RAPID CITY, S.D. (KOTA TV) - The state is inching closer to an agreement regarding the Keystone XL Pipeline in Western South Dakota. Governor Kristi Noem has met with officials from TransCanada.
The multi-billion Keystone XL Pipeline will connect Canadian oil fields with production facilities in the Gulf of Mexico and span Western South Dakota from north to south.
But, it's not without controversy and lots of it. Protests in Morton County, North Dakota cost taxpayers an upwards of $34 million. It's a scenario South Dakota officials want to avoid.
The agreements between the state and TransCanada maps out response plans, details on who pays for what, and how operations can and cannot be conducted.
"I would say it was a very productive meeting. We had pretty frank conversations about preparing for the future and what I was going to require of them. They've got their lawyers looking at what I've proposed to them," South Dakota Governor Kristi Noem said.
Meade, Faulk, and Butte counties are preparing for possible Keystone XL Pipeline protests.
A spokesperson for TransCanada confirmed the meeting with Noem. In a written response, they said:
“We had the pleasure of sitting down with Governor Noem recently to discuss the Keystone XL project and what it means for South Dakota. A variety of topics were discussed and we look forward to continuing this open dialog as we move forward with this project.”