SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (KELO) — A request to the South Dakota Public Utilities Commission (PUC) to delay any final action on a carbon dioxide pipeline application will delay any action by Minnehaha County on a moratorium on CO2 pipelines and similar.

Tyler Klatt, the assistant commission administrator officer, presented a draft moratorium ordinance at Tuesday’s county commissioners meeting. Klatt said there were only three commissioners at the meeting so no action was taken but since Summit Carbon Solutions applied for a delay, the county will put the moratorium on the June 21 meeting agenda.

“The PUC meets May 24 and we want to wait until after that,” Klatt said.

The moratorium would give the county time to consider any regulations that would cover pipelines, including CO2 pipelines. Existing county ordinances do not cover transmission pipelines.

If the PUC grants the delay rather than sticking with a fall decision, the county would then be able to adjust any moratorium it would approve. The draft moratorium ordinance says it would be in place for 12 months.

The draft moratorium says “in the interest of public health, safety, and general welfare, to adopt temporary zoning ordinances for a reasonable period of time in order to study, identify, and consider necessary land use regulations; and NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT ORDAINED that the Minnehaha County Board of Commissioners hereby authorize a twelve-month moratorium on the issuance of any permits and/or approval of land uses for transmission pipelines.”

The proposed Summit Carbon Solution pipeline is about 2,000 miles and about 469 miles would travel through South Dakota.

Proponents say the pipeline that would capture CO2 at ethanol plants which would reduce the plants’ carbon score and allow them to sell ethanol in low carbon states. That is one economic benefit along with the increased tax base in a county, proponents say.

Opponents say if the CO2 pipeline leaks or breaks it would be a major health and safety concern. Opponents also say the project would benefit investors more than landowners and ethanol plants, including foreign investors.

Lincoln County did discuss at its May 10 meeting the county’s ability to affect the proposed pipeline. The county did apply for party status on the permit which means it would be an intervener and have the same legal rights to discovery and other material and could present material to the PUC.

Commissioner Joel Arends suggested Lincoln County be the host of a public forum in which proponents of the pipeline could speak as well as those with concerns or opposed.