Rally on eminent domain laws held at South Dakota Capitol  (Audio)

July 7, 2023

Mike Tanner

PIERRE, S.D.–Opponents of proposed carbon capture pipelines that would cut through South Dakota held a rally Thursday at the state Capitol in Pierre and their message was clear: They want Governor Kristi Noem to call a special session of the legislature to reform the state’s laws regarding the use of eminent domain.

Ed Fischbach, an Aberdeen-area farmer whose land is near a proposed pipeline route, was among those who spoke at the rally…..

Two companies, Summit Carbon Solutions and Navigator CO2 Ventures, have proposed pipelines that would cut across South Dakota, taking CO2 from partner ethanol plants and moving it to underground storage in North Dakota and Illinois. Carbon dioxide is a by-product of the ethanol production process.

Representative Jon Hansen of Dell Rapids says the rally shows the time for the Governor and legislators to pick sides has arrived…

Other lawmakers at the rally included Representative Karla Lems of Canton and House Minority Leader Oren Lesmeister of Parade.

House Majority Leader Will Mortenson of Pierre, did not attend the rally. He said in a statement that while he “led the charge for farmers and ranchers during this year’s session,” unless “we get agreement with the Senate on some proposals, we shouldn’t call a special session and neither should the governor. It would be a waste of taxpayer dollars and legislator time.”

The rally took place in the Rotunda, just feet from Noem’s office on the second floor of the Capitol.

Brown County farmer Jared Bossly was carrying a stack of over 2.000 signed petitions (pictured) calling for a special session that he turned over to Noem’s office.

The carbon capture pipeline company using eminent domain, Summit Carbon Solutions, and its proponents have defended the process as a necessary step for ensuring the future of corn-based ethanol. They point out that the company has already negotiated easements with about 70% of impacted landowners in the state.