Permission revoked by County for pipeline to cross under roadways

Anticipate more work stoppages along the route of the Kinder Morgan pipeline through Hays County.

The commissioners court on Tuesday voted to revoke permission for the energy giant to cross any roads in the county. The unanimous vote came after a lengthy executive session and the motion was made by Pct. 3 Commissioner Lon Shell.

It was in Blanco County that contractors on the Permian Highway Pipeline (PHP) hit a karst feature on March 28 while attempting a horizontal bore under the Blanco River. That resulted in the spillage of thousands of gallons of drilling mud and drilling fluid into the Trinity Aquifer.

At least two nearby water wells were polluted and subsequent tests on well water turned up reported carcinogens, though Kinder Morgan argued that many are “naturally occurring” in the area.

The order would be in effect, Shell’s motion said, “until such time Kinder Morgan has complied with the Railroad Commission’s Notice of Violation.” The motion asked for staff “to develop a policy” concerning requiring the company to employ ground-penetrating radar to look for karst features as well as the presence of water wells in the immediate vicinity.

“Kinder Morgan would know exactly what is going to be asked of them in the future.”

How many roadways the project would have to cross within the county was not
discussed.

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