After nearly three years of fighting against the Dakota Access pipeline, Iowa landowners finally had the chance to make their case to the state’s highest court.
Attorneys for the landowners argued to the Iowa Supreme Court that the pipeline was wrongly approved by state leaders and unconstitutionally put in the ground.
The pipeline starts in North Dakota angles southeast across South Dakota, and it stretches from the northwest to the south-east corners of the state, into Illinois.
The decision on whether to keep the pipes in the ground or take them out is in the hands of the Iowa Supreme Court justices.
Iowa landowners aren’t giving up. Their bold message remains the same. They want the Dakota pipeline out and their land back.
The Iowa Supreme Court heard arguments from both sides on whether the Iowa Utilities Board gave legal permits to build the pipeline, despite landowners saying ‘no’.
“This state has no oil wells. It has no oil refineries, This pipeline has no on ramps; it has no off ramps in this state. And as it crosses this state that it is the test Iowans have no direct use,” said Wallace Taylor, the lawyer for the Sierra Club.
“Doesn’t this approach that you are advocating for a result in discrimination against interstate commerce and would present problems under doorman clause,” said Supreme Court Justice Edward M. Mansfield.
Lawyers for Dakota Access argue that the project is a public necessity and anyone in Iowa can use it. They believe there was nothing illegal in the way eminent domain was used.
Dick Lamb owns a farm in Boone County. He says a mile of the pipeline runs through his property, and he’s already seeing the negative effects.
“What they have done to our farm is incredible. The tile no longer works right. The land isn’t sloped right,” Lambs said.