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Delaware County Landowners Taking Stand Against Pipeline Surveyors

Surveyors with the proposed carbon capture pipeline project have been making their way through Delaware County this week – but local landowners are pushing back.

Navigator CO2 is proposing to construct a pipeline under miles of farmland from the Dyersville ethanol plant west through the county, just north of Earlville and Manchester and into Buchanan County and other counties across the state. Navigator says the purpose of the pipeline is to capture carbon dioxide emissions produced at the ethanol plant and other facilities that are currently being emitted into the atmosphere. During the capture process, the CO2 is dehydrated and compressed into a liquid form that can be safely made available for value-added commercial industrial uses or transported to a storage site, where the CO2 is securely and permanently injected approximately a mile underground beneath thick layers of rock. 

Landowners were recently notified of the proposed Heartland Greenway project, with the Iowa Utilities Board hosting a public informational meeting in Manchester last month. After that meeting, Navigator sent certified letters to the affected landowners to notify them that surveyors will be entering their farm ground to check out the land. 

Delaware County Supervisor Shirley Helmrichs:

Delaware County Sheriff John LeClere says as of Tuesday afternoon, their office had already received at least eighteen complaints from property owners or residents concerning the survey crews trespassing on their property. Both Sheriff LeClere and Supervisor Helmrichs say according to Iowa Code, the surveyors are not trespassing, but landowners can tell them to leave.

And she says most landowners have been doing exactly that.

The majority of landowners are opposed to this proposed pipeline with concerns over eminent domain, loss of quality farmland, the mission of this project and – most importantly – safety. They spoke out at the Manchester meeting a few weeks ago and again at the Delaware County Supervisors meeting last week. The Supervisors have taken a stand against the project too – and Helmrichs says they’re doing everything they can to stop it from happening.

The landowners plan to address the Manchester City Council at their regular council meeting this Monday night. They’re also inviting everyone to find out how this proposed pipeline could affect our communities at an informational meeting next Thursday night, September 15th at 7 pm at The Gathering Place in Manchester. 

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