An old Cadillac sits in the garage of Byron "Stix" Steskal in Stuart. Steskal owns property that is in the path of the proposed Keystone XL pipeline.

An old Cadillac sits in the garage of Byron "Stix" Steskal in Stuart. Steskal owns property that is in the path of the proposed Keystone XL pipeline.

 The Niobrara River, Holt county, NE, which the proposed Keystone XL pipeline route would cross.

The Niobrara River, Holt county, NE, which the proposed Keystone XL pipeline route would cross.

 Ron and Jeanne Crumly stand on their family's property near Page, NE. The proposed Keystone XL would cut through their property.   

Ron and Jeanne Crumly stand on their family's property near Page, NE. The proposed Keystone XL would cut through their property.

 

 Michael and Richard Kilmurry speak with each other while working cattle near Atkinson, NE. The proposed Keystone XL pipeline would cut through their family's property.

Michael and Richard Kilmurry speak with each other while working cattle near Atkinson, NE. The proposed Keystone XL pipeline would cut through their family's property.

 Holt county, NE, along the proposed Keystone XL pipeline route. 

Holt county, NE, along the proposed Keystone XL pipeline route. 

 Men gather for breakfast at a cafe in Atkinson, NE. The Keystone XL pipeline would cross about nine miles away from the cafe. 

Men gather for breakfast at a cafe in Atkinson, NE. The Keystone XL pipeline would cross about nine miles away from the cafe. 

 Holt county, NE, along the proposed Keystone XL pipeline route. 

Holt county, NE, along the proposed Keystone XL pipeline route. 

 Jake Crumly, 15, left, father Ryan Crumly, and Zach Crumly hunt for deer on opening weekend on their family's property near Page, NE. The proposed Keystone XL would cut through the property.

Jake Crumly, 15, left, father Ryan Crumly, and Zach Crumly hunt for deer on opening weekend on their family's property near Page, NE. The proposed Keystone XL would cut through the property.

 Holt county, NE, along the proposed Keystone XL pipeline route. 

Holt county, NE, along the proposed Keystone XL pipeline route. 

 Meghan Hammond feeds goats on her and her husband's property where the Keystone XL pipeline would potentially cut through.   

Meghan Hammond feeds goats on her and her husband's property where the Keystone XL pipeline would potentially cut through.

 

 Holt county, NE, along the proposed Keystone XL pipeline route. 

Holt county, NE, along the proposed Keystone XL pipeline route. 

 Rosemary Kilmurry, 93, in her living room near Atkinson, NE. The proposed Keystone XL pipeline would cut through her property.

Rosemary Kilmurry, 93, in her living room near Atkinson, NE. The proposed Keystone XL pipeline would cut through her property.

 Holt county, NE, along the proposed Keystone XL pipeline route. 

Holt county, NE, along the proposed Keystone XL pipeline route. 

 Mike Blocher is nuzzled by one of his horses on his horse ranch near Oakdale, NE. The proposed Keystone XL pipeline would cut through his ranch.

Mike Blocher is nuzzled by one of his horses on his horse ranch near Oakdale, NE. The proposed Keystone XL pipeline would cut through his ranch.

 Holt county, NE, along the proposed Keystone XL pipeline route. 

Holt county, NE, along the proposed Keystone XL pipeline route. 

 Michael Kilmurry works cattle on his family's property near Atkinson, NE. The Keystone XL pipeline would cross several sections on their property.

Michael Kilmurry works cattle on his family's property near Atkinson, NE. The Keystone XL pipeline would cross several sections on their property.

 Holt county, NE, along the proposed Keystone XL pipeline route. 

Holt county, NE, along the proposed Keystone XL pipeline route. 

 Ron and Jeanne Crumly stand on their family's property near Page, NE. The proposed Keystone XL would cut through their property.   

Ron and Jeanne Crumly stand on their family's property near Page, NE. The proposed Keystone XL would cut through their property.

 

 Holt county, NE, along the proposed Keystone XL pipeline route. 

Holt county, NE, along the proposed Keystone XL pipeline route. 

 Kyle Galloway and Meghan Hammond stand on a corn field on their property where the Keystone XL pipeline would potentially cut through.   

Kyle Galloway and Meghan Hammond stand on a corn field on their property where the Keystone XL pipeline would potentially cut through.

 

 The sun sets in Aurora, NE behind the Aventine West Ethanol plant. Aurora is 15 miles from the path of the proposed Keystone XL pipeline.

The sun sets in Aurora, NE behind the Aventine West Ethanol plant. Aurora is 15 miles from the path of the proposed Keystone XL pipeline.

 Jackie Kilmurry stands on 476th Avenue near Atkinson, NE. Kilmurry stands where the proposed Keystone XL pipeline will cut through her family's property.

