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  • Blue Knight Energy Partners crossing the Canadian River with new pipeline upgrade

    Blue Knight Energy Partners crossing the Canadian River with new pipeline upgrade

    According to court records, BKEP Pipeline LLC. intends to replace sections of pipeline that cross the Canadian River in southern Cleveland County. In May 2017, the Delaware-based pipeline company Blue Knight Energy Partners filed an eminent domain petition for county property located in the Canadian River floodplain. Portions of the buried pipeline became exposed along the river in 2011 following significant rainfall events. Since 2011, other major rainfalls have caused more shifts to the Canadian River’s banks and sandbars, altering the channels.

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    Blue Knight Pipeline first filed suit against a Purcell-based real estate developer, Intervest Development in July 2016. Intervest owns property along the Canadian River bank where sections of pipeline became exposed. BKEP’s motion for an injunction and restraining order against Intervest was dismissed without prejudice on May 4, 2017. About one week later, the eminent domain petitions were filed against Intervest and Cleveland County.

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    The Canadian River has historically been subject to big shifts in its banks and channels following floods and major rainfall events.  It is the longest tributary of the Arkansas River. Because sections of the Canadian River are inhabited by endangered species such as the Interior Least Tern, it is considered an environmentally sensitive area. Local scientific monitoring organizations such as the Oklahoma Biological Survey, and conservationist groups like the Sierra Club, have long advocated for creating parklands and protected spaces along the river banks to safeguard protected species and facilitate public access for responsible recreational uses.

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