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Rover Pipeline, Ohio butt heads over soil displacement

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Rover Pipeline, Ohio butt heads over soil displacement

An Energy Transfer Partners LP company said it is cooperating with the Ohio Environmental Protection Agency over construction issues in the final work on the 3.25-Bcf/d Rover natural gas pipeline project, contrary to the agency's claims.

The state agency said in Feb. 22 correspondence that Rover Pipeline LLC continues to fail to coordinate with the state on environmental issues. The agency sought additional information on repairs at 28 work areas where minor soil displacements occurred due to construction activities. Such "slips" could "pose a serious threat to environmental resources if corrective measures are not taken," the agency said.

In a Feb. 23 letter to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, Rover said it has responded to both FERC and the state agency on all their inquiries. "Ohio EPA's letter is the latest in a string of baseless claims regarding Rover that attempt to denigrate Rover to advance its own litigation position," Rover Senior Vice President of Engineering Chris Sonneborn said in the letter.

Rover challenged the actions of the Ohio Environmental Protection Agency. The company said the state agency does not have jurisdiction to demand the extra information it seeks.

The Ohio agency asked the state attorney general to pursue a suit against Energy Transfer. The agency has pursued the pipeline company since drilling along the project route resulted in inadvertent returns of drilling fluids, including an almost 2-million-gallon spill at a site on the Tuscarawas River in April 2017.

FERC has authorized Rover to put in service portions of the project, including the first phase and two mainline compressor stations. The 511-mile project will provide an outlet for Marcellus an Utica shale gas production. (FERC docket CP15-93)