The leaders of a state environmental group will be working toward new causes in 2016 after last year’s apparent victory over the Keystone XL oil pipeline project for which President Obama denied a permit.
BOLD Nebraska executive director Jane Kleeb says they’ll focus on getting eminent domain legislation passed by the Unicameral to strengthen the rights of Nebraska landowners.
“Whether you’re an oil pipeline company or any type of company that wants to take land for private gain, that is against the law,” Kleeb says. “We’re really trying to get that bill passed. BOLD Nebraska is actually going to be expanding into a national model. We’re creating the BOLD Alliance to go into other red and rural states to fight these risky fossil fuel projects.”
Kleeb says the group will also be working to halt the Bakken oil pipeline project that’s proposed for North and South Dakota, Iowa and Illinois.
“We are not idiots,” she says. “We see what TransCanada is doing with what’s called their Upland Project. They’re trying to get a small pipeline over the border from North Dakota up to Canada, they say to bring Bakken oil up there, but we essentially know they would connect that project to the Baaken project.”
Kleeb says BOLD will fight for private property rights in several states.
“You can work your entire life to strive to make enough money to actually buy your property and then a foreign corporation or an American corporation can come in and say, ‘We’re going to do what we want with your land, too bad, we’re going to take it through eminent domain,'” Kleeb says. “That’s not American. That’s not how we do business in America. It’s not an American value.”
She says they’ll also work to support locally-run, clean energy projects.
By Jerry Oster, WNAX, Yankton