North Dakota PSC sets Summit carbon pipeline hearings

Hearings will take place in April, May and June in various cities across North Dakota

PSC Pipeline.jpg
North Dakota Public Service Commissioners Randy Christmann, foreground, and Sheri Haugen-Hoffart participate in a Dec. 21, 2023 hearing in Bismarck. 
Kyle Martin / For the North Dakota Monitor

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BISMARCK — The North Dakota Public Service Commission has set a series of public hearings on the controversial Summit Carbon Solutions pipeline.

The hearings announced Friday, March 22 are:

  • 9 a.m. Monday, April 22, at the Baymont Inn & Suites in Mandan. The hearing could continue the entire week at this location.
  • 9 a.m. Friday, May 24, at the Harry Stern & Ella Stern Cultural Center on the North Dakota State College of Science campus, Wahpeton.
  • 9 a.m. Tuesday, June 4, Our Club in Linton.

The PSC will take public testimony at the hearings, which is the only way to have comments be part of the official record on the case. The PSC can consider public input received outside of the hearings and that input may prompt specific questions to the company during the hearing.

PSC hearings are typically live-streamed through the website

Summit calls its Midwest Carbon Express pipeline project the world’s largest carbon capture and storage project, gathering carbon emissions from ethanol plants for underground storage. It recently grew to more than 50 ethanol plants in five states – Iowa, Minnesota, Nebraska and South Dakota before ending in North Dakota

There is one ethanol plant in North Dakota on the route, Tharaldson Ethanol at Casselton.

The PSC denied Summit’s permit application last year but is giving the Iowa-based company another chance to make its case.

Since the PSC decision, Summit altered its route around landslide areas, and farther away from the city of Bismarck and other changes as it tries again to obtain a pipeline route permit from the PSC.

The pipeline runs through Burleigh, Cass, Dickey, Emmons, Logan, McIntosh, Morton, Oliver, Richland and Sargent counties to underground storage sites in Mercer and Oliver counties.

“Summit Carbon Solutions looks forward to presenting our case in Bismarck this April, and to the additional meetings to hear from landowners across the state. With more than 80% of the pipeline route voluntarily acquired, we believe North Dakotans understand the impact this project will have on the future of agriculture and energy in the state,” Summit said in an emailed statement.

Summit says the pipeline would benefit the ethanol industry and farmers who supply corn to the ethanol plants.

Hearings in 2023 drew opponents concerned about safety, damage to farmland and property values, and other issues and lasted several hours.

Gov. Doug Burgum has been a vocal supporter of carbon capture and the project, which includes oil developer Continental Resources as an investor. Read more