USA: cement company seeks to stop pipeline

USA: cement company seeks to stop pipeline
Published: 19 August 2013


Essroc Cement Corp is suing to stop a natural gas pipeline from running through its Lawrence County property. Nazareth-based Essroc Cement Corp filed the lawsuit last Tuesday to stop the line, which is slated to go through the company’s land in North Beaver Township.

The lawsuit names three defendants: NiSource Corporate Services and Pennant Midstream LLC, both of Columbus, and Houston-based Hillcorp Energy, which has a local office in New Castle.

According to the lawsuit, Essroc owns approximately 1700 acres in North Beaver and also holds the subsurface rights to more than 2000 acres of adjoining or nearby property. The company and its predecessors have been extracting and processing limestone and other minerals in and around the Bessemer area for more than 100 years, the lawsuit says. Essroc is trying to sell the plant and land, the lawsuit says.

The suit alleges that the construction of the natural gas pipeline will wrongfully prevent Essroc from extracting “tens of millions of dollars” worth of minerals from the property.

The “NiSource Pipeline” would run 20ft below the surface and through the sand, shale or clay that Essroc has exclusive rights to, and the pipeline would be trespassing on the property, the lawsuit says.
NiSource filed for right-of-way agreements with six surface property owners, but Essroc owns the subsurface rights.

Essroc is asking the court to issue an order that declares Essroc has exclusive rights to the property and to grant a permanent injunction to stop the pipeline from running through its property. Essroc is asking for a jury trial.