Keystone XL Tarsands Pipeline Route Still Crosses Sensitive Regions
September 5, 2012 - Bold Nebraska Executive Director Jane Kleeb released the following statement in response to TransCanada's new proposed route for the Keystone XL tarsands pipeline:
"The new route still risks our land, water and property rights.
The new route still crosses high water tables, sandy soil which leads to higher vulnerability of contamination and still crosses the Ogallala Aquifer, the lifeblood of Nebraska's economy.
"We will not allow middle American to be the middle man for a foreign tarsands pipeline wanting to export their extreme form of energy to the highest bidder.
"It's time for every candidate and elected officials to stand up for our land, water and property rights and tell TransCanada to get back to the drawing board. Give us a route that over 65% of Nebraskans have asked for--one that avoids the Sandhills and the Ogallala Aquifer, something Gov. Heineman asked President Obama to do and that we are asking TransCanada to honor."
Groundwater Contamination Map
The NE DEQ has no siting authority according to LB 1161. What they have authority to do is only review the pipeline, hold a public hearing and give their findings to Gov. Heineman. He will then approve or deny the route and send that to the State Department. The US State Department will still conduct their own environmental review of the pipeline.
The lawsuit challenging LB 1161 gets the first hearing on Sept. 14th in Lancaster County court. If that lawsuit is successful, TransCanada could have to go through the process that all other oil pipelines must follow--the Major Oil Pipeline Siting law and rules established by Nebraska's Public Service Commission.
Bold Nebraska and partner groups include landowner rights group NEAT, Farmers Union and Sierra Club will all hold landowner and citizen education sessions for folks to learn their property rights, eminent domain and risks to the health and safety of communities when dealing with a tarsands pipeline.