South Boston News & Record
and Mecklenburg Sun
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$5 billion gas pipeline to cut across Southside
SoVaNow.com / September 03, 2014State and energy industry officials on Tuesday announced a joint venture to build a 550-mile natural gas pipeline that will intersect Brunswick County en route from West Virginia to North Carolina and the Tidewater region.
The project, estimated to cost up to $5 billion, will provide a direct route through the Mid-Atlantic for natural gas from shale basins in West Virginia, Pennsylvania and Ohio. Operation is anticipated by 2018, pending regulatory approvals.
The Atlantic Coast pipeline represents a joint venture by four major U.S. energy companies: Dominion, Duke Energy, Piedmont Natural Gas and AGL Resources.
The project was announced Tuesday at a press conference in Richmond with Gov. Terry McAuliffe, Dominion Resources CEO Tom Farrell and Hank Linginfelter, EVP Distribution Operations, AGL Resources and Chairman, Virginia Natural Gas
Officials hailed the pipeline’s economic impact, citing a study by the independent firm Chmura Economics and Analytics that found that construction would:
Produce approximately $1.42 billion in economic activity in the Commonwealth.
Support more than 8,800 new Virginia jobs, including nearly 5,000 directly supported by spending on construction activities.
Generate more than $14.6 million in additional tax revenues for the Commonwealth, including individual income and corporate tax revenues.
Once construction is complete, the pipeline would generate a total of 37.8 million per year in ongoing economic activity, support a total of 188 jobs annually and produce more than $233,000 in additional state tax revenue, according to Chmura.
“This project is a game changer for Virginia’s economy, and the benefits will be both immediate and long-lasting,” said Governor McAuliffe. “In addition to the thousands of jobs and billions in economic activity that the construction of this project will create, the Atlantic Coast pipeline will lower energy costs for Virginia residents and businesses and help reduce carbon emissions in our state and region.
“This project will also help make Virginia the manufacturing hub of the Mid-Atlantic by enabling us to recruit job creating companies that rely on natural gas. I am proud to have been a part of the team helping Dominion and AGL win this competitive project and I look forward to working with them to leverage this enormous asset as we build a new Virginia economy.”
The project also won praise from local and regional economic officials. Jeff Reed, executive director of Virginia’s Growth Alliance, which includes Mecklenburg, said, “Once built, this pipeline holds tremendous economic development potential for our area of southern Virginia. Access to natural gas is a critical tool in attracting business and the Atlantic Coastal Pipeline could help our counties bring much needed jobs to the region.”
Reed applauded member jurisdictions of Virginia’s Growth Alliance for their joint work in supporting this project.
Reed also said that he is thankful for the leadership shown by the Governor and the Secretary of Commerce and Trade and said he looks forward to working with them, Dominion and EVP to ensure access for all VGA localities. He noted that about 110 miles of the proposed gas line is expected to travel through the VGA region including the city of Emporia, Buckingham, Cumberland, Prince Edward, Nottoway, Brunswick and Greensville counties.
Virginia’s Growth Alliance is a regional economic development marketing organization serving the city of Emporia, as well as Amelia, Brunswick, Buckingham, Charlotte, Cumberland, Greensville, Lunenburg, Mecklenburg, Nottoway and Prince Edward counties.
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