The Edmond Sun

Local News

July 14, 2012

Lawsuit threatens Cushing-to-Gulf pipeline

EDMOND — Oklahoma environmental activists and an east Texas governmental body have filed a complaint seeking an injunction against the TransCanada Cushing-to-Gulf pipeline.

The Sierra Club, Clean Energy Future Oklahoma and the East Texas Sub Regional Planning Commission filed the 44-page complaint on June 29 in U.S. District Court for the Western District of Oklahoma, according to court records. Defendants are several U.S. Army Corps of Engineers officials.

The action for declaratory and injunctive relief challenges the Corps of Engineers’ alleged improper issuance of Nationwide Permit 12 for the dredge and fill of U.S. waters pursuant to Section 404 of the Clean Water Act, and for the agency’s alleged improper use of the permit for the pipeline.

TransCanada’s Gulf Coast Project, the southern leg of the Keystone pipeline, is a roughly 485-mile, 36-inch crude oil pipeline beginning in Cushing and extending south to the Houston, Texas, area city of Nederland.

According to the complaint the pipeline involves more than a thousand water crossings and the permanent destruction of more than 130 acres of high-quality forested wetlands.

The complaint alleges the Corps of Engineers’ issuance of the permit was contrary to the Administrative Procedure Act and “was arbitrary and capricious, an abuse of discretion or otherwise not in accordance with the law.”

The pipeline “will cause more than minimal adverse effects” and there is no limit to the number of times a utility line can use the permit, “nor is there a limit to the total number of acres of wetlands that a utility line can destroy,” the complaint states.

It also alleges that the Corps of Engineers “failed to take the required hard look at the environmental impacts” and its finding of no significant impacts and decision not to prepare an environmental impact statement for the permit were contrary to the National Environmental Policy Act.

The plaintiffs seek preliminary and permanent injunctions against the project proceeding under the permit.

U.S. crude oil production has been growing significantly in Oklahoma, Texas, North Dakota and Montana, according to TransCanada, the company overseeing the project. Producers do not have access to enough pipeline capacity to move this production to the large refining market along the U.S. Gulf Coast.

Construction is expected to begin in mid-2012, pending necessary permits for specific construction activities, with an anticipated in-service date of mid-to-late 2013, according to TransCanada. Contracts have been awarded to Michels Corporation for the Cushing to Polk County, Texas, portion and to Sunland Construction for the Polk County to Nederland portion.

Oklahoma is hoping for an economic boost from the pipeline, which will serve the Gulf Coast marketplace. Producers do not have enough pipeline capacity to move the oil backlog in Cushing to the large refining market along the Gulf Coast.

TransCanada says the full Keystone XL Pipeline will create about 20,000 construction and manufacturing jobs, which will generate more than $585 million in new tax revenue for states and communities along the pipeline route. TransCanada will also pay more than $5.2 billion in property taxes during the pipeline’s operating life.

The defendants have not yet responded to the complaint in court filings.

marks@edmondsun.com | 341-2121, ext. 108

1
Text Only
Local News
  • MS_prisons 1.JPG DOC action could save $36.8 million annually

    The Oklahoma Department of Corrections expects to avert more than 2,100 offenders by 2021 saving more than $36.8 million annually, an audit states.
    Tuesday, State Auditor and Inspector Gary Jones  released the results of a performance audit of the DOC that was requested by Gov. Mary Fallin. The audit for the period July 1, 2007 through June 30, 2013, distinctly focused on governance, financial management and capacity management.
    Audit recommendations included:

    July 30, 2014 2 Photos

  • food bank.jpg Regional Food Bank receives donation

    At a special celebration event Wednesday, Walmart and the Walmart Foundation announced that over the last fiscal year they gave more than $30 million in cash and in-kind contributions to charitable organizations throughout Oklahoma. Additionally, the retailer and its Foundation have partnered with local food banks to provide more than 15 million pounds of food to residents.

    July 30, 2014 1 Photo

  • Man allegedly assaults officer on Tinker AFB

    A metro man faces an assault complaint after he allegedly nearly struck a federal officer with a vehicle during a pursuit that began as a traffic stop on Tinker Air Force Base, court records show.
    Sanford C. Coats, U.S. attorney for the Western District of Oklahoma, said Wednesday a criminal complaint was unsealed charging James Williams, 60, of Del City, with assaulting a federal officer with a dangerous weapon.

    July 30, 2014

  • NAMI classes begin in September

    NAMI Edmond North-OKC, the local organization of the National Alliance on Mental Illness, will offer its Family-to-Family Education Program beginning Sept. 2. It will contine Sept. 4 and 8-9. Classes will be at Crossings Community Church, Quail Springs United Methodist Church, Francis Tuttle Technology Center (Portland campus), Tinker AFB Chapel and the Thunderbird Club House in Norman.
    NAMI Family-to-Family is a free 12-session education program for family caregivers of adults living with mental illness. The sessions are offered once a week for a few hours each.

