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Eminent Domain: OK for Canadian Company to seize property in USoA?


Should foreign company be permitted to condemn your land and seize it for their corporate goals?

yet also:

Where there is such a 'right of way' easement, is there any reason to prohibit or deny alternate use along path as well, such as for renewable source like windmill, or highway / public transportation? Or both? Or for delivery of electricity? Pipeline for water?

______________________ [optional resources ] ______________________

TransCanada begins condemnation proceedings - 6 hours ago  •  By NICHOLAS BERGIN | LINCOLN JOURNAL STAR [extracts]

TransCanada, the company that wants to build the $8 billion Keystone XL pipeline, filed court documents Tuesday in nine Nebraska counties starting eminent domain proceedings to get the 12 percent of easements it still needs here.

Last week, landowners filed lawsuits seeking to stop eminent domain and invalidate the 2012 law that gave the governor power to approve the pipeline route. An earlier lawsuit that brought up similar arguments was thrown out by the Nebraska Supreme Court on a technicality, letting the law stand by default. [While four of the seven judges agreed the landowners who brought the suit should have standing, Nebraska law requires a supermajority -- five judges -- in agreement to strike down legislation as unconstitutional.]
Water-or-Oil? Windmill? Aquifer?
Nebraska holdouts mull next move on Keystone XL, some suing again - By Deena Winter - January 16, 2015   | Nebraska Watchdog - 35 Comments [extracts]

For guys like Jim Tarnick, 39, it’s not about angling for a higher price. It’s also not about hugging trees. It’s about the corn and beets he raises five miles southeast of Fullerton, and the 100-head of cattle he runs over ground where water flows just six feet below ground in some places, or at ground level during a wet spring.

“Just a little leak could end many farm operations around here,” he said.

When Tarnick learned the pipeline would come within 50 feet of his farmhouse and wells, he began fighting. He doesn’t want to see his water contaminated by an oil spill, and TransCanada hasn’t exactly won him over.

Tribal Leaders Tell Obama to Reject Keystone XL Pipeline, Request U.S. Interior Meeting -1/15/15
Several indigenous leaders have officially asked President Barack Obama to reject the Keystone XL oil pipeline, citing concerns about consultation, treaty rights and impact on tribal homelands.

“We stand in solidarity with our Oceti Sakowin relatives and encourage the Department of Interior to dissent from a KXL permit approval and give President Obama all the more reason to reject this dirty tar sands pipeline,” said Tom Goldtooth, executive director of the Indigenous Environmental Network, in a statement. “We ask this for the benefit of the land, the water, our communities, our sacred sites, and the territorial integrity of the sacredness of Mother Earth.”

The Other Pipeline You Should Worry About - By DAN KAUFMAN - JAN. 16, 2015
Enbridge, a $40 billion Canadian company, which has been responsible for several hundred spills in the past decade, including one in 2010 near Marshall, Mich., reportedly the largest and most expensive inland oil spill in American history.

Pols, Lobbyists Cash in on Keystone By Alan Neuhauser Jan. 13, 2015
Oil pipeline? More like a cash funnel.

The oil and gas industry, environmental groups, construction groups and building trade unions gave more than $232.3 million to lawmakers last year alone, .. And that doesn’t include the $154.4 million they spent on lobbying, a figure that itself excludes money spent on so-called “strategic advisors” and other influence peddlers who are not required to publicly report their contracts or income – let alone outside expenditures by super PACs.
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dhsindyRetired considering supplemental income.Commented:
The use of eminent domain is suppose to be for the public good of the local people.  I have an easement on one side of my house for roads so the local people have access to their property.  I have an easement on another side of my house for utilities to run to my neighbors.  Why would I want to run a pipeline under my property for a foreign company especially for something as toxic as tar sand oil.  That is just stupid.  Let them run their pipeline to Vancouver or Nova Scotia and assume their own risks.

Of the $8 billion price tag how much is set aside for recovery of spills.  I would also like to know, how much money is allocated for removal and cleanup after the 50 year life span of the pipeline?  People are considering only the immediate impact in construction jobs.  How about the pipeline pay a toll for all the oil that is pumped across our land?

Is it really needed with the over supply of oil we have now?  If it does get built, it should be owned by a US company so we have better control over it, period.
SunBowAuthor Commented:
[note: this comment only extracts of news, optional resource for discussion]

Montana oil spill contaminates water supply
About 960 barrels of oil reaches Yellowstone River. - GLENDIVE, Mont., Jan. 21 (UPI) - By Daniel J. Graeber
Residents in a Montana community affected by the Yellowstone River oil spill are urged to find alternative sources of drinking water, a county government said.

"Residents will be able to resume using their water once the water quality is determined safe," emergency managers said in a late Tuesday statement.

Montana Gov. Steve Bullock, who declared a state of emergency for the affected counties, said Monday he ordered state agencies to deliver bottled water to area residents.

Cancer-Causing Agent Detected in Water After Montana Oil Spill -
Truckloads of fresh drinking water were being delivered to the city for distribution.

Crews cleaning up Montana oil spill hampered by ice - By The Associated Press - 01/20/2015
Crews working to clean up crude oil that spilled in and near the Yellowstone River in eastern Montana and prevent it from traveling farther downstream were hampered by ice covering much of the river

Ice may delay restart of pipeline's breached Montana section  - Tue Jan 20, 2015
"It's far too early to tell how long our response activity might take," EPA spokesman Rich Mylott said.

