It would pass through the Roanoke and New River valleys.
The preliminary greenlight was a step backward for pipeline opponents in Virginia. Legal challenges are pending. And at least two state agencies have yet to sign off on it.