Right now in Texas, a foreign corporation, TransCanada, is using our government’s 5th Amendment right of eminent domain to confiscate private land belonging to Americans, to build a massive oil pipeline so TransCanada can ship oil from the Gulf of Mexico to non-Americans around the world. Oil, by the way, that will accelerate our planet’s plunge into global warming-induced catastrophe. So the question is, “Why?
In Nevada, nothing can get folks riled up faster than messing with their guns, their water rights, or their property rights. It’s absolutely unconscionable that TransCanada is trying to confiscate land from American citizens for its pipeline that hasn’t yet been approved. They’re attempting top use eminent domain to sue landowners who don’t want their dirty tar sands sludge pipeline on their property. The arrogance of TransCanada is shocking, even for an oil company.
Even while the White House has delayed the process for assessing a required permit for the Keystone XL, TransCanada is suing landowners who won’t sell their land in its preferred pipeline path.
That path includes the 600 acre working-farm that Julia Trigg Crawford’s grandfather bought in 1948, along the southern banks of the Red River on the Texas, Oklahoma border; just East of where the Bois d’Arc Creek — which waters the farm — runs into the Red. Even though TransCanada doesn’t have a presidential permit to build the pipeline, the company has been threatening to confiscate properties like this from people like Julia Trigg; using eminent domain if the landowners don’t immediately accept the foreign corporation’s offer to buy an easement for the path of its pipeline.
It’s wrong for TransCanada to expect landowners to accept permanent damage to their land for the Keystone XL pipeline, or possible oil spills in the rivers and creeks they rely on. It’s doubly wrong to threaten these landowners and force them to comply for a pipeline that the company doesn’t even have permission to build!
Tell TransCanada: Stop using eminent domain to confiscate private property for a pipeline that hasn’t even been approved yet. Click here to sign the petition.
Under eminent domain, the government can force landowners to accept monetary payment for the use of their land for certain public-good projects like highways and railroads. This is a FOREIGN corporation who will take its profits at our expense … and that is not in the public interest of the ordinary citizens of this country!
Of course, TransCanada’s massive fuse to the carbon bomb of the tar sands shouldn’t qualify as one of these projects — it does great harm and only helps the profits of a foreign corporation. But regardless, the company doesn’t even have the permit to build it — in fact the White House just put a likely year-long hold on pipeline development after a massive grassroots backlash from environmentalists. But that hasn’t stopped TransCanada.
According to an article last month in The New York Times, the company has at least 34 eminent domain actions against landowners in Texas, and 22 in South Dakota.1 And their threats to landowners in Nebraska2 helped spark massive public opposition and a special legislative session that were key in the decision to consider a different route.
Many of these landowners are being sued by the company, and told that if they don’t take the small monetary offering — sometimes less than $10,000 in exchange for the permanent damage to their land, and huge risk of spills — their land will be condemned and TransCanada will seize the easement.
Many landowners, like Julia Trigg, are fighting back and doing everything they can to oppose TransCanada’s land grab.
Let’s make sure that TransCanada is being called out for these reprehensible tactics, and that landowners who are taking on this foreign corporation know that we’ve got their backs.
Tell TransCanada: It’s beyond arrogant to confiscate land for a pipeline that hasn’t even been approved yet. Stop using eminent domain to sue landowners who don’t want a dirty pipeline on their property. Click here to automatically sign the petition.