Group Takes Emergency Legal Action to Prevent Irreparable Damage at Historic Sites
BACKGROUND: In an urgent move to prevent construction of a massive energy project, resulting in what could be irreparable damage to one of our country’s most historic places, National Parks Conservation Association (NPCA) today filed an emergency request for a preliminary injunction. The legal move calls for the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia to temporarily halt construction of Dominion Energy’s planned transmission line near historic Jamestown and that a Court hearing be set as soon as possible. NPCA is calling for the Court to resolve its preliminary injunction request before construction commences because NPCA has alleged that the Army Corps failed to follow federal law under the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) and the Clean Water Act—violations that must be cured before the Corps can make a lawful determination as to whether, and under what conditions, this project may be constructed.
The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers recently granted the necessary permit to allow Dominion Energy to proceed with a highly controversial plan to build 17 obstructive transmission towers, some as tall as 295 feet, across the James River at historic Jamestown.
In response, NPCA filed a lawsuit calling out the Army Corps’ failure to conduct a thorough review of reasonable alternatives that would fulfill the region’s energy needs while protecting historic Jamestown. The Army Corps also failed to conduct a transparent public process and comment period under NEPA. The project would degrade historic Jamestown and nearby national parks and related sites including Colonial National Historical Park, Colonial Parkway and the Captain John Smith Chesapeake National Historic Trail, and harm federally protected species including the Atlantic sturgeon.
NPCA is represented in this case by the public interest environmental law firm Meyer Glitzenstein & Eubanks LLP. More information about the years-long campaign to protect historic Jamestown is available here.
Statement by Theresa Pierno, President and CEO for National Parks Conservation Association
“If Dominion proceeds with construction, the damage they cause to this historic area could be permanent. Are we willing to take that risk? People have experienced this historic setting for centuries. Surely Dominion can wait to get the court’s expeditious ruling on this matter before taking actions we could all deeply regret. We will continue to fight to ensure Dominion Energy does not deface one of America’s most historic areas.”
About National Parks Conservation Association Since 1919, the nonpartisan National Parks Conservation Association has been the leading voice in safeguarding our national parks. NPCA and its more than 1.3 million members and supporters work together to protect and preserve our nation’s natural, historic, and cultural heritage for future generations. For more information, visit www.npca.org.
About Meyer Glitzenstein & Eubanks LLP Since 1993, Meyer Glitzenstein & Eubanks LLP has represented national, regional, and grassroots conservation organizations in federal litigation on issues of national importance. Please direct any legal inquiries about this lawsuit to Meyer Glitzenstein & Eubanks LLP.
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