Critics of TransCanada's Keystone XL Pipeline proposal are concerned about potential threats to the Ogallala aquifer and endangered species.

LINCOLN - Some Nebraska landowners and tribal nations are committed to fight TransCanada's proposed Keystone XL Pipeline, after the Nebraska Supreme Court's recent decision in favor of the Mainline Alternative route through Nebraska.

Art Tanderup, who owns land along the proposed route, says landowners affected by the court's ruling were denied due process.

"And it's not in Nebraska's interest, it's not in the national interest, for a foreign corporation to be granted the power of eminent domain on U.S. citizens to take away their land," he states.

Oil and gas groups welcomed the high court's decision, calling it another important step toward building critical energy infrastructure.

The 1,100 mile crude oil pipeline from Hardisty, Alberta, to Steele City, Neb., would deliver crude oil from Canada to Gulf Coast refineries.

Critics point out that some 83 miles of the alternative route have not undergone environmental, property rights or cultural reviews, and say it was approved without proper notice to Ponca Tribe members.

Ken Winston, an attorney with the Sierra Club Nebraska chapter, says the pipeline would put the Ogallala Aquifer and endangered species at risk.

"The Sierra Club will continue to oppose the Keystone XL Pipeline on behalf of millions of Americans who care about clean air, clean water, protecting the land from pollution and conserving resources so our children can inherit a world they can live in," Winston states.

Jane Kleeb, founder of the advocacy group Bold Nebraska, says this is not the end of the line for Keystone XL opponents, pointing to three federal lawsuits still in play.

She maintains property rights of farmers and sovereign rights of tribal nations should trump what she calls a land grab by the oil industry.

"TransCanada continues to grease the wheels with our elected officials, getting whatever they want," she says. "And it is the people that have done the work to stop this pipeline, and it will continue to be the people to make sure that this pipeline is never built."

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