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South Dakota’s Legislature Passes “Landowner Bill of Rights” for Carbon Dioxide Pipelines

20th March 2024

On March 7, South Dakota’s legislature approved a package of bills establishing a “Landowner Bill of Rights.” The package includes three bills, SB 201, HB 1185, and HB 1186, aimed at supporting and streamlining large carbon dioxide (CO₂) pipeline projects under development in the Midwest. The CO₂ pipeline projects primarily involve ethanol facilities, including Summit Carbon Solutions, which will transport captured CO₂ across South Dakota to geologic storage sites in North Dakota.  

SB 201 outlines a framework for payments from pipeline companies to the counties in which they will be located, based on the length of the pipeline. For every foot of pipeline, the payments provide $0.50 each to the landowner as tax relief and to the county for general discretion. Some estimate the payments could provide $3.6 million in tax relief to counties counties annually. 

HB 1185 provides a process for landowners to receive notice and compensation for granting pipeline companies access to their land for purposes of surveying and site selection and an avenue for landowners to contest such requests from companies.  

HB 1186 specifies mandated and documented easement standards that apply to pipeline planning in the state for 99 years, including abandonment provisions for pipelines that have been continuously inactive or unpermitted for more than five years. 

These new rules in South Dakota come at a time when CO₂ pipelines are receiving increased scrutiny from the public and from regulatory authorities. A notice of proposed rulemaking updating safety standards for CO₂ pipelines was issued by the Department of Transportation’s Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA) and will soon be available for public comment, following review by the Office of Management and Budget. 

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