Conservation West Virginia Supports Rep. David McKinley in the May 10 Republican Primary

Because of population loss, West Virginia’s three Congressional districts have been consolidated into two. The new 2nd District covers roughly the northern half of the state and pits two incumbent Republican Congressmen against one another in the primary on May 10.  David McKinley, from Wheeling, is the sitting Congressman from the old 1st District. Alex […]

West Virginia’s Supreme Court Case Could Undermine Climate Policy

As if we need more to worry about, an anticipated United States Supreme Court ruling in West Virginia vs. the Environmental Protection Agency may permanently alter the ability of that agency to regulate climate change. This case on which oral arguments were heard on February 28, 2022, had its genesis in the Clean Power Plan […]

2022 Legislative Recap: One Step Forward and Two Steps Back

The West Virginia Legislature ended its 2022 regular session at midnight March 12, 2022. Altogether, the Legislature passed 293 bills. Sixty-two bills introduced were energy or environment related. Only 8 of them passed. Some of the unsuccessful bills we opposed.  Many more we supported. Energy Policy  There was a lot of long-range thinking about the […]

Mountain Valley Pipeline Dealt Two Blows By U.S. Court of Appeals

In an effort to capitalize on the natural gas contained in the Utica and Marcellus shale formations in West Virginia, Equitrans Midstream Corp. is constructing the Mountain Valley Pipeline running through eleven West Virginia counties and Southeastern Virginia.  Equitrans and the pipeline’s other owners hope to provide up to 2 billion cubic feet of gas […]

Industry Wins Again at the Legislature: Water Quality Standards Weakened

Changes sought by industry to the DEP rules regarding water quality standards for human consumption  were passed by the Legislature on February 10.  The DEP incorporated the changes into the proposed rules as “a compromise” between the views of industry and environmental groups, but the measure was opposed strongly by West Virginia Rivers, the chief […]

WV House Passes Program to Regulate Geothermal Energy

In response to a research project being conducted at West Virginia University, the House of Delegates passed HB 4098 on February 10, 2022.  This bill sets up a regulatory structure for geothermal energy in the state.  Geothermal energy is the Earth’s heat reached by drilling wells several miles deep.  WVU has acquired a $7.25 million […]

WV Repeals Restrictions on Nuclear Power

In a fast-tracked process resulting in the passage of SB 4 by the West Virginia Legislature, the state no longer has any statutory guidance on how to evaluate an application to build a nuclear power plant. The repeal bill was signed by the Governor on February 8, 2022. The repealed statute — WV Code 16-27A-2 […]

WV House Passes Bill Easing Regulation of Aboveground Storage Tanks Near Drinking Water Intakes

In 2014, a leak from an aboveground storage tank on the Elk River just above the drinking water intake for Charleston and much of Kanawha County polluted drinking water for 300,000 consumers. As a result the West Virginia Legislature passed the Aboveground Storage Tank Act imposing strict safety and inspection rules on such tanks.  Almost […]

Nuclear Power for West Virginia?

Conservation West Virginia is not opposed to nuclear power, which might solve a lot of our climate problems. We hope it will continue to be explored. On January 21, 2022, the West Virginia House Energy Committee passed out a bill for consideration by the full House (HB 2882) that would repeal the current law governing […]

Can the Environment Survive the West Virginia Legislature? Week 1.

Think of the period between January 12 and March 12 as hunting season.  The prey?  West Virginia’s precious environment.  The hunters?  All those willing to undervalue and sacrifice the environment for a few extra dollars here or there.  There are a lot of hunters in West Virginia, folks, and they were out in Charleston during […]