Biofuel company joins Summit in renewed push advocating for CO2 pipeline
Backers of a major proposed biofuel project in South Dakota are speaking out in support of Summit Carbon Solutions’ proposed CO2 pipeline, saying if South Dakota does not accept Summit, they may find ways to make money elsewhere.
Gevo is developing an 800-million dollar plant that will make biofuel for jets. Kent Hartwig, the company's Director of State Government Affairs. joined representatives from Summit at the latest Brown County Commission meeting.
The company plans to build the plant near Lake Preston in Kingsbury County, which doesn’t have a setback ordinance. A setback is the minimum distance pipelines could be built from homes and businesses.
But some counties – including Brown County – have created their own stricter setback laws. Summit contends these rules make a pipeline unfeasible.
Hartwig said because of this, decisions in one county could drag down others.
“If the CCS pipeline is not available to the Lake Preston Zero One Plant, this facility will be economically disadvantaged to other locations we are actively looking at to develop across the country. So failure for the Summit Pipeline to be built in South Dakota puts our Lake Preston project in severe risk of being relocated to a more advantageous location that has the availability of CCS,” said Hartwig.
A concerned citizen who did not identify himself questioned Hartwig’s response.
“I guess I am curious as to why Gevo, just now, all of a sudden showed up here now that the PUC and PHEMSA said that pipelines has to adhere to county ordinances. Why weren’t you here ahead of the game, rather than letting the Summit Carbon Solutions try to ram this pipeline through the people’s private property?”
Hartwig said his position requires him to cover multiple states which is why he never before presented information to the Brown County commission.
The South Dakota PUC recently rejected Summit’s application to build a carbon pipeline, but the company said they plan to reapply.