Jackie Kilmurry stands on 476th Avenue near Atkinson, NE. Kilmurry stands where the proposed Keystone XL pipeline will cut through her family's property.

 The Green Plains Central City ethanol plant in Central City, NE. The town is 13 miles away from the Keystone XL pipeline's proposed path. 

The Green Plains Central City ethanol plant in Central City, NE. The town is 13 miles away from the Keystone XL pipeline's proposed path. 

 Art and Helen Tanderup, in their living room in Neligh, NE.   

Art and Helen Tanderup, in their living room in Neligh, NE.

 

 Land owned by Art and Helen Tanderup, on their property in Neligh, NE. The Keystone XL pipeline would exit their property at the line of trees.

Land owned by Art and Helen Tanderup, on their property in Neligh, NE. The Keystone XL pipeline would exit their property at the line of trees.

 Byron "Stix" Steskal stands on his family property by Eagle Creek, fed by a spring from the Oglala Aquifer, three feet below. The property has been in his family since 1940.   

Byron "Stix" Steskal stands on his family property by Eagle Creek, fed by a spring from the Oglala Aquifer, three feet below. The property has been in his family since 1940.

 

 Late corn is harvested near Fullerton, NE where the proposed Keystone XL pipeline would cut through just a few miles up the road.

Late corn is harvested near Fullerton, NE where the proposed Keystone XL pipeline would cut through just a few miles up the road.

 A funeral takes place at St. Boniface Cemetery in Elgin, NE. The town is eight miles away from the proposed Keystone XL pipeline.

A funeral takes place at St. Boniface Cemetery in Elgin, NE. The town is eight miles away from the proposed Keystone XL pipeline.

 The Kilmurry family's cattle are driven just yards from where the proposed Keystone XL pipeline would cut through the property of the Kilmurry family.

The Kilmurry family's cattle are driven just yards from where the proposed Keystone XL pipeline would cut through the property of the Kilmurry family.

 Kyle Galloway and Meghan Hammond stand on a corn field on their property where the Keystone XL pipeline would potentially cut through.  "The farm has been a lifestyle that our family has chosen to carry on since my Great Great Great Grandfather homesteaded it in the 1860s.  Passed down from generation to generation, we have been taught how important it is to care for the gifts that it has given us.  It has taken generations of education to preserve and care for the land that has so carefully been passed on to us.  This pipeline goes against everything we have tried to accomplish.  The risk of a foreign tar sands pipeline is unmeasurable.  TransCanada can put their check book away, there will never be a dollar amount that would allow us to step aside and give up rights to the next generations.    [The farm has been in our family since] the 1860's.  My parents were on the first route around 2007 or 2008, and after being threatened with Eminent Domain 3 times and consulting with a lawyer who represented folks on Keystone 1--- they signed. They signed, not because they wanted to, but because they thought they were out of options.  They believed everything the land manager said, that they had every permit they needed and they could start condemnation proceedings because they had the right to.   THENNNNN- along came Bold Nebraska and folks and landowners started coming out of the woodwork.  And Bold Nebraska found Domina Law Group out of Omaha to help educate landowners on what our rights are, forming NEAT (Nebraska Easement Action Team, created only to educate represent landowners for better easement terms).  After just ONE meeting we fully understood its not about the money its all about the terms!    Next…. the reroute happens.  Unsure if we’d get our easement back we felt .01 better we weren’t on the reroute…  We were wrong.  The current proposed reroute crosses land about 15 miles SOUTHEAST of the origional route that is owned by my aunt (my mom’s sister, Terri Harrington) who lives in Denver, CO; my family and I farm the land for her.  Since my family was on route one we were more than prepared and up to speed as to what our rights were for the reroute.  I’m not sure how many times TC has contacted her.  She has requested that they only do so through Domina Law.  I don’t have the slightest clue what TC is offering nor do I care.  This has been a long road and we are so grateful to have such a large family to help carry on the fight.  It started with my parents on route one,,, then the reroute happens.  The reroute is 1 mile from the original home section.  3 of my aunts and their familys are now active in the fight. From New York, Virgina, Vermont, and South Dakota- we have family all over in this fight.    And last but not least, through all of this we have been educated and united.  This fight has several issues, from property rights to land and water.  But this fight isn’t about my family or Nebraska, it’s about CLIMATE CHANGE."

Kyle Galloway and Meghan Hammond stand on a corn field on their property where the Keystone XL pipeline would potentially cut through.

"The farm has been a lifestyle that our family has chosen to carry on since my Great Great Great Grandfather homesteaded it in the 1860s.  Passed down from generation to generation, we have been taught how important it is to care for the gifts that it has given us.  It has taken generations of education to preserve and care for the land that has so carefully been passed on to us.

