WINONA — While the Keystone XL Pipeline has fueled a bitter battle among industry, landowners, and environmentalists across East Texas, people living alongside the ruckus in Smith County voiced indifference Tuesday, to the pipeline and the protesters it has drawn from across the country. That’s according to KETK and the Longview News-Journal. The construction has sparked protests in Franklin, Wood, and Nacogdoches counties and drew national attention when actress Darryl Hannah was arrested in Wood County. Three people, all from out of state, were arrested Monday outside Winona after they crawled inside a section of pipe to stall work on the $7 billion project that will carry crude oil from Canada to the Texas coast.
But people who live east of Winona, near where the arrests took place, watched the events with detachment and disinterest. Ross Prince said he’s lived in his house on County Road 363 for 33 years, and he voiced support for the pipeline. Linda Lane, who also lives on CR 363, said neighbors had to tell her people had been arrested less than a mile up the road. The only consistent complaint from homeowners along CR 363 was about the out-of-town protesters.
Glen Scott David Collins, 25, of New Orleans; Matthew Aaron Almonte, 21 of Lithia, Fla.; and Isabel Indingo Brooks, 20, of Portland, Ore., were the three arrested Monday, accused of sitting in a piece of the pipeline until removed by authorities. All three out-of-state protesters had been released Tuesday from the Smith County Jail. “I don’t approve of them coming here to protest,” Prince said. Not everyone disapproved, though. Tina Osby voiced gratitude to the pipeline opponents. She said they had made her aware of potential problems with the pipeline so near her home.