With any major project that is meant to improve infrastructure, there are always a lot of questions, as well as there should be. You cannot do a project of this scale without considering the implications to safety, the environment, land and property rights, and economics.
Navigator CO2 Ventures is one of the companies working to install a CO2 transport pipeline across the Midwest, with a large footprint of the project in Iowa. This project has not been without its share of controversy. In fact, the word pipeline now just comes with a negative connotation. The project has generated a lot of spirited discussions, for lack of a better term.
Navigator VP of Government and Public Affairs is Elizabeth Burns-Thompson. She says that Navigator welcomes the tough question on this project. In fact, at meetings they have had, she has broached the topic if nobody else has wanted to address the elephant in the room. Property rights and eminent domain are the highest on the list of concerns for landowners. So much so, that even environmental groups who oppose the pipeline are seizing on that fear to help them in their fight.
Burns Thompson talks about how they are not wanting to violate property rights or use eminent domain. It is not going to be beneficial to the company on many levels. Navigator is doing everything it can to achieve a voluntary partnership with landowners.
She adds that Navigator isn’t just paying for an easement, but also for the productivity of the land. She talks about their financial and environmental responsibilities to make the land whole once again.
Burns-Thompson adds that many people on the team, herself included, are Iowa natives. They want to make sure they are doing right about the state. They don’t want their names associated with any irreparable damage to Iowa’s farms and families.
This only begins to scratch the surface of the discussions I had with Elizabeth Burns-Thompson about the heaviest questions concerning this pipeline project. You can listen to our entire conversation under the podcast tab or by clicking right here.