Friday, July 26, 2013

Bold Nebraska's Ben Gotschall: why TransCanada is deregistering pipeline easements with 288 landowners

No one should let his/her guard down. It ain't over 'till it's over. This may be an attempt to weaken a landowner suit which has TransCanada worried. Full Post is at BoldNebraska, here. An excerpt:
     According to TransCanada's release, "TransCanada representatives will de-register easement agreements on properties in the following [Nebraska] counties: Boone, Garfield, Greeley, Hamilton, Holt, Jefferson, Keya Paha, Merrick, Nance, Rock, Saline, York and Wheeler. In total, the easements that will be de-registered involve 288 landowners who controlled 367 properties and 58 temporary work space agreements."  The release also states that landowners will be able to keep the payments made to them on the now-unnecessary easements.
     Now for a warning. We are pretty sure TransCanada made this announcement hoping folks would think – ‘Well, if they are letting them keep the easement payment maybe I should sign up and hope the route is moved or not approved and I can keep the money.’ This is exactly what TransCanada wants us to think so they can tell the State Dept., President and the press that all the landowners are on board, its just a vocal minority that is against the project. TransCanada has recently hired a bunch of new lobby and PR firms and each and every move is calculated. The only reason we see victories like today is because of the hard work of citizens and landowners standing in solidarity and holding out. You are forcing them to be more reasonable. Each of this victories is no mystery and no coincidence.

      TransCanada's announcement on easements comes on the heels of the news that the landowner lawsuit against the state of Nebraska will go to trial.  The State of Nebraska and Attorney General Bruning have twice attempted to have the lawsuit dismissed, and three times the judge has ruled in favor of citizens to uphold the process.  The new route, approved by Gov. Heineman as a result of LB 1161, could be nullified if citizens win that lawsuit and Heineman's route approval is deemed unconstitutional.

Below: new TransCanada Keystone XL lies and half-truths, the most outrageous of which is a slide which claims Keystone operates under "strict" Alberta environmental rules. Yeah. So strict that there have been 9,000 violations of those rules in recent years (that we know about) and just 37 actions by the Alberta Province regarding them.

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