State regulators are fining the operators of the natural gas Rover Pipeline more than $430,000 for water pollution violations.
The state Department of Environmental Protection announced Tuesday that Rover Pipeline LLC, which is owned by Energy Transfer Partners, violated its permit and state laws on multiple occasions.
The 713-mile pipeline is 99 percent completed, according to the company. Ultimately, the pipeline will be used to transport more than three billion cubic feet of natural gas daily from processing plants in West Virginia, Ohio and Pennsylvania.
DEP says inspections by the agency over the course of a year beginning in April 2017 revealed pipeline operators failed to maintain erosion controls, improperly installed silt fences and other perimeter controls. The company also abandoned trash and debris during construction of the pipeline.
In total, the company received 18 violation notices and two cease-and-desist orders from DEP, according to the consent decree made public this week.
Angie Rosser, executive director of West Virginia Rivers Coalition, said many of the things the Rover Pipeline was cited for were repeated violations.
"It’s just like the message wasn’t getting across," she asid. "I’m glad to see the DEP out there frequently and scrutinizing this closely, but it’s frustrating and insulting, I think, that this company just kept causing problems.”
As a result of the violations, many streams were flooded with dirt and debris. According to the consent decree, the company has agreed to immediately take measures to comply. The public comment period on the agreement is open until July 13.