NEXUS Pipeline Developers Take Uncooperative Landowners to Court
By Joanna Richards
A conflict between the developers of a natural gas pipeline and residents who oppose it has landed in a Medina County courtroom today, brought by NEXUS Gas Transmission.
Many property owners along the proposed 250-mile pipeline route have given NEXUS permission to survey their land.
The company says it’s evaluating geology and potential environmental effects as it narrows down a formal route proposal.
NEXUS says if property owners cooperate, it can lessen the impacts to their land if the pipeline ends up running through it.
But the company also says it has a legal right to survey private property, even over owner objections. A Medina County judge is considering the company’s request to compel three people and one business to let NEXUS survey their land.
Pipeline opponents say they’re worried about safety, health and environmental risks.
The proposed three-foot-wide underground line would run from Columbiana County to Ontario.
The federal review process includes gathering community feedback, but can also allow for eminent domain – forcible taking of private property when it’s deemed a project has a larger public benefit.
A spokesman for the judge said he plans to issue a ruling by early next week.