New Study Finds Oil Pipelines Adversely Affect Property Values

We’re all well aware of the adverse health and environmental consequences stemming from fossil fuel extraction, transportation and consumption. On Monday, for instance, we highlighted a report by Raw Story entitled, “The 10 most toxic ingredients used by fossil fuel industries.”  To put it mildly, it’s not a pretty picture.

Now, a new report by CRED (Conversations for Responsible Economic Development) examines yet another negative consequence stemming from fossil fuels – namely, their adverse impact on property values. Specifically, this study looks at the potential real estate risk from a $5.4 billion proposal by Kinder Morgan Canada to build a new 890,000-barrels-per-day pipeline alongside its existing 1,150-kilometer Trans Mountain pipeline system between Edmonton, Alberta and Burnaby, British Columbia. A few key points from the study make clear that this is yet another strong reason why we should move off of fossil fuels and towards clean energy as quickly as possible.

  • Pipeline spills (shown via a number of case studies, in MD, TX, OH, the Gulf of Mexico region, etc.) – or even the possibility of pipeline spills – has been shown time and again to adversely impact property values. “In several documented cases, directly impacted properties lost 10-40% of their value.”
  • “The reputational impacts alone are significant – properties nearby spills will usually see a 5-8% reduction in value”
  • Groundwater contamination will lead to more permanent value losses, particularly where homes rely on well water”
  • “Even if houses aren’t directly damaged, the stigma and perception that the next incident could affect them is significant. Another analysis from Western Washington University notes that a home’s value ‘is negatively and significantly affected by proximity to a petroleum pipeline.’”






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