This pipeline goes against everything we have tried to accomplish.  The risk of a foreign tar sands pipeline is unmeasurable.  TransCanada can put their check book away, there will never be a dollar amount that would allow us to step aside and give up rights to the next generations.  

[The farm has been in our family since] the 1860's.

My parents were on the first route around 2007 or 2008, and after being threatened with Eminent Domain 3 times and consulting with a lawyer who represented folks on Keystone 1--- they signed. They signed, not because they wanted to, but because they thought they were out of options.  They believed everything the land manager said, that they had every permit they needed and they could start condemnation proceedings because they had the right to.   THENNNNN- along came Bold Nebraska and folks and landowners started coming out of the woodwork.  And Bold Nebraska found Domina Law Group out of Omaha to help educate landowners on what our rights are, forming NEAT (Nebraska Easement Action Team, created only to educate represent landowners for better easement terms).  After just ONE meeting we fully understood its not about the money its all about the terms!  

Next…. the reroute happens.  Unsure if we’d get our easement back we felt .01 better we weren’t on the reroute…  We were wrong.  The current proposed reroute crosses land about 15 miles SOUTHEAST of the origional route that is owned by my aunt (my mom’s sister, Terri Harrington) who lives in Denver, CO; my family and I farm the land for her.  Since my family was on route one we were more than prepared and up to speed as to what our rights were for the reroute.  I’m not sure how many times TC has contacted her.  She has requested that they only do so through Domina Law.  I don’t have the slightest clue what TC is offering nor do I care.

This has been a long road and we are so grateful to have such a large family to help carry on the fight.  It started with my parents on route one,,, then the reroute happens.  The reroute is 1 mile from the original home section.  3 of my aunts and their familys are now active in the fight. From New York, Virgina, Vermont, and South Dakota- we have family all over in this fight.  

And last but not least, through all of this we have been educated and united.  This fight has several issues, from property rights to land and water.  But this fight isn’t about my family or Nebraska, it’s about CLIMATE CHANGE."

 Mike Blocher burns rubbish on his horse ranch near Oakdale, NE. The proposed Keystone XL pipeline would cut through his ranch.

Mike Blocher burns rubbish on his horse ranch near Oakdale, NE. The proposed Keystone XL pipeline would cut through his ranch.

 The driveway of Art and Helen Tanderup off of 857th Road near Neligh, NE. Neligh is less than six miles from the proposed Keystone XL pipeline.

The driveway of Art and Helen Tanderup off of 857th Road near Neligh, NE. Neligh is less than six miles from the proposed Keystone XL pipeline.

 Early snow, Atkinson, NE. The Keystone XL pipeline would cross about nine miles away. 

Early snow, Atkinson, NE. The Keystone XL pipeline would cross about nine miles away. 

 Snow covers the ground on 857th Road near Neligh, NE. Neligh is less than six miles from the proposed Keystone XL pipeline.

Snow covers the ground on 857th Road near Neligh, NE. Neligh is less than six miles from the proposed Keystone XL pipeline.

 Art and Helen Tanderup, standing on their property in Neligh, NE where the pipeline would enter.  "This farm has been in Helen's family for about 100 years.  It was bare prairie land when Helen's grandfather came here.  He built the house, the barn, and some of the other older buildings.  Helen's folks lived here and Helen grew up here.  We have continued a family tradition of being good stewards of the land and water. We are caretakers of the land; it needs to be protected like one protects a child. This farm means a lot to both use us.  We hope to pass it on to our children and grandchildren.  We would like to see it stay in the family for as long as possible. So many great memories have been made here.  If he pipeline goes in, it will be raping the land.  It is not a natural thing to happen to the land.  Knowing that any day, we might be drinking poisonous water is a dreadful thought.  Our grandchildren, children, pets and ourselves are at risk of being victims to a major break.  The stress of having the pipeline in the ground could be so bad that we have to sell the land and move away, trashing our retirement dreams.   TransCanada has approached us a few times about easements.  After their second offer, we instructed them to contact our Nebraska Easement Action Team lawyers.  They have tried to send us registered offers a couple of times and we have had them returned without opening.  When we have encountered their representatives at pipeline meetings, they always try to set up a meeting where they could discuss the easement.  We always decline. The actual easement that they offered was around $30,000.  This was determined by taking the actual acres of the easement and paying current land price for the easement acres.  On top of that were damage fees for crop loss during construction, etc.  In December, they sent the holdout landowners letters threatening eminent domain.  Right before Christmas, they sent out final offers with a promise of eminent domain early in 2015.  That offer for us went to the NEAT lawyers. They continue to bully landowners around hoping to win additional easements."  - Art Tanderup

Art and Helen Tanderup, standing on their property in Neligh, NE where the pipeline would enter.