Early water testing revealed an abnormally high level of volatile organic compounds, although that does not pose a public health hazard in the short term, Montana's Department of Environmental Quality said in a statement.

Yellowstone River Oil Spill Contaminates Montana Town's Water With Cancer-Causing Benzene - By Eric Zerkel - Jan 21 2015
Days after up to 40,000 gallons of crude oil spilled from a broken pipeline..the spill is now under a drinking warning after elevated levels of a cancer-causing chemical were found in the town's drinking supply.

The warning was issued Monday for Glendive, Montana, a town of around 6,000 people on the North Dakota border, more than two days after the spill occurred, after tests on a water treatment plant revealed concentrations of Benzene above limits safe for consumption, the Billings Gazette reports.

As the Centers for Disease Control notes, Benzene is a "natural part of crude oil," and ingesting high concentrations of the chemical can cause digestion issues, like vomiting, in the short term, and anemia, leukemia and other cancers in the long term.
SunBowAuthor Commented:
More job$

Downstream is (insufficient/inadequate pipe welding, inspection, bonding, contingency, shutoff valves)..

Nearly 3M gallons of brine spill; ND oil boom's largest leak - January 21, 2015 - Associated Press
Nearly 3 million gallons of saltwater generated by oil drilling have leaked from a North Dakota pipeline, an official said Wednesday, the largest such spill since the state's current oil boom began and nearly three times worse than previous record spills. Two creeks have been affected

Operator Summit Midstream Partners LLC detected the pipeline spill on Jan. 6, about 15 miles north of Williston and told health officials then. Officials say they weren't given a full account of the size until Tuesday.

The saltwater, known as brine, is an unwanted byproduct of oil and natural gas production that is much saltier than sea water and may also contain petroleum and residue from hydraulic fracturing operations.

The new spill is almost three times larger than one that fouled a portion of the Fort Berthold Indian Reservation in July. Another million-gallon saltwater spill in 2006, near Alexander, is still being cleaned up nearly a decade later.

Summit Midstream said in a statement Wednesday that about 65,000 barrels of a mix of freshwater and brine have been pumped out from Blacktail Creek. Brine also reached the bigger Little Muddy Creek and potentially the Missouri River.

"Until we start holding companies fully accountable with penalties, I don't think we're going to change this whole situation we have in North Dakota," said Peterson, a board member of the Northwest Landowners Association.

Regulators order pipeline upgrades after Montana oil spill - By Matthew Brown Associated Press - 01/23/2015
Bridger Pipeline of Casper, Wyoming, announced plans to bury its line deeper beneath the Yellowstone to protect against future accidents.
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SunBowAuthor Commented:
More job$

Iowa wind energy tax credit under fire - December 02, 2014 • ERIN MURPHY
DES MOINES | A tax break credited with producing renewable energy and jobs in Iowa is being targeted by conservative groups calling for its elimination.

Iowa has become a national leader in wind energy production, and the state and federal tax credits are lauded by those in the industry. But some groups say the tax break provided to wind energy producers should be eliminated.

Americans for Prosperity, a national organization that promotes free-market ideals and is funded by the conservative billionaire industrialist Koch brothers from Kansas, recently launched a print advertising campaign in eight states. (Iowa is not among them.)

The literature implores citizens to encourage federal lawmakers to call their congressional representative and urge him or her to vote against extending the wind energy production tax credit. The ad states that extension of the tax break “will cost $13 billion over the next decade.”

“Americans have been on the hook for these wind subsidies for two decades with little to show for it,” said Americans for Prosperity federal affairs director Brent Gardner in a statement. “While large corporations have gotten comfortable collecting our tax dollars, the industry hasn’t made it in the market, failing to produce long-term job creation or energy affordability.”

Another group, the American Energy Alliance, which is also encouraging citizens to pressure their congressional leaders, calls the wind energy production tax credit “a key part of President Obama and (U.S. Senate) Majority Leader (Harry) Reid's attack on affordable energy, from natural gas and coal to nuclear power.”

Supporters say wind energy is a clean, renewable energy source that helps reduce America’s dependency on foreign oil.

Iowa produces more than a quarter of its energy from wind, and the industry employs roughly 7,000 people around the state.
SunBowAuthor Commented:
Last call, as while new congress & old Pres began year saying they wanted to work together, and would, legislators first opted to concentrate spending time on bills known as having veto content. As Keystone is getting passage, the issue/question is expected to remain unresolved (by courts) for years to come, which likely means to await some justices to leave the bench.

_______________ [ some of the other spills of same month ] __________

Hazmat, fire crews contain small oil spill in Jacksonville - WCTI Staff  - Jan 11 2015
an oil line at the auto shop ruptured and 50 to 100 gallons of oil leaked

Oil spill in Ohio injures more than 400 birds - BRYAN
Jan 6, 2015

A large amount of used lubricating oil that spilled into a creek Saturday from an above-ground storage tank injured about 400 waterfowl — mostly mallards — and posed a temporary risk to area waterways.
Fire crews on scene of oil spill at Rosedale home
Fuel tank explodes in basement of home - Jan 07, 2015
Some of the oil was pumped into the front yard through the sump pump.
SunBowAuthor Commented:
Closing after about two weeks without comments. Thanx, dhsindy.

In summary/conclusion, while there is much hoopla over passing bill called Keystone, there is little to be had for either disclosing content of bill or answering questions experts raise, beyond calling it a jobs bill (35 new ones, mostly for refineries at end, with loss of ??? jobs for alternative pre-existing transport methods (truck/rail), presumed lack of inspection and oversight & quality control).
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