RICHMOND, Va. (WJHL) – Virginia Governor Ralph Northam has signed an executive order declaring a state of emergency in the Commonwealth of Virginia after the ransomware attack on the Colonial Pipeline system.
According to a release from the governor’s office, Executive Order 78 was signed Tuesday in response to the May 7 attack.
The release describes the pipeline as “the primary fuel source for many Virginia retailers.”
“While the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has issued a temporary fuel transportation waiver to increase the supply of gasoline, the Governor’s emergency declaration allows state agencies to issue their own waivers as required by the state,” the release reads.
Northam’s executive order also allows more flexibility and funding for governments at the state and local level to make sure an adequate fuel supply is available.
“This emergency declaration will help the Commonwealth prepare for any potential supply shortages and ensure Virginia motorists have access to fuel as we respond to this evolving situation,” said Governor Northam.
The EPA issued an emergency fuel waiver Tuesday to assist in preventing fuel shortages in the commonwealth and other impacted states. That waiver will remain in effect through May 18 and can be seen by clicking here.