Summit Carbon Solutions filed lawsuits against three sets of northern Iowa landowners for prohibiting agents surveying their properties


According to court documents, Summit Carbon Solutions filed lawsuits last week against three sets of northern Iowa landowners who allegedly barred its agents from measuring their properties.

The business is currently completing the path of its proposed pipeline, which would transport carbon dioxide from Iowa ethanol plants to North Dakota for subterranean sequestration. It expects state regulators to review its application for a permit in the spring.

The surveys are permitted by state law for hazardous liquid pipeline firms that have held informational meetings about the projects and notified landowners in writing about the surveys. They will assist Summit in determining the route and depth of its proposed pipeline.

Jess Harris, the company’s director of public affairs, stated, “While the vast majority of survey work conducted up to this point has involved the landowner voluntarily granting the company permission to access their land, there have been a few instances where Iowa law has been invoked to allow this vital work to continue.”

Summit issued each group of landowners in Dickinson, Hardin, and Kossuth Counties two letters by certified mail in March and July, per the company’s demands for injunctions. It asserts that the proprietors have denied access to the premises but provides no additional information on the alleged incidents.

According to court documents, the corporation seeks court orders prohibiting landowners from interfering with the surveys, with the possible assistance of law enforcement agents to assure compliance.

Navigator CO2 Ventures has recently initiated similar action against four groups of landowners, some of whom are contending that the state law allowing the surveys is unlawful.

On October 24, the court will hear one of Summit’s injunction requests. According to public records, this pertains to the property of Kent Kasischke in Hardin County.

The Daniel L. Wahl Family Trust in Dickinson County and the Dirk L. Hoover Farm Trust in Kossuth County have not yet been scheduled for court hearings.

According to court documents, Summit contends that further delays of the surveys would bring “substantial harm to the public interest in addition to economic harm to Summit.”

The cases were filed in state district court on September 19. As of Friday, none of the landowners had responded to the claims.

Summit claims to have secured easement agreements for approximately 52 percent of the projected 680-mile pipeline route in Iowa. Iowa law does not specify a minimum percentage of the route that must be covered by voluntary agreements.

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