Environmental groups to protest Virginia gov.'s energy policies

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RICHMOND, Va. (AP) — Several environmental groups are calling on Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe to do a better job protecting the environment and promote renewable energy sources.

The groups released an open letter Wednesday and announced a protest at the Executive Mansion on July 23.

McAuliffe, a Democrat, ran in 2013 with strong support from the environmental community.

But several environmentalists have said the governor has grown too cozy with the state's largest electric utility, Dominion Virginia Power, whose parent company wants to build a large natural gas pipeline that would traverse much of the state.

The open letter calls on McAuliffe to reconsider his support for that pipeline, stop supporting offshore oil drilling and prevent Dominion from releasing treated coal ash water into the state's rivers.

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