RICHMOND, Va. (AP) — A U.S. appeals court has tossed a key federal permit for the Atlantic Coast Pipeline that deals with impacts on threatened or endangered species.
A panel of the Richmond-based 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals on Friday vacated the permit issued by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.
The court wrote that the agency’s decisions had been fast-tracked and the agency “appears to have lost sight” of its mandate. Four species that would be affected by the 600-mile (965-kilometer) natural gas pipeline were at issue in the appeal.
A Fish and Wildlife spokeswoman couldn’t immediately be reached for comment.
The decision is the latest in a series of legal setbacks for the pipeline, construction of which has been on hold since December.
Lead developer Dominion Energy did not immediately respond to a request for comment.