Conservation group files intent to sue to halt construction of Surry-Skiffes Creel transmission line

Jack Jacobs, jojacobs@vagazette.com

The National Parks Conservation Association intends to sue the Army Corps of Engineers and National Marine Fisheries Service, saying the agencies’ review of the Dominion Energy’s Surry-Skiffes Creek transmission line project failed to adequately consider the project’s effects on local wildlife.

The National Parks Conservation Association, a national environmental and conservation group, sent its 60-day notice of intent to sue Monday, according to a news release from the group.

The conservation group’s notice alleges the agencies’ review did not acknowledge that Shortnose Sturgeon, an endangered species, are in the James River and failed to thoroughly evaluate the effects of the project on juvenile Atlantic Sturgeon, the release states.

The notice formally requests the corps place a halt on Dominion’s project until the effects of the project on the federally protected species can be further studied. The notice says the incomplete reviews violate the Endangered Species Act.

“Endangered juvenile Atlantic Sturgeon and their critical habitat have been found at the very site where the transmission tower foundations are currently being constructed. Until proper review is completed, construction on the project must stop to prevent irreparable harm to these endangered fish populations and the historic setting of this treasured place,” said Theresa Pierno, president and CEO of the National Parks Conservation Association, in the release.

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