PIERRE, S.D. (KELO) — A lawyer for a proposed carbon-dioxide pipeline in South Dakota has asked state regulators for an April hearing on whether it can go ahead.

But lawyers for landowners who oppose the project’s potential route have argued April is too soon because too many unresolved right-of-way disputes remain.

The South Dakota Public Utilities Commission could set a schedule at a meeting Friday afternoon.

The three commissioners are considering whether to grant a state permit to SCS Carbon Transport, a subsidiary of Summit Carbon Solutions.

SCS wants to build a collection network serving five states, with the CO2 to be deposited in central North Dakota.

Attorney Brett Koenecke of Pierre filed the company’s request for the April hearing. He followed up with a request for a protective order for use by the parties during the discovery phase of the docket proceeding.

“Should there be discovery disputes of a confidentiality nature during the pendency of the pre-hearing discovery and testimony filing stages, it will be difficult to get them resolved in time to keep the schedule,” Koenecke wrote.

But landowners’ attorneys Brian Jorde of Omaha, Nebraska, and Ryan Cwach of Yankton responded the docket is “nowhere near” the point when scheduling discussions should start.

“Summit has not obtained even 50% of the easements it desires in South Dakota and no proceedings, and no scheduling should move forward until it has acquired at least 90% of the South Dakota easements it desires,” Jorde and Cwach wrote.

The commissioners meanwhile plan a series of three public-input meetings next week in southeastern South Dakota on a second proposed CO2 pipeline sought by Navigator Heartland Greenway, LLC.

Commissioners and staff will go to Canton Performing Arts Center on Monday, November 21, at 5:30 p.m. CT. On Tuesday, they’ll be in Flandreau at the William J. Janklow Community Center at 11:30 a.m. CT and then in Sioux Falls at the Ramkota Conference Center (3200 W. Maple Street) at 5:30 p.m. CT.