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Lee County organizes opposition to proposed CO2 pipeline

Lee County residents continue to speak out against a proposed carbon dioxide pipeline that would run through the county.

An estimated 50 residents attended a meeting in Donnellson to voice their opposition to the project. They are concerned about the potential impact the proposed pipeline would have on their properties.

Lee County Board of Supervisors Chairperson Garry Seyb attended the meeting. He said the full board opposes the project, which is being proposed by Texas-based Navigator CO2 Ventures.

“They're finding some resistance, I think, along the entire route through to this pipeline,” Seyb said. “It's a hazardous pipeline.”

He said opponents plan to rally again at 10 a.m. on Tuesday, February 21, on the west side steps at the state capitol.

Iowa landowners and environmentalists also rallied last week at the state capitol to oppose this project and two other carbon dioxide pipeline construction proposals in the state.

They want lawmakers to pass a bill that would require pipeline companies seeking eminent domain to disclose all its investors, and another requiring these companies to receive written permission from nearby landowners before a carbon pipeline could be built.

Seyb said he has been speaking with Lee County residents about the proposed pipeline for the past year, and has found most oppose the project.

“The people are really trying to get themselves educated about it,” he said. “The more they find out, the more they're not in support of it.”

Navigator wants to build the Heartland Greenway pipeline through Iowa, Illinois, and three other states.

The pipeline would carry pressurized and liquified carbon dioxide along a network of more than 1,360 miles of carbon steel pipe to an underground storage site in central Illinois.

A study commissioned by the Iowa Renewable Fuels Association said the state’s ethanol plants won’t be competitive with those in other states if they are not able to access carbon capture pipelines.

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