By O. Kay Henderson (Radio Iowa)
A district court judge has ruled the list of landowners who haven’t agreed to voluntary easements for the proposed Summit Carbon Solutions pipeline must be released to the public. The Iowa Chapter of the Sierra Club sued after the Iowa Utilities Board said the names would remain secret at the developer’s request.
Summit is still working to secure agreements with landowners for about 60% of its proposed carbon pipeline route through Iowa. If the Iowa Utilities Board grants eminent domain authority for the project, the list would be used to determine which properties could be seized without negotiations between Summit and landowners.
A spokeswoman for the Sierra Club’s Iowa chapter says reluctant landowners should be able to see the list so they can communicate with like-minded Iowans and organize unified opposition to the pipeline.
Summit could appeal the judge’s ruling. The company says it’s reasonable that landowners themselves get to choose whether their names and contact information are made public and Summit aims to protect landowners from harassment.
Earlier this month a Summit executive said about 750 Iowa landowners have voluntarily agreed to let Summit’s pipeline run through their property. Two other companies are proposing carbon pipelines through Iowa.