Is Carbon Capture Dead in South Dakota?
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South Dakota and Iowa landowners have renewed reason to celebrate, as a major carbon-capture pipeline company is pulling up stakes.

Yesterday The Dakota Scout broke the news that Navigator CO2 Ventures is suspending its pipeline plans in five eastern counties of the Mount Rushmore state, as well as several in northwest Iowa.

According to that account, the company sent a letter to at least seven property owners along its proposed route. It reads, in part:

The project is getting shut down permanently…. Negotiations are no longer on the table because the project is getting shut off.

Republican state Representative Jon Hansen tweeted his delight over the news.

The @blackrock owned Navigator CO2 carbon sequestration pipeline is dead in South Dakota. We will not be robbed of our heritage by out-of-state, foreign backed companies. We will never stop defending our private property rights. Under God, the People Rule.

This latest news follows on the heels of the South Dakota Public Utilities Commission (PUC) unanimously rejecting Navigator’s bid to install a carbon-capture pipeline in the state. It’s known as the Heartland Greenway, and was originally planned to span dozens of counties in South Dakota, Nebraska, Minnesota, Iowa, and Illinois.

Immediately after it said no to Navigator, the PUC also denied another company’s application to install a carbon-capture pipeline. Summit Carbon Solutions met with unanimous resistance in North Dakota last month as well, when that state’s Public Services Commission denied its siting permit application.

But the story is far from over.

Last year, Navigator moved its headquarters from Dallas, Texas, to Omaha, Nebraska, to oversee development of the Heartland Greenway and, according to Carbon Herald, to allow “the business to expand and become a full-service provider.”

And on Thursday, Navigator spokesman Andy Bates released a statement, quoted by Dakota News Now, that makes clear they have no intention of giving up. He wrote:

As we are evaluating the next steps of permitting in South Dakota, we have paused some of our right of way work in certain areas, like South Dakota and some parts of Iowa, which has meant releasing a few of the land agent contract teams working on behalf of the project. The remaining land teams will be reallocated to ensure coverage across the footprint and continued conversations with landowners. Navigator remains committed to project development in a collaborative fashion, and is continuing to work towards that goal.

Indeed, both companies can reapply for transmission permits in South Dakota. A PUC spokesman told KELOLAND News that the commission has not received any notification from Navigator, “so commissioners aren’t available for comment or interview.”