Shelby County’s Board of Supervisors has voted to establish regulations for the location of hazardous liquid pipelines. The proposed Summit Carbon Solutions pipeline route would run through the city limits of Earling.
Supervisor Steve Kenkel says the community is worried about the safety of the project. “If you want to build a house, or you want to build a shed, or you want to put in a utility line, you have to get a permit and you have to follow zoning ordinances,” Kenkel says. “I don’t know why hazardous pipelines would be any different.”
Jennifer Lefeber, manager of the emergency room at Harlan’s hospital, says if there’s a pipeline rupture, most emergency responders in the southwest Iowa county are volunteers. “This places more responsibility and burden on an already very limited valuable resource in our community,” she says.
The ordinance establishes separation distances between the proposed pipeline and homes and other community buildings. Representatives of Summit Carbon Solutions say the Iowa Utilities Board has sole authority to regulate pipelines and county restrictions on pipelines violate state law.
(Reporting by Iowa Public Radio’s Kendall Crawford)