Carbon pipeline project spanning five states moving forward

Summit Carbon Solutions is encouraged by the progress the company is making on a pipeline that would traverse five states.

The company wants to construct and operate the pipeline to transport carbon from more than 30 ethanol plants to underground injection control facilities in North Dakota. The 2,000-mile pipeline dubbed the "Midwest Carbon Express," would also run through Iowa, Minnesota and Nebraska. About 469 miles would go through South Dakota.

The South Dakota Public Utilities Commission is still deciding when to hold hearings about the pipeline. Suggestions at Tuesday's meeting ranged from April to September.

"We are in an indefinite right now but we need to end that 'indefinite' period and we need to get this scheduled whether it is scheduled in April, May or September," PUC Chairman Chris Nelson said.

The South Dakota portion represents an $800 million investment in the state, according to Courtney Ryan, a spokesperson for SCS.

"In South Dakota, Summit Carbon Solutions has partnered with 440 landowners to sign over 700 easement agreements (54% of the proposed route in the state)," Ryan said in an email to The Center Square. "Based on this level of support, our team remains incredibly encouraged by the progress we've made to date and look forward to continuing to advance our project through the regulatory process, including the scheduling of a hearing on the permitting of our infrastructure project."

Iowa and North Dakota officials will consider when to hold hearings in the coming weeks, according to Ryan.

Some landowners oppose the pipeline. Several have filed suit against the company and the dates of possible trials were considered by the commission.

According to a November news release from the company, SCS plans to begin construction in 2023 and be fully operational by 2024.

The South Dakota PUC will discuss hearing dates again when it meets in January.

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