Rover Pipeline Construction Halted in W. Virginia

July 25, 2017

West Virginia's Department of Environmental Protection issued a stop activity order to Energy Transfer Partners regarding the company's already delayed $4.2 billion Rover Pipeline. The order was made public on Monday in a U.S. Federal Energy Regulatory Commission filing that noted sediment deposits and improper erosion controls, along with other violations.

The 713-mile Rover pipeline is designed to transport 3.25 billion cubic feet of natural gas per day, running from Canada through Michigan, Ohio, and West Virginia.

The Rover Pipeline and ETP currently face sanctions and fines for drilling violations in Ohio. On May 10, FERC banned ETP from starting new horizontal directional drilling under waterways and roads following the release of about 2 million gallons of drilling fluid into Tuscarawas River wetlands in Ohio. That fluid contained traces of diesel, which is not allowed under the permit. FERC's drilling ban will remain until ETP explains how the diesel got into the fluid.

ETP is building a history of environmental violations.

Earlier this month, the Ohio Environmental Protection Agency asked the state attorney general to pursue civil penalties against ETP for the Tuscarawas spill and other violations.

Last week, ETP was fined by Pennsylvania regulators for dumping drilling fluid into the state's waters while drilling on the Sunoco Mariner East 2 natural gas pipeline.

According to a September 2016 report by Reuters, Energy Transfer Partners has spilled environmental contaminated fluids more often than any of its competitors, with more than 200 leaks since 2010.