Environmental activist to speak

Ed Fallon, an environmental activist and former Iowa state legislator who is walking the Iowa stretch of the proposed Bakken oil pipeline to speak out against the project, will speak at Northwestern College at 7 p.m. on Thursday, April 16, in the Fireside Room of the Ramaker Center. The purpose of the meeting, which is open to the public, is for Fallon to share his concerns about the pipeline and to hear what area residents think.

Fallon began the 400-mile walk on March 2 south of Montrose in southeastern Iowa. He will complete the walk on Wednesday, April 22, Earth Day, at the Big Sioux River west of Inwood in Lyon County.

In a news release before the walk, Fallon said he opposes the pipeline because of his concerns about water quality, climate change, private property rights and eminent domain. “While this pipeline is wrong because government shouldn’t take people’s land so an oil company can get rich, it’s also wrong because it deepens our dependence on fossil fuel and slows the expansion of renewables,” he said. “And renewable energy is doing a lot more for Iowa’s economy than oil ever will.”

Fallon served in the Iowa House from 1993 to 2006 before running for governor and U.S. Congress. Since 2009, he has hosted the Fallon Forum, a talk show aired on radio stations in Des Moines, Ames and Postville. He organized the Great March for Climate Action, an eight-month walk from Los Angeles to Washington, D.C., last year.

The proposed Dakota Access Pipeline, to be developed by Dallas-based Energy Transfer Partners, would cover 1,134 miles from the Bakken oil fields of North Dakota to Patoka, Ill. It would transport approximately 450,000 barrels of crude oil a day.