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GEUST COLUMN

RICL hurting Iowans ‘for the public good’

December 19, 2014
Farm News

Iowans might ask the question, how will they lose if the Rock Island Clean Lines project gets approved by the Iowa Utilities Board?

Well, here are a few things that will affect the landowner and others bordering the project.

For my family, this line will travel through the north one-third of our farm not following a fence row, but smack dab through the field comprising nine acres of land.

The foundations are 50 feet in the ground to support the tallest towers which are 150 feet.

How will the construction impact the fertility of the soils along with our pattern tiling in and around the easement that will be compacted by heavy machinery and drill tailings?

Sadly, this system does not benefit the people of Iowa as the electrical power is being transmitted 375 miles across the state and into Illinois where it will be converted back to A/C power and distributed to eastern metropolitan cities.

No, this is a project that may appear to be for the common good, but it is going to financially benefit a small number of people in the grand scheme, while it injures the good people of Iowa in its wake.

Fortunately, a large number of landowners have understood the danger of supporting this venture and have expressed their objections to the Iowa Utilities Board who will rule on this sometime in the near future.

RICL has only been able to acquire 12.5 to 13 percent of the total number of easements in Iowa over the last 15 months that it needs to move the project forward.

Everyone needs to really understand the impact this is going to have not only on those of us in the corridor, but around it.

It is very important that landowners do not sign voluntary easement rights to Rock Island Clean Line.

Rick Gergesma is a farmer in Pleasant Valley Township, Grundy County.

 
 

 

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