Mountain Valley Pipeline, LLC (Mountain Valley), today, provided a schedule and timing update in preparation for completion of its 303-mile natural gas transmission line. Total project work is approximately 92% complete and full in-service is now expected in early 2021.
"First and foremost, we are confident in the ultimate completion of this important infrastructure project," said Diana Charletta, president and chief operating officer, EQM Midstream Partners, LP, operator of MVP.
"We appreciate the oversight of the various state and federal agencies that have helped guide our construction activities, and despite the unprecedented regulatory and development challenges, we have completed 92% of total project work. While the additional legal and regulatory reviews have caused schedule delays and cost adjustments, we look forward to MVP's safe, successful start-up and to serving the growing demand for domestic natural gas in the mid-Atlantic and Southeast regions of the United States."
For the last several months, Mountain Valley's primary focus has been continued environmental stabilization and restoration work, and maintenance of existing erosion and sediment controls along the right-of-way. Forward construction is anticipated to resume when MVP receives its Biological Opinion and the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission lifts the project's Stop Work Order.
MVP's 2021 in-service date reflects changes to the previously planned construction schedule, which includes the continued timing uncertainty of permits for crossing the Jefferson National Forest and Appalachian Trail, roughly 3.7 miles; and waterbodies, which total approximately 10 miles of pipe.
In connection with the adjusted in-service date, total project costs for MVP may potentially increase roughly 5% above the project's $5.4 billion estimate, primarily due to the need to adapt to complex judicial decisions and regulatory changes - creating carrying costs and requiring supplemental crews to safely maintain the entire 303-mile route during the halt of construction and through the upcoming winter months.
MVP's current construction statistics: the three compressor stations are 100% complete; the three original certificated interconnects are 100% complete and a fourth has been approved for construction in 2020; approximately 80% of the pipeline work is complete, which includes 264 miles of pipe welded and in-place; and approximately 50% of the right-of-way has been fully restored.
Since the onset of the project, Mountain Valley has retained five key stakeholder priorities: design a route with the least overall impact to landowners and communities; minimize impacts to sensitive species and preserve cultural, historical, and environmental resources; construct the pipeline in the safest manner possible; maintain high levels of environmental protection at all times; and ensure the safety of MVP's landowners, communities, inspectors, employees, and contractors.