After months of deliberation, the North Carolina Department of Environmental Quality has granted an important permit for the construction of the Atlantic Coast Pipeline. The 401 water quality permit will allow developers Dominion Energy and Duke Energy to construct the pipeline along the I-95 corridor as long as they adhere to certain water quality standards. More permits are required for construction to begin, but opponents were hoping the state would withhold the water permit, which could have stopped construction of the pipeline even with its federal approval.
Many officials in the state applauded Gov. Roy Cooper’s administration for the deal, which includes a $57.8 million environmental mitigation fund. Guest host Adam Hochberg talks with Elizabeth Ouzts, a reporter for the Southeast Energy News, about the history and future of the pipeline. He also talks to Ryan Emanuel, professor of forestry and environmental resources at North Carolina State University and member of the Lumbee Tribe, about how the pipeline could affect the environment and disproportionately impact low-income and minority communities.