TransCanada accidentally starts building Keystone XL on land it doesn’t own
Job opening at TransCanada: Director of Making Sure That We Actually Have the Right to Build Our Pipeline on This Plot of Land. New position, competitive salary and benefits.
TransCanada contractors building the Keystone XL pipeline mistakenly planned their route and cleared several hundred feet of land through public property they had no right to work on, an Angelina County [Texas] official told FuelFix.
Officials noticed the mistake after protesters set up in trees in Angelina County to oppose work on the pipeline, which is intended to link the Texas coast with Canadian oil sands fields.
TransCanada cleared trees, soil and other foliage from a 50-foot wide strip of land owned by the county without any prior agreement for work there, Angelina County Attorney Ed Jones said.
“I would say it was a surprise to the county,” Jones said.
I would say so! “Hey, Jim, know why those backhoes are ripping up vegetation on that right-of-way?” “No, Tony, I sure don’t. Seems like something we would have heard about, being county employees and all.”
I told TransCanada I owned this and they could build a pipe on it; I am waiting for my check.
To be fair (since we like to be fair), the owner of the property seems to have made a mistake or two himself. Or, rather, the former owner.
The company had negotiated an agreement with a landowner and had paid him for use of the property for Keystone XL, TransCanada spokesman David Dodson said.
But the landowner, Nacogdoches resident Kevin Bradford, had sold a 6-acre parcel of his land to the county in 2009, six months before TransCanada approached him to negotiate payment for work on the property, Jones said. …
“It’s up to us to check things like that and inadvertently we staked out that area,” Dodson said.
It is! It is up to you. That is correct. Were it not, I would happily sell you lots and lots of land on which to build your pipeline, including this bridge connecting Manhattan and Brooklyn.
Rest assured: TransCanada insists this is “an isolated incident.” So was the Titanic.
Philip Bump writes about the news for Gristmill. He also uses Twitter a whole lot.
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