Faith Leaders Gather in Roanoke to Oppose Pipeline Projects

Sep 13, 2017

Just a few blocks down from the Department of Environmental Quality office in Roanoke, faith leaders from a number of belief systems and denominations congregated to pray for hurricane victims and show opposition to two proposed natural gas pipelines in Virginia.
Credit Nick Gilmore / RADIO IQ

The Atlantic Coast and Mountain Valley Pipeline projects continue to draw harsh criticism from environmentalists and those who question potential impacts on water quality. A number of protestors from the faith community voiced their concerns in Roanoke Wednesday.

Faith leaders from different belief systems and denominations gathered a few blocks down from the Roanoke Department of Environmental Quality building to pray for and honor those impacted by Hurricanes Harvey and Irma.

The leaders were also there to stand firm against the two proposed pipeline projects.

Read More: Pipeline Protest & Vigils Around Virginia 

Mike Tidwell, who is the director of the Chesapeake Climate Action Network, took the opportunity to admonish Governor Terry McAuliffe.

“Because he wants to build a massive pipeline for fracked gas through southwest Virginia and near Roanoke that we think is ethically wrong and especially in the wake of these hurricanes and the destruction and loss of life that scientists say is increasingly connected to climate change. We need the governor to stop supporting new fossil fuel projects that make climate change worse.”

Brad Dulaney is the pastor of Redwood United Methodist Church in Rocky Mount. He says his heart goes out to the victims of Harvey and Irma, but that the hurricanes should spark discussions about the impact of a warming planet.

“That’s kind of ground zero for global climate change, which obviously is a result of our continued carbon emissions that goes unabated. And, I just feel like both the ACP and the MVP are steps backwards for the Commonwealth of Virginia and the world.”

Protesters plan to meet again Thursday to deliver a letter to the DEQ detailing their concerns of the proposed pipelines.