Skip to main content

Sign up for our newsletter.

Quality journalism. Progressive values. Direct to your inbox.

Climate activist groups protest in front of the U.S. Supreme Court on February 24, 2020 in Washington, D.C. (Photo: Mark Wilson/Getty Images)

'The Future Does Not Belong to You,' Climate Campaigners Say to Big Oil After Cancellation of 600-Mile Atlantic Coast Pipeline

"Duke and Dominion did not decide to cancel the Atlantic Coast Pipeline—the people and frontline organizations that led this fight for years forced them into walking away."

Jake Johnson

Following years of widespread grassroots opposition led by vulnerable local communities and national environmental organizations, two U.S. energy behemoths on Sunday abruptly cancelled the planned Atlantic Coast Pipeline, a sprawling project that would have transported dirty fracked gas along a 600-mile route through West Virginia, Virginia, and North Carolina.

"Today is a historic victory for clean water, the climate, public health, and our communities," said Sierra Club executive director Michael Brune. "Duke and Dominion did not decide to cancel the Atlantic Coast Pipeline—the people and frontline organizations that led this fight for years forced them into walking away. Today's victory reinforces that united communities are more powerful than the polluting corporations that put profits over our health and future."

Duke and Dominion's statement announcing their decision to pull the plug—citing "ongoing delays and increasing cost uncertainty"—came even after the Supreme Court delivered the companies a major victory last month by removing a regulatory hurdle in the way of the $8 billion pipeline, which would have cut through two national forests, tunneled under the Appalachian Trail, and crossed Indigenous lands.

"Lumbee leaders have scored a tremendous victory in stopping this fossil fuel pipeline," tweeted the Indigenous Environmental Network, referring to the North Carolina tribe that helped lead opposition to the pipeline.

Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) chief Dan Brouillette, a former corporate lobbyist, issued a statement late Sunday blaming what he called the "well-funded, obstructionist environmental lobby" for killing the fossil fuel project as the Trump administration works to accelerate pipeline approvals and construction under the cover of the Covid-19 pandemic.

"In reality," said Gillian Giannetti of the Natural Resources Defense Council in response to Brouillette, "many of those who led the #NoACP movement were ordinary landowners of all political stripes who were tired of being ignored by Dominion."

In a statement, Greenpeace USA climate director Janet Redman noted that "people living along the proposed path of the Atlantic Coast Pipeline have said from the beginning that it would be a disaster, and now Dominion and Duke have had to admit their opponents were right."

"Luckily, today's news is only a disaster for those fossil fuel executives hoping to squeeze their last millions out of catastrophic climate change, not for people invested in a livable future," said Redman. "Duke and Dominion had hoped to carve up beautiful mountains, ignore catastrophic climate change, and delay a just transition to renewable energy to build this pipeline."

"Thanks to the courageous activists who stood up to them, they have failed," Redman added. "Their epic failure should be a warning to other fossil fuel companies hoping to double down on dirty pipelines—the future does not belong to you."


Our work is licensed under Creative Commons (CC BY-NC-ND 3.0). Feel free to republish and share widely.

This is the world we live in. This is the world we cover.

Because of people like you, another world is possible. There are many battles to be won, but we will battle them together—all of us. Common Dreams is not your normal news site. We don't survive on clicks. We don't want advertising dollars. We want the world to be a better place. But we can't do it alone. It doesn't work that way. We need you. If you can help today—because every gift of every size matters—please do. Without Your Support We Simply Don't Exist.

Biden-Backed Aukus Deal Could Spell 'Disaster' for Climate Cooperation With China

One U.K. lawmaker said reaching a "positive outcome" at the upcoming talks in Glasgow "just got a whole lot harder."

Jon Queally ·



Exclusive: Jared Kushner's Family Firm Set to Unleash Eviction Wave Amid Pandemic

"Kushner is the poster child for ultra-rich landlords clamoring to boost their bottom line by kicking families to the curb, even if it comes at the expense of public health."

Jake Johnson ·


Patient Group Targets Pair of Democrats for 'Selling Us Out to Drug Companies'

"It makes me so angry that members of Congress are choosing Big Pharma over patients. It's unforgivable."

Jake Johnson ·


Judge Blocks Biden From Continuing 'Inhumane' Trump Policy to Deport Families

"This is not the end of the battle against this practice," said one rights group, "but it is a major step to ensure that the U.S. welcomes these asylum-seeking families—as we should."

Jessica Corbett ·

Support our work.

We are independent, non-profit, advertising-free and 100% reader supported.

Subscribe to our newsletter.

Quality journalism. Progressive values.
Direct to your inbox.

Subscribe to our Newsletter.


Common Dreams, Inc. Founded 1997. Registered 501(c3) Non-Profit | Privacy Policy
Common Dreams Logo