Farm Bureau members are witnessing a third and final year of regulatory agency ordered observation, repair and remediation along several major pipeline construction routes that crisscross the landscape in northern and southern Ohio.
Recently, there have been overtures by some energy service providers to pay landowners an additional “settlement” payment if they agree that all repair work is done, and the service provider agrees to stay off the property.
“What landowners are essentially signing is a release,” said Dale Arnold, OFBF director of energy policy. “They are essentially saying from that point on, any remediation or repair needed on your property as it relates to our pipeline project is the landowner’s responsibility.”
Arnold said some landowners who neglected to read the fine print of the settlement offer have been stuck paying a bill in the range of tens of thousands of dollars to fix recently discovered pipeline-related repair issues.
“When landowners take that payment in the third year, and sign that release, it becomes the landowner’s responsibility,” Arnold said. He advises landowners approached with such an agreement to contact their legal counsel to review it thoroughly before making a decision.
In other pipeline news
The Buckeye Xpress pipeline project in southern Ohio will be engaged in construction this spring, and upgrades in and around natural gas storage fields will be happening in counties in northeast Ohio as well.