VA Department of Environmental Quality Issues Warning Letter to C4GT, Threatens Permit Revocation
After months of scrutiny from national, regional, and local activists representing the SAVE Coalition, state agency takes action on delinquent fossil fuel project
Richmond, VA — Last week, the Virginia Department of Environmental Quality issued a warning letter to C4GT LLC, threatening permit revocation. The letter comes after months of scrutiny from environmental organizations, activists and impacted residents, representing the Stop the Abuse of Virginian Energy (SAVE) coalition. Senator McClellan also stepped in, requesting that Attorney General Herring and Virginia Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) Director David Paylor investigate C4GT’s claims of “continuous construction.” The response from DEQ comes as a direct result of the increasing pressure placed on the dangerous and dirty fossil fuel project.
In the warning letter, the DEQ outlined how C4GT was in noncompliance due to their failure of “continuous construction,” regarding permit no. 52588. The letter documents how the company has failed to submit monthly reports for February as well as April, which initiated a formal corrective action period that was resolved in early May with a status report confirming no construction has taken place since December 2020. In the letter, DEQ asks C4GT LLC to respond within 30 days “detailing action you have taken or will be taking to ensure compliance with state law and regulations,” which include fulfilling “continuous construction,” requirements and monthly reports. C4GT responded confirming no further action has been taken since December.
Activists laud the letter as a step in the right direction, and credit the move to the increased attention placed on the plant by Senator McClellan and groups representing the SAVE Coalition.
In response, Cynthia Robinson, an impacted resident and member of Concerned Citizens of Charles City County, expressed concerns about how C4GT's permits were being handled, stating:
“As a citizen of Charles City County - any citizen - I deserve transparency from elected people and people that work for the state. The way I see it, I pay your salary, you work for me, like an employer. I just want to know what’s going on here! It seems so undercover. When people don’t share information - especially when asked directly - it looks like they are lying to people. What am I supposed to think? If I was trying to open a business and acted like C4GT, I think I would not be able to get away with the things they are doing.
We have been told “this is the best thing to happen to the county” and “there’s nothing to worry about.” So, if that is true, why can’t they just tell the truth? When the Dollar General came to the county, everybody knew everything about it- that’s all we talked about. If you can give all the information about the Dollar General, why can’t you tell us what’s going on with this gas plant - which will have a bigger effect on all our lives? There are still people in Charles City County that don’t know anything about these gas plants.”