An audience of about 75 farmland owners and others interested in learning more about the possible construction of a carbon pipeline across sections of north Iowa, including Chickasaw County, attended a public hearing Wednesday at the Chickasaw Event Center in New Hampton.
Summit Carbon Solutions is proposing to build the “Midwest Carbon Express” pipeline to capture carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions from ethanol plants and other CO2 producing industries in Iowa and four other midwest states. The gas would then be compressed into liquid form and transported via buried pipelines to an underground storage facility in North Dakota.
Among the chief concerns expressed by landowners are the easements the company would require to have the pipeline go through their property and about farmland being taken out of production. Summit’s Jake Ketzner says the pipeline is not like other energy-driven projects..
Financing of the $4.5 billion pipeline was challenged by one audience member wanting to know how much would fall on the taxpayer. Ketzner says funding for startup of the project is being done through investors and other private dollars, but there will be a tax credit for Summit once the pipeline is operational.
The hearing was hosted by the Iowa Utilities Board with board member Josh Byrnes telling the audience that the IUB is just beginning the process of gathering information that will determine IF Summit will be granted a permit for construction of the pipeline.
If granted, Summit hopes to begin construction in early 2023 with completion sometime in 2024. With the current plan, the pipeline’s beginning on the east end will be with the Homeland Energy Solutions ethanol plant between New Hampton and Lawler.