Cerro Gordo supervisors get update from group wanting to construct Summit carbon capture pipeline

MASON CITY — The Cerro Gordo County Board of Supervisors this morning received an update from representatives of Summit Carbon Solutions on their proposal to place a carbon capture pipeline through 680 miles of the state, including through about 28 miles of Cerro Gordo County.

Kaylee Langrell of TurnKey Logistics representing Summit says the company has easement agreements with about two-thirds of the land owners in Cerro Gordo County where the pipeline would be placed.  “In Cerro Gordo County, as of the 19th of this month, we were at around  65% of easement miles acquired. In the state of Iowa, we were at about almost 55% of easement miles acquired, as that is as of October 19th.”

Eminent domain has been a key election issue at the county and state level regarding the construction of carbon capture pipelines. Langrell says the company does not want to use eminent domain if at all possible.   “We don’t like eminent domain either. It’s a long process, it’s costly. We want to avoid it. Our goal is 100% voluntary acquisition. In Cerro Gordo County, we’re at 65%, and that was as of last Wednesday. Things have picked up, and I think I’m fairly confident that we won’t have any issues. Eminent domain is a necessary evil sometimes when there are title issues. It doesn’t matter, you could have any person that may have the right to that land sign an easement that’s not valid under law. That’s when we’d be ok with using it, it’s a time we’d probably have to use it, and that’s why we would have to use it to get this project done.”

Langrell says Summit’s investment would result in about $2 million in incoming tax revenue for the county.  “We did have these numbers run by Ernst & Young, and they are based on the total construction and operations cost of the project. The total investment estimate into Cerro Gordo County would be around $49 million, and the total new annual property tax is estimated to be around $1.9 million. That would be a first-year estimate.”

In Cerro Gordo County, the pipeline would run from west to east right along County Road B-43. Summit says they hope to start construction of the pipeline late next summer.