Map-of-Pipeline-route-IAFREMONT — Bill Alexander gets emotional walking out to the farm fields where the proposed 1,134-mile, 30-inch-in-diameter Bakken crude oil pipeline would run down the middle of the property.

Alexander fears oil spills, long-term damage to nutrient-rich soil and turning his back on the livelihood that’s supported four generations of his wife Pam’s family, future generations and their retirement.

“People say the pipeline will create jobs,” said Pam Alexander. “This land has been giving people jobs already, but that doesn’t seem to matter.”

The Alexanders said they rejected easement bids that scaled from $5,900 an acre to $16,000. They won’t negotiate. They aren’t selling.

But they might not have a choice.

Resistance has been vocal to the pipeline that would cross 343 miles through 18 Iowa counties — much of it fertile farm ground — but official filings suggest most landowners already are on board.

On Thursday, protesters presented 1,000 new letters to state regulators from landowners, environmentalists, personal property activists and others. Earlier in the week, the Sierra Club filed critical testimony from climate change experts at Iowa State University, the State Archaeologist and water and land scholars.

Letters of opposition outnumber support four-to-one. And supporters, such as trade unions and business groups, are questioned for being from out of state or having a financial gain in the estimated $3.78 billion project, including $1.1 billion in Iowa.

Two-thirds of landowners signed

Full story here.

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