Proposed Oil Pipeline Would Go Through Iowa

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DES MOINES, Iowa -- Iowa could soon be the site of a major pipeline project that would allow crude oil to be transported across the country.

Energy Transfer Partners L.P., a Texas based company wants to build a pipeline connecting its gulf coast oil terminal to oil fields in North Dakota. The pipeline would cut diagonally through Iowa raising concerns from community activists.

"Pipelines are going to crack. It's not a matter of if, but when. I’m concerned that when it cracks, it's going to get into the drinking water of my family and friends,” said Patrick Stall, an activist for Iowa Citizens for Community Involvement.

If the project is approved by the Iowa Utilities Board and permitted by the Iowa DNR, the pipeline would run through 17 Iowa counties including Boone, Polk, Story, and Jasper. It would allow for crude oil from North Dakota’s Bakkan oil fields to be transported to existing pipelines in Illinois, before eventually making its way to the gulf coast.

Vicki Granado, a spokeswoman for Energy Transfer Partners L.P. says the project would create 8,000 construction jobs between Iowa, South Dakota, Illinois, and North Dakota. She adds counties affected by the project would also receive tax revenue.

Soon, land owners along the proposed path of the pipeline will receive notification explaining the project and asking the right of way to their land.

Before committing to anything, Iowa Attorney General Tom Miller encourages people to seek legal advice.

"Farmers shouldn't rush to enter any type of agreement with the pipeline owners. They should get more information, go to the meetings that will be in the counties, find out what other farmers are doing, and contact our office. Most of all, a farmer should have a lawyer advise them,” said Miller.

Granado says Energy Transfer Partners L.P. will host community meetings in the 17 counties by late summer or early fall.

If approved, the project will be completed by the end of 2016.

The company has provided Channel 13 with a complete map of its proposed pipeline. You can see its path from North Dakota to Texas below.


Proposed path of oil pipeline traveling through Iowa. (Energy Transfer Partners L.P.)


  • Richard Baker

    Regarding the oil pipeline proposal: so far all that I have heard is emotional speculation from the opponents. It is said that the risks OUTWEIGH the benefits, but nothing is said about what items are on the scale. Are there any other pipelines in the US? How old are they? What damage has been done? What has been their long-term negative impact? If they’ve leaked, how long did they take to repair? What was done to contain the spill? How successful was it? While they’re at it, maybe the nay-sayers should look into how much cropland is taken out of production by wind generators, the insects and birds that the blades kill, the earth-worm habitat that is now unusable. Everything with a benefit has an offset, but let’s look at FACTS, not speculation. Emotional judgments lead to bad decisions.

  • William Denison

    This pipeline according to the map would cross the Missouri river twice and the Mississippi river twice. Not to mention pretty much every river inside Iowas border. A oil spill into these already stressed waterways would be a hugh disaster.

    • gimmieabreak

      That’s why they have auto shutoff valves and emergency containment.
      (more jobs)
      Midwest spills are much easier contained than open oceans.
      I’d prefer reverting back to horse-n-buggy but that ain’t gonna happen.
      (even more jobs)

    • Jeremy Karns

      So why is it taking that route from the Dakotas to southern Illinois, then back across the rivers twice? Why not a more straight shot south?

      • Kevin B.

        Nebraska did their homework and won’t allow it. Now they just want to push it on a bunch of hicks from iowa.

    • gimmieabreak

      exactly my point Kevin…..access is a weeeeeee bit of a problem at the ocean floor.
      besides, they’ve made improvements with frequent pressure sensitive auto shutoff valves.

  • William Denison

    Its no wonder Mark Jacobs a once CEO of Reliant Energy, a Texas-based firm spent over $3,000,000 of his own money for his run for U.S Senate. He would of got every penny back and a whole lot more……just sayin

    • Troy Hendrickson

      Temporary jobs, filled by lot’s of imported labor and a significant spike in the crime rate is what other areas got, not to mention ground water contamination etc. Try watching the actual news sometime, this company has a horrid record.

  • Mark

    Iowa is crisscrossed by multiple pipelines. They transport gasoline, diesel fuel, natural gas, etc. Occasionally, there is a problem. Energy has to be transported from one place to another regardless of what sort it is. And it will be. More environmental mishaps have occurred from transportation via trucks, trains, barges and ships than from pipelines. Of course the environment needs to be protected but there must be a rational balance. There are those who seem to have knee jerk reactions and object to anything having to do with “energy”. I think if it came to the last barrel of oil on earth needed to warm a human being versus protecting a fish, some would choose the fish.

    • Troy Hendrickson

      Knee jerk describes those who seek to use fears of gas and oil shortages and promises of cheap gas and oil to make people act against their best interests, all to satiate the greed of men who could care less whether you live or die as long as the profit margin stays stable.

      • Mark

        We have no shortage of oil and gas. It is just that it doesn’t do much good in the ground, does it? Someday, it will be extracted and used. That is a fact. At this point in time and for the foreseeable future, wind, water, solar, geothermal, nuclear, etc., sources of energy are insufficient and they also present environmental and logistic issues. So choose your poison naysayers. Energy demands will continue to exist and will increase regardless of future efficiency of cars, appliances, lighting, industry, etc. There is plenty of coal but “you” hate coal. The best, cleanest, and safest alternatives are oil and gas. Why do some immediately oppose better, more efficient and safer transportation of oil and gas?

    • scott

      I To would choose the fish….OUR Environment can NOT support US if we continue to INVADE it…After all it can’t walk into a court room and please its case…

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