Last week, MAIN Coalition Chairman Ed Wiederstein wrote to the Iowa Utilities Board (IUB) to stress the importance of the Dakota Access Pipeline and how further delays directly impact Iowans across the state.
Iowa Utilities Board
1375 E. Court Avenue
Des Moines, Iowa 50319-0069
March 30, 2016
Chair Geri Huser and the Board Members of the Iowa Utilities Board:
I write to you today regarding the status of the Dakota Access Pipeline permit (Docket No. HLP-2014-0001). The Dakota Access Pipeline, which will be a vital link in our nation’s energy infrastructure, is being unfairly delayed, contradicting the decision of your Board to award the permit to this project. As Chairman of the Midwest Alliance for Energy Infrastructure Now (MAIN), I would like to highlight the concerns of the members of my coalition in light of recent events.
As the Board Members stated before awarding the permit to construct the Dakota Access Pipeline, this project does indeed pass the fundamental test of Public Convenience and Need (PCN). We have supported this position both in front of the Iowa Utilities Board as well in the forum of public opinion.
The Dakota Access Pipeline will benefit both the local workforce of our state, as well as many of its small businesses, from hotels and restaurants to ice vendors. It stands to reason that if the IUB members have ruled that the project does benefit the state, it would be in the best interest of the public that this project gets underway within a reasonable timeframe.
Besides denying Iowans employment, any delay unnecessarily imposed by the Board will have the added consequence of impacting the state’s farmers. It is the stated intention of Dakota Access to construct the pipeline within one growing season and to commence land conservation efforts upon its conclusion. To delay the project will mean that construction will span multiple growing seasons, inconveniencing the majority of landowners who have signed voluntary easements and are eager to start the project.
We urge the Iowa Utilities Board to refrain from unnecessary delays of this vital project and allow construction to move forward within a reasonable timeframe. The labor, agricultural, and business members of our Coalition are in agreement with the Board of the PCN that this project brings, and we urge that the Board stand with the thousands of Iowa’s laborers and the majority of landowners who agree that the Dakota Access Pipeline should be constructed on schedule.
Chair, Midwest Alliance for Infrastructure Now (MAIN)