    July 30, 2014

  • drugs 1.jpg K9 hot on drug trail

    An Oklahoma County deputy and his K9 partner have logged another impressive drug seizure, records show.
    Oklahoma County Sheriff’s Office spokesman Mark Myers said Monday a deputy noticed a car weaving and straddling lanes on I-40 near the Meridian Avenue exit. Myers said the deputy stopped the vehicle and spoke with the two people inside.
    The driver and passenger told conflicting stories about their trip, Myers said. The deputy also smelled marijuana inside of the vehicle, Myers said.

    July 30, 2014 3 Photos

  • City spends $1.7 million on ITS

    Public safety will benefit by the Intelligent Transportation System with its implementation by the City of Edmond, said Steve Commons, assistant city manager.
    More vehicles are added to traffic volume as Edmond’s population grows. ITS connects all of the city’s traffic signals in order to improve traffic flow in present time with greater efficiency, Commons said Wednesday.
    “Some of that can be done through computer automation that tracks how traffic is changing,” Commons said.

    July 30, 2014

  • clinic 1.jpg Edmond church to host free eye clinic

    An Edmond church and Feed the Children are partnering to provide a free eye clinic.
    Individuals will be able to receive a free vision test and free prescription eye glasses from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Aug. 9 at the Waterloo Road Baptist Church, 3100 E. Waterloo Road. All ages are welcome and registration is not required.

    July 29, 2014 2 Photos

  • weather 1.jpg July could be coolest in weather record books

    With chances for soaking rains and unseasonably cool temperatures becoming frequent, a weather expert is increasingly convinced Oklahoma will end up with a historic July.
    At mid-afternoon Tuesday, the National Weather Service forecast for Edmond called for the high Wednesday to be near 73 with a 90 percent chance of heavy rain, followed by the high Thursday near 78 with a 30 percent chance of showers.
    Highs are expected to remain in the 80s into Monday.

    July 29, 2014 3 Photos

  • Downtown Master Plan accepted by council

    The 2014 Downtown Master Plan Study was accepted by a 3-0 vote Tuesday evening by the Edmond City Council.
    Fort Worth-based consulting group Freese and Nichols presented their final update to the 1998 Downtown Master Plan. The city hired the group at a cost of $300,000 to make recommendations for future development of Broadway in the central business district.
    “There are clearly some short-term (parking) options that we feel should move forward,” said Cody Richardson, of Freese and Nichols consultants of Fort Worth. “Better signage at existing parking lots.”

    July 29, 2014

  • UCO forensic volunteer wants to aid more agencies

    A four-person group of forensic investigators who volunteer their time to help smaller Oklahoma police departments isn’t enough to meet demand, a member said.
    Kama King, who recently completed her graduate research and will be a member of the faculty at the University of Central Oklahoma’s Forensic Science Institute, said outside of full-time jobs, members of the group volunteer to assist these agencies.
    As her career progresses, King hopes to help establish a permanently funded organization available to any agency in the state to assist in remains recovery as well as related training.

    July 29, 2014

Featured Ads
NDN Video
Heartwarming 'Batkid Begins' Documentary is Tear-Jerker Orlando Bloom 'Takes a Swing' at Justin Bieber In Ibiza Pitch Invading Morons Cause Chaos - @TheBuzzeronFOX Sadie Doesn't Want Her Brother to Grow Up "Maxim" Hotness! See Jessica Alba's Sizzling Spread Two women barely avoid being hit by train Broken Water Main Floods UCLA Orlando Bloom and Justin Bieber Reportedly Came To Blows In Ibiza Meet the Man Behind Dumb Starbucks Chris Pratt Adorably Surprises Kids at a 'Guardians of the Galaxy' Screening NOW TRENDING: Peyton Manning dancing at practice "The Bachelorette" Makes Her Decision Thieves pick the wrong gas station to rob Golden Sisters on '50 Shades' trailer: 'Look At That Chest!' Staten Island Man's Emotional Dunk Over NYPD Car - @TheBuzzeronFOX GMA: Dog passes out from excitment to see owner Baseball Hall of Famers Inducted 'Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 1' Sneak Peek Florida Keys Webcam Captures Turtles Hatching Morgan Freeman Sucks Down Helium on 'Tonight Show'
Poll

The runoff race for the 5th District congressional seat is set for Aug. 26. If the voting were today, which candidate would you support?

Al McAffrey
Tom Guild
Undecided
     View Results