by Jim Kotcon |
Surprise Reversal Indeed: WV PSC ignores the staff, the expert testimony and even common sense!
In a surprise reversal on TrAILCo’s application to build a 500 kV electric transmission line, the Staff of the Public Service Commission (PSC) agreed in April to a “Settlement” which would allow the line to be built, in exchange for TrAILCo agreeing to a new route through the Grafton Area, as well as some financial concessions.
Up until just days before, the Staff had vigorously opposed the line, saying it was not needed and that the chosen route had greater adverse environmental impacts than other alternatives.
This agreement follows an earlier agreement by the Consumer Advocate Division, and was also signed by the West Virginia Energy Users Group, a coalition of large industrial electricity customers who will have to help pay the cost of the line.
These settlements leave the Sierra Club as one of the few remaining opponents of the line. WV Sierra Club activists agree that the settlement was based largely on political considerations, and does not alter the basic arguments of our case against the line.
Bill DePaulo remains actively involved in the TrAILCO case and sends regular updates to the Energy Committee. In June he filed the Post-hearing brief on behalf of the Sierra Club with the PSC.
See our Chapter webpages on the APTrail Campaign for current information on the campaign against TrAILCO and PATH, Expert Testimonies gathered by the Chapter, Chapter comments on the proposed settlement between TrAILCO and the WV Public Service Commission and our current fundraising initiatives: http://westvirginia.sierraclub.org/aptrail_campaign.html