Summit Officials Take Stand In Utilities Board Hearing Over Pipeline Permit

Fort Dodge, Iowa — The Iowa Utilities Board hearing for the proposed Summit Carbon Solutions pipeline has entered its third week. Summit’s chief operating officer has been on the witness stand.

James Powell is in charge of design, construction and operation of the pipeline. He says Summit’s project is about ensuring ethanol plants that connect to the pipeline make a profit.

Brian Jordy, a lawyer for pipeline opponents, suggested the Utilities Board is being asked to pick pipeline investors as winners and property owners who don’t want the pipeline on their land will be the losers. Powell responded.

Powell says the company has rerouted its proposed pipeline 15-hundred times in Iowa.

Under questioning, Powell said he does not know the slate of investors in Summit Carbon Solutions. However, Powell did tell attorney Brian Jordy the pipeline company is a spin off of Summit Ag Group, which is owned by Bruce Rastetter, an entrepreneur who’s made investments in the pork and biofuels industries.

Summit Carbon Solutions is seeking eminent domain authority so unwilling landowners would be forced to grant the company permanent access to more than 900 parcels, or sections of property. Landowners opposed to the project testified during the first two weeks of the Utilities Board hearing, which is being held in Fort Dodge.