Proposed pipeline project brings great concern from landowners
OTTUMWA, Iowa (KYOU) - Dozens of people skipping out on their work day and lunch hour to learn more about the Heartland Greenway pipeline project on Friday afternoon. The proposed pipeline that would span 1,300 miles, with 900 miles impacting Iowa.
10 miles in Wapello County is expected to go directly through Wapello County. The pipeline would capture carbon dioxide, be turned into liquid, and then stored in the ground. This would be a big plus for ethanol plants to help lower their carbon footprint.
Due to the size of the project and the amount of people impacted, the Iowa Utilities Board requires the company to host public hearings in each county that would be affected, which would be 37 in Iowa alone. The developer, Navigator CO₂ Ventures, heard complaints about pipelines and the rising concerns over the technology and the impact the pipeline would have on farmers and other landowners.
Elizabeth Burns-Thompson, Vice-President of Government and Public Affairs for Navigator CO₂ Ventures, ensures the company will restore the land that it works on. “Should you as a landowner see a loss beyond that 240% throughout the life of the project we would welcome those conversations on a one-on-one basis if we reach that point,” she said during the meeting.
But due to past pipelines, including Dakota Access, those who attended Friday’s meeting say they’ve been burned in the past. One resident stood during the open question forum saying: “I am sad that this is happening again.”
Environmentalist Claire Carlson isn’t sold either, seeing damages in the past still not resolved. She said after Friday’s meeting, “If they don’t follow through on their promise and actually commit to restoring the land it’s going to be destroyed for everyone for the rest of time. Even with Dakota Access, land has been damaged and they haven’t fixed it. There’s nothing that grows there! If you get online and see pictures of Dakota Access, you’ll see the scar. There is nothing that grows there.”
Other residents say they would rather just work with the company than be against them since many believe the pipeline is happening regardless of the pushback.
A final meeting will be held virtually for those who could not attend in person on January 19th at 5:30 p.m. To file, you must file electronically following this link. The Iowa’s Utilities Board presentation during the meeting can be found here.
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