Proposed carbon dioxide pipeline raises concerns to Linn County residents

Published: Dec. 2, 2021 at 5:44 AM CST
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LINN CO., Iowa (KCRG) - Jessica Wiskus is one of many people, who live near Lisbon, who received a notification from a Texas-based company, Navigator Heartland Greenway, wanting to build a 1300-mile pipeline.

“My biggest concern is that we have reason to believe that we aren’t being told the full story,” said Wiskus, of Linn County.

The pipe would transport liquid Carbon Dioxide in five states and across Iowa to be stored in Illinois. Public meetings are being held for people to learn their rights as homeowners and what the project entails. One of the meetings will be held at the Veterans Memorial Building in Cedar Rapids.

Wiskus has made plans of her own. She has designed a handout and has been going door to door inviting people to her meeting slated for Saturday. She wants to get all the neighbors together ahead of the meeting.

“I consider the land to be part of my family,” she said. “My father’s farm has been here for generations. I missed the land. I think Iowa is the most beautiful place in the world.”

Iowa Utilities Board Communications Director Don Tormey said this is just the beginning of the process.

Tormey said the 22-public hearings are procedural. He said the company can’t obtain a permit without holding informational meetings, answering questions from the public, or start working out deals with landowners.

“It could take months for the board to make a decision,” he said. “This isn’t something that we take lightly. The board has a very thorough and comprehensive review process. They base their decision on the record of information submitted into the docket.”

Tormey said it was a process that needs to happen to ensure Wiskus’ concerns don’t become a reality.

“Everybody I spoke with was completely willing to do what’s necessary and take one for the team if the project was actually for the future of Iowa,” said Wiskus. “But if the project was actually for a profit, why do the people of Iowa have to take all the risk.”

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