USDA Forest Service Issues Emergency Closure Order for the Mountain Valley Pipline Project Right-of-Way and Access Roads

Contact(s): Jessica Rubado (503) 314-0767

(March 10, 2018) Roanoke, Virginia – The USDA Forest Service issued an emergency closure order for the Mountain Valley Pipeline Project right-of-way (ROW) and access roads on National Forest System (NFS) lands in Monroe County, West Virginia and Giles and Montgomery Counties, Virginia. The closure order was enacted to protect public safety due to hazards associated with constructing the Mountain Valley Pipeline. The order prohibits going into or to be upon NFS lands within 200 feet of the centerline of the pipeline right-of-way, excluding the footpath of the Appalachian National Scenic Trail (ANST) and Brush Mountain East Road. The ANST will remain open during pipeline construction.

 The order also prohibits operating, leaving, possessing, or parking a motor vehicle on Mystery Ridge Road for its entire length, and Pocahontas Road from the first Forest Service gate to the intersection with Mystery Ridge Road. 

 The order is in effect for 12 months, unless terminated earlier by the Authorized Officer. 

 The MVP Project is authorized to traverse a total of 303 miles to deliver natural gas produced in the Appalachian Basin to markets in the Northeast, Mid-Atlantic, and Southeastern United States, including 3.6 miles of the Jefferson National Forest. The operational corridor for the pipeline will be 50 feet wide. The Forest Service requires mitigation measures to minimize adverse impacts associated with the MVP project on NFS lands. The Forest Service will have third-party monitors on hand throughout construction to ensure that Mountain Valley Pipeline, LLC has adequately implemented mitigation measures.

 The complete text of the closure order, along with maps of where it applies, can be viewed on the George Washington and Jefferson National Forests’ webpage at the following link: