A pipeline company and community clash over a proposed pipeline, - WVVA TV Bluefield Beckley WV News, Weather and Sports

A pipeline company and community clash over a proposed pipeline, and company lawsuit

UNION, WV (WVVA) Business owners and residents rallied before the Mountain Valley Pipeline open house, to voice their concern over a proposed 300 mile long pipe that would be used to transport natural gas.

One business man and bird breeder says, "they will destroy my breeding operation and the people that buy bees from me, and they will destroy our organic farm."

Rachel Johnson, a Monroe County resident, says, "I have very broad concerns about this pipeline, about all pipelines,  and what we are doing in general to destroy our planet."

Mountain Valley filed a lawsuit in US District Court, a little over a week ago, to have access and survey more than one hundred Monroe County residents land. Those residents call the lawsuit bullying.

Landowner, Cookie Cole, says, "They actually have sent me several letters in the mail and called me several times wanting to come and survey on my property and I did send them registered letters that they were not allowed on my property or I would file paperwork against them."

After the rally, the group made its way to the open house.

Mountain Valley Pipeline representative, Nathaniel Manchin, helped guide residents to informational desks set up throughout the open house. He says, "our land representatives are here, The Federal Energy Regulation Commission is also here, they can get a lot of good information from those folks."

Many, upset with the company, showed their frustration by flipping over the maps provided by the pipeline company.

When pipeline representatives were asked about the lawsuit and reported helicopters flying over landowners property, they said having access to survey is important to chart the best and safest route for the pipeline.

Manchin says, "it allows you to avoid sensitive areas and generally chart the best route possible with the least amount of impact."

Elise Keaton who helped coordinate the rally, says those who were named defendants in the pipelines lawsuit would be served this week.

Mountain Valley Pipeline says before they can do anything with the pipelines they will need approval from the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission.

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