Media Statement

Supreme Court Renders Decision in Appalachian Trail Case

June 15, 2020

July 5, 2020 Update: Dominion Energy and Duke Energy announced they have canceled the Atlantic Coast Pipeline project.


Media Statement
Appalachian Trail Conservancy

In Response to the Supreme Court’s Decision in the Case of United States Forest Service v. Cowpasture River Preservation Association

Statement from Sandra Marra, President & CEO of the Appalachian Trail Conservancy

“Earlier today, the Supreme Court ruled in the case of United States Forest Service v. Cowpasture River Preservation Association, overturning the ruling made by the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals in 2019. While the details of the case are under review by Appalachian Trail Conservancy (ATC) staff, this first-ever decision on the National Trails System Act is understood to keep in place the Cooperative Management System that tens of thousands of Appalachian Trail (A.T.) volunteers, professionals and agency partners have collaborated under for decades.

What will not change, no matter how this decision impacts pipeline permitting rights, is the ATC’s dedication to protecting, managing and advocating for the A.T. in coordination with our federal, state and regional partners. It is through this Cooperative Management System that we ensure the Trail has the resources and expertise required to protect the A.T. forever and for all to enjoy.”

About the Appalachian Trail Conservancy
The ATC was founded in 1925 by volunteers and federal officials working to build a continuous footpath along the Appalachian Mountains. A unit of the National Park System, the A.T. ranges from Maine to Georgia and is 2,193 miles in length. It is the longest hiking-only footpath in the world. The mission of the ATC is to protect, manage, and advocate for the Appalachian National Scenic Trail. For more information, please visit

Media Contact: Jordan Bowman
Appalachian Trail Conservancy
Tel: 304.885.0794