C02 Pipeline application filed
We’ve known for some time that it was coming. It is now official. Heartland Greenway, the Navigator C02 project slated to run through Moody County, did formally file its request Tuesday of last week to build a carbon capture pipeline in South Dakota.
If approved, the Navigator pipeline, for those unfamiliar yet with the project, would originate at the Valero plant to the north of Moody County and run south, crossing many local landowners properties, aquifers and be within reach of countless communities as it makes its way through four other states to an ultimate sequestration site in Illinois.
And if approved, it would happen whether you agree to it on your property or not.
Dozens of local citizens attended the latest landowners rights meeting this past Thursday night in Flandreau.
“They are in it for the tax credits, the sequestered C02,” Betty Strom told a room of about 100 people this past Thursday night. A lifelong teacher, Strom was there, hoping to educate as many as possible about the concerns if not the dangers that she and others sees ahead — in Moody County or anywhere.
“These tax credits were put in place for environmental impact,” Strom continued. “But they no longer talk about the environmental importance, because the amount of fossil fuel and water they use to compress the C02 cancels the environmental impact.”
Strom, from Sioux Falls, owns a farm about ten miles south of Madison. The proposed Summit pipeline, not a feeder line but the main line on a different C02 project that is further along that the Navigator project, is slated to run through her property if the Public Utilities Commission ultimately gives the company building it the go ahead. The line would also run about a mile from the communities she taught in for 32 years.
She and countless others are concerned about the push to build these lines, what may actually be behind that push besides a positive environmental impact, the validity of the technology, the tactics being used to get landowners to sign away property rights for construction, and most importantly, the ultimate safety of any C02 pipeline. Clayton Rentschler, one of the organizers of the meeting, detailed what could possibly happen should there ever be a break. It is daunting information that can be obtained simply by looking at a pipeline break in Satartia, Mississippi.
Pipeline officials maintain that the technology is sound, does what it is intended to do, benefits the environment and economy long-term along with the communities it touches along the way, and that the safety and efficacy only continue to improve.
Affected landowners are being encouraged to join what is called the South Dakota Easement Team, which is legal representation as a whole for individual property owners.
A matter of public record for those that would like to learn more about the application firsthand, HB22-002 is the docket number. It can be found on the South Dakota Public Utilities Commission website. Go to Commission Actions, Hydro-carbon and carbon dioxide pipeline dockets, 2022 and there you should see the link.
By law, the PUC must hold public hearings on the filing. Three are scheduled in November - one will be in Canton on Nov 21 at 5:30, another in Flandreau on Nov 22 at 11:30, the final hearing will be held in Sioux Falls that same evening at 5:30. More to come in next week’s edition.