Farmers from Boone County are rejecting the new 2000 miles carbon capture pipeline at an informal meeting on Monday. They united in refusing the easement offer that would allow the pipeline to pass through their land.
A presentation was held on Monday at the Boone’s History Center, attended by about 50 of the area’s residents intended to familiarize landowners with the project. That meeting is one of many planned to be held in the 30 Iowa counties the pipeline would go through.
They are needed as the project would require land easements and potentially eminent domain to be carried on. There was also a meeting at the Gateway Conference Center in Ames last month, where many with land along the pipeline’s proposed route took issue with the project.
The Iowa pipeline will be built by Summit Carbon Solutions and will require $4.5 billion for the permanent sequestration of the carbon emissions from 32 ethanol plants in five states throughout the US. The project has the potential to create 14,000 – 17,000 jobs and store emissions equivalent to those from 2.6 million vehicles annually.
Some of the criticism from the farmers is regarding the pipeline route. According to Tom Kauffman, an owner of land in Boone and Wright counties, the route would take the pipeline straight through his drainage tiles, installed in the last five years. “It’s gonna screw up everything,” he explained.
Other residents are concerned about safety and environmental damage and fear that the CO2 pipeline project would be a repeat of the aftermath of the Dakota Access Pipeline, which left long-term impacts on agricultural land.
“You can’t put topsoil back once you take it off…That’s the problem. That’s the problem with what’s going on in here,” said Keith Puntenney from Boone, who was impacted by the Dakota Access Pipeline.
The opposition from the farmers is a setback for the Iowa carbon capture and storage pipeline. Such a project could have a substantial impact on the industrial decarbonization efforts in the region. It is also one of the world’s biggest infrastructures of this kind so it could help accelerate the adoption of carbon capture technology and reduce emissions of heavy emitters.