(Reuters) – Equitrans Midstream Corp said on Monday it will evaluate the cost and timing of the completion of the Mountain Valley natural gas pipeline based on ongoing litigation and upcoming federal approvals.

FILE PHOTO: An aerial view of the under-construction Mountain Valley Pipeline near Blacksburg, Virginia, U.S. September 30, 2019. REUTERS/Charles Mostoller

The U.S. Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) gave Mountain Valley permission late Friday to resume some construction on its $5.4 billion-$5.7 billion pipeline, which runs from Virginia to West Virginia.

“As the litigation process progresses and as we receive additional information from FERC regarding potentially releasing the remainder of the route for construction, (Mountain Valley) will continue to evaluate its current construction plans, budget, and schedule,” Equitrans said.

Mountain Valley is one of several U.S. oil and gas pipelines delayed by regulatory and legal fights with environmental and local groups that found problems with federal permits issued by the Trump administration.

FERC suspended work on Mountain Valley a year ago due to litigation over the project’s Biological Opinion from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS), which allows construction in areas inhabited by endangered and threatened species.

The FWS issued a new Biological Opinion in early September. Environmental and other groups continue to challenge the latest FWS approval and other federal permits in court.

Analysts at Height Capital Markets said they expect the project to enter service in mid 2021 but noted timing could slip to the third quarter of 2021 if legal challenges prevent some stream crossings.

“We acknowledge the legal challenge that is currently before Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals and have agreed to temporarily delay stream and waterbody activities out of respect for that process,” Equitrans said.

Equitrans has said it expects the pipeline, which is about 92% complete, to enter service in early

Solar Panels Generate Electricity Savings with Renewable Power

ZGlobal Power Engineering and Energy Solutions (ZG) is pleased to announce the completion of the first phase of a solar installation at Imperial Valley Food Bank that will generate 585 kilowatt-hours (KWh) from rooftop photovoltaic panels. Once the second phase of the (200 KWh) project is completed in 2021, the Food Bank will save more than $500,000 in energy costs.

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Imperial Valley Food Bank’s Green Building (Photo: Business Wire)

The cost savings come at a critical time for the Food Bank as it is serving more clients than ever before with layoffs and business closures continuing in Imperial Valley due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The rooftop solar plant installed on the Imperial Valley Food Bank’s new building was completed Sept. 1, 2020 and will help address the growing needs of the community. According to the California Employment Development Department, Imperial County’s 26.8% unemployment rate ranks as one of the highest unemployment regions in California, as of July 1, 2020[1].

To help fund the new building, ZG pledged more than $275,000 over a five-year period as part of the Food Bank’s Capital Campaign in addition to installing the rooftop solar project at cost. Additionally, and at cost, ZG is embarking on an innovative “microgrid” project at the facility that will create additional zero-carbon electricity, while allowing the Food Bank to operate off-the-grid during outages.

With an office in the region, ZG has contributed to the local economy for 15 years, providing engineering services to more than 1,250 megawatts of clean energy projects, including 20 megawatt-hours of energy storage as well as key transmission projects to further green the grid and enhance reliability.

“Our commitment to Imperial County speaks for itself,” said ZG