Must Read in the Montana Pioneer About Keystone XL and Eminent Domain

A reader pointed out this excellent piece in the Montana Pioneer by Paul Seamans and Darrell Garoutte about the threat posed by Keystone XL to local landowners:

We are here to tell you that just because a landowner signed an easement with TransCanada, it does not mean he or she supports the building of the project.
When the pipeline project was first proposed and we learned that our ranches were in the path, we were concerned about the protection of our drinking water, unsafe roads during construction and liability in the case of spills, or other problems. Years later, and with the permit decision imminent, our fears have not gone away—quite the opposite.
As we have become more educated on how the tar sands oil is extracted and what happens to the environment, a whole new set of concerns has arisen. We now know that the tar sands oil is not like conventional crude and it needs to be thinned down before it will flow, using carcinogenic chemicals that can’t be removed by any water-treatment plant.


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About the author

Don Pogreba

Don Pogreba has been writing about Montana politics since 2005 and teaching high school English since 2000. He's a former debate coach, and loyal, if often sad, fan of the San Diego Padres and Portland Timbers. He spends far too many hours of his life working at school and on his small business, Big Sky Debate.
His work has appeared in Politico and Rewire.
In the past few years, travel has become a priority, whether it's a road trip to some little town in Montana or a museum of culture in Ísafjörður, Iceland.


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  • And how many jobs at the six Pump Stations in Montana?


    How many pounds per hour of coal burned to energized five 6,500 hp pumps at Pump Station, if 40% MW came from regional coal?

    Around 2,000 # coal per hour to impell Dilbit 50 miles forward to next Pump Station,

    Maybe 4,000 pounds carbon dioxide per hour.

    50 miles DILBIT weigh about as much as
    500 RR Locomotives @200,000 #/EA,

    go figure how many horses to pull one RR Locomotive,

    Compare to 29 KXL MT Pumps at 6,500 rated hp EA, plus motor and transmission line inefficiencies.

    How much airborne Mercury emmission from burning coal to power 29 Pumps in Montana?

    Couple pounds per year?

    maybe 27% of the 570 barrel per minute Dilbit would be WHAT?

    NGC bought at 8 cents / gallon!

      • I don’t care what Brian Schweitzer said, KXL is NOT an on-ramp for Bakken crude. No oilman in his/her right mind would mix the Bakken crude (easily refinable into high priced gasoline and other nicely salable goods) with that crap from the Alberta tar sands (refinable into ONLY the filthiest diesel used to power ocean-going going freight ships – think the endless line of cargo ships bringing junk to Walmart from China!) The Alberta tar sands crude cannot be made into gasoline, nor can it be made into clean diesel for cars and trucks in the US. In fact it is forbidden to be used in the US it is so dirty and cannot be cleaned up enough to meet our anti-pollution standards – by law.

        So regardless of our “debt of gratitude” to Canada – it need not be paid with this filthy piece of crap. It is estimated there will be at least 84 leaks over the next 10 years on the KXL. We have no idea how to clean this crap up. That spill on the Kalamazoo River is still there – we’re still trying to figure out how to get that mess dealth with and it is just a tiny example of what we are in for if KXL is built.

        Sorry Craig. Thanks but no thanks.

  • Who knows if MarketLink will/will not happen?

    What Port Arthur refinery will buy A MIX of Bakken crude + natural gas condensate dissolved bitumen? ?

    Without MarketLink, KXL is a private carrier granted public carrier standing, and one more reason KXL does not deserve eminent domain, free right of way, exemption from PHMSA 8 penny/barrel safety fund, and no Environmental Impact Statement //Study on Cushing to Nederland leg.

    KXL is the link between a foreign owned dilbit supply chain, and one USA, and five foreign owned dilbit refineries at tidewater seaports inTexas.

    I stand with the objecting landowners!

  • RE: “Threat posed by Keystone XL to local landowners” and “We now know that the tar sands oil is not like conventional crude and it needs to be thinned down before it will flow, using carcinogenic chemicals that can’t be removed by any water-treatment plant.”

    Here are the Keystone XL votes from Senator Tester and Senator Daines that matter….Look pretty similar.

  • It’s stunning how easily a foreign corporation can seize private property. Lax eminent domain laws threw Montana landowners under the pipeline.

  • Perhaps in California or Vermont, headlines and leads would have stated the obvious. Minimum estimates of 30,000 gallons of Bakken Crude. Typical Bakken may run .012% BENZENE, volume to volume! Maybe 360 gallons of Benzene Plus 360 gallons toluene in Yellowstone River.

    Someplace in body of article something about slow out gassing of toluene and benzyne. Benzene historical ova killer.

    Nevertheless, go to Casper Star for the darn interesting facts about the Poplar Pipeline accidental discharge.

    AND a huge QUESTION. How many gallons intentionaly discharged to force inspection pig through the pipeline at the bottom of the Yellowstone River ? ?

    or maybe i did not read that right

    geezer bob

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