Informational meetings begin this week for landowners in 18 Iowa counties.
A Texas company wants to lay an underground pipeline to transfer crude oil diagonally across the state. Energy Transfer Partners is seeking approval from the Iowa Utilities Board for the so-called Bakken pipeline which would run from North Dakota to Illinois.
IUB Engineering Manager Don Stersma says the meetings will not be a chance for landowners to go on record for or against the project.
“I’m afraid this is not the opportunity to do that,” Stersma says. “That will come later. I hope people who show up thinking that are not disappointed.”
The company and the utilities board will answer questions at meetings in 12 counties this week starting in Lyon, Lee, Sioux and Van Buren counties, with 8 more meetings the 3rd week of December. Stersma says there are as many as 300 landowners affected in some counties.
“Every landowner in the corridor should have gotten a letter,” Stersma says. “Plus there's notice published in newspapers in the area plus there's considerable word of mouth.”
Stersma says the meetings are meant to inform landowners about the permit process and their legal rights before the company can begin contacting them about easements.