Lawmakers float court challenge to CO2 pipelines

Ramaswamy rallies supporters against projects, criticizes state leaders

Jan. 10, 2024 7:34 pm

Ohio biotech entrepreneur Vivek Ramaswamy speaks to attendees at a rally he held Wednesday at the Iowa Capitol to oppose carbon dioxide capture pipelines. (Caleb McCullough/Gazette-Lee Des Moines Bureau)
Ohio biotech entrepreneur Vivek Ramaswamy speaks to attendees at a rally he held Wednesday at the Iowa Capitol to oppose carbon dioxide capture pipelines. (Caleb McCullough/Gazette-Lee Des Moines Bureau)

DES MOINES — Iowa Republican lawmakers seemed resigned Wednesday to the likelihood that restrictions on the eminent domain authority of carbon capture pipeline companies won’t become law any time soon, while GOP presidential candidate Vivek Ramaswamy accused the state’s leaders of inaction on the issue.

In a pair of rallies focused on carbon capture pipelines, the state legislative session and presidential election campaigns merged to talk about the projects supporters say would boost ethanol profits and sequester greenhouse gases.

Iowa Rep. Steve Holt, R-Denison, announced he had switched his presidential endorsement from Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis to Ramaswamy. Holt said it was Ramaswamy’s message and vision that led him to make the change.

“I think the world of Gov. DeSantis, I think the world of his family and his campaign,” Holt said. “He’s the second-best governor in the (country) behind Gov. (Kim) Reynolds. It is Vivek’s message that resonates with me, and the way he says it.”

Ramaswamy called the CO2 pipelines part of the “climate change agenda” and said there is no need to reduce emissions. He said allowing eminent domain that would let the developers force easements would set a dangerous precedent. Read more