"This farm has been in Helen's family for about 100 years.  It was bare prairie land when Helen's grandfather came here.  He built the house, the barn, and some of the other older buildings.  Helen's folks lived here and Helen grew up here.  We have continued a family tradition of being good stewards of the land and water. We are caretakers of the land; it needs to be protected like one protects a child. This farm means a lot to both use us.  We hope to pass it on to our children and grandchildren.  We would like to see it stay in the family for as long as possible. So many great memories have been made here.  If he pipeline goes in, it will be raping the land.  It is not a natural thing to happen to the land.  Knowing that any day, we might be drinking poisonous water is a dreadful thought.  Our grandchildren, children, pets and ourselves are at risk of being victims to a major break.  The stress of having the pipeline in the ground could be so bad that we have to sell the land and move away, trashing our retirement dreams.  
TransCanada has approached us a few times about easements.  After their second offer, we instructed them to contact our Nebraska Easement Action Team lawyers.  They have tried to send us registered offers a couple of times and we have had them returned without opening.  When we have encountered their representatives at pipeline meetings, they always try to set up a meeting where they could discuss the easement.  We always decline. The actual easement that they offered was around $30,000.  This was determined by taking the actual acres of the easement and paying current land price for the easement acres.  On top of that were damage fees for crop loss during construction, etc. 
In December, they sent the holdout landowners letters threatening eminent domain.  Right before Christmas, they sent out final offers with a promise of eminent domain early in 2015.  That offer for us went to the NEAT lawyers. They continue to bully landowners around hoping to win additional easements."

- Art Tanderup

 Wild turkeys cross 469th Avenue between Stuart, NE and the Niobrara River. The pipeline would cross the Niobrara River as well as 50 other crossings of perennial streams. A spill could potentially threaten wildlife and water quality.

Wild turkeys cross 469th Avenue between Stuart, NE and the Niobrara River. The pipeline would cross the Niobrara River as well as 50 other crossings of perennial streams. A spill could potentially threaten wildlife and water quality.

 Bales of hay are covered with snow near Atkinson, NE. Hay is one of the staples of agriculture in the region. 

Bales of hay are covered with snow near Atkinson, NE. Hay is one of the staples of agriculture in the region. 

 A man repairs a sign in York, Nebraska. York, a town of 7,700, is less than five miles east of the proposed pipeline.

A man repairs a sign in York, Nebraska. York, a town of 7,700, is less than five miles east of the proposed pipeline.

 A pivot stands in a blowing snowstorm near Atkinson, NE. Atkinson, a town of 1,200, is nine miles away from the proposed Keystone XL pipeline. The area is on top of the Ogallala Aquifer, with a water table as shallow as three feet in some places. The aquifer is vital to local farms and ranches. Tar sands contain bitumen, which sinks in water. Opponents worry that any leak from the pipeline will be virtually unrecoverable. Bitumen is a suspected carcinogen.  

A pivot stands in a blowing snowstorm near Atkinson, NE. Atkinson, a town of 1,200, is nine miles away from the proposed Keystone XL pipeline. The area is on top of the Ogallala Aquifer, with a water table as shallow as three feet in some places. The aquifer is vital to local farms and ranches. Tar sands contain bitumen, which sinks in water. Opponents worry that any leak from the pipeline will be virtually unrecoverable. Bitumen is a suspected carcinogen.  

 A storage facility during a winter storm, November, 2014 in Atkinson, Nebraska. Atkinson, a town of 1,200, is nine miles away from the proposed Keystone XL pipeline.

A storage facility during a winter storm, November, 2014 in Atkinson, Nebraska. Atkinson, a town of 1,200, is nine miles away from the proposed Keystone XL pipeline.

 A man barbecues ribs during a snowstorm for the opening day of deer hunting season in Atkinson, NE. Atkinson is nine miles from the proposed path of the Keystone XL pipeline.

A man barbecues ribs during a snowstorm for the opening day of deer hunting season in Atkinson, NE. Atkinson is nine miles from the proposed path of the Keystone XL pipeline.

 Wind generators stand near the property of Mike Blocher's home and horse ranch in Oakdale, Nebraska. The proposed Keystone XL pipeline would cut through his property. One of Blocher's concern's is based in experience. While the wind generators were being built, ownership changed numerous times. He said the same thing can happen to the pipeline, that it's ownership could become even more remote than TransCanada is to most property owners opposing the pipeline now.

Wind generators stand near the property of Mike Blocher's home and horse ranch in Oakdale, Nebraska. The proposed Keystone XL pipeline would cut through his property. One of Blocher's concern's is based in experience. While the wind generators were being built, ownership changed numerous times. He said the same thing can happen to the pipeline, that it's ownership could become even more remote than TransCanada is to most property owners opposing the pipeline now.

 A fire burns on a corn farm in Antelope county, along U.S. Route 275.

A fire burns on a corn farm in Antelope county, along U.S. Route 275.

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