For what it’s worth, when Kinder Morgan replaced a major pipeline that crosses better than 1/2 a mile of our land 4 years ago, we required the the permanent easement of 30 feet one year after the completion of the replacement, as established by eminent domain rules when the line was first put in some 50 years prior. If they have to come back for any reason, they will have to pay for any workspace they need that exceeds 15 feet on either side of the line.
Just out of curiosity, was the Kinder Morgan line a natural gas line or NGL line?
When they replaced it 4 years ago, it went from south to north and was for natural gas. Since then, they have reversed the flow, increased the pressure, and changed the product. I think it is NGL but am not sure.
While talking about a pipeline easement with my attorney, he told me about some subterfuge Kinder Morgan had pulled. Kinder Morgan wanted to build a NGLs pipeline, but saw it as an expensive, difficult and uncertain undertaking, as FERC eminent domain laws do not apply to NGLs. They would have to do it the old fashioned way; they'd have to pay market value to landowners for the right-of-way. Not wanting to do this, they found an old natural gas line that would serve their purpose and refurbished it, asking for and receiving tax money to help pay for it for good measure. After doing this, they waited a period of time, they then announced they were going to change the product flowing through the line. It sounds like this is the line that crosses your land.
Joe, the timing sounds about right for the line through our place. We were told that the line had to be upgraded due to the fact the the campground on our northern border added so many “residences” that the line had to be upgraded. After years of talking about it, we were told that FERC gave a deadline requiring that the work be completed in the Spring of 2014. It worked out well for us as we had several years to learn from others, including many on this site, what we should ask for. We told the land man that if they didn’t like our terms they could go through Eminent Domain which they had no time to do. We made out extremely well. Throughout the 30+ years that we have owned the property, Kinder Morgan has been great to work with and very responsive to any request that we made, including marking their right of way every Spring before we planted Christmas trees so there would be no question re encroachment. I even got a ride in their helicopter!
Glad you had a good experience! I've found that you can usually do well with a pipeline company if you state clearly what you want, are willing to fight for it and have a good attorney. Rerouting a pipeline is hugely expensive and an eminent domain action can be time (and money) consuming. Easier for them to write a check. We had that fight with a big pipeline project a few years ago, and in testimony they revealed the cost for delays. In our case, just under $1 million in lost revenue, $1.5 to keep construction crews idle, per day.