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Add your name to these public comments to be submitted to MDEQ by signing this petition.

OWDMTake Action Now

Michigan’s year-long study of Line 5 alternatives has been released. Now is the time to submit your comment calling for the only way to truly protect the Great Lakes from an oil spill: decommission the Enbridge Line 5 pipelines through the Straits of Mackinac.

Protect the Great Lakes from a Catastrophic Oil Spill

Deadline for comments is August 4, so please submit yours today via this online form in support of protecting the Great Lakes from a catastrophic oil spill.

To the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality, Michigan Agency for Energy, Michigan Department of Natural Resources, and Office of the Attorney General:

I am writing to submit my official comment in response to the State of Michigan’s Line 5 alternatives analysis. This report was expressly commissioned for the overall purpose of “providing the State, Enbridge and the public with information that can be used to help guide decisions for the future of [Line 5 in the Straits].”

I am deeply disappointed in this analysis and this process riddled with conflict of interest. It lacks credibility because Dynamic Risk, a firm with ties to Enbridge, is its author. Even worse, it absurdly underestimates the impact of a spill and ignores a viable alternative to Line 5 – use of existing infrastructure. An expert review in December 2015 by advisors to a Great Lakes policy organization documented the practicality of this alternative.

Decommissioning Line 5 in the Straits of Mackinac is the only alternative that will prevent an oil spill with catastrophic consequences for the Great Lakes and the State of Michigan. It is time for the state to stop delaying action with flawed studies, exercise its legal duty as public trustee, and shut down Line 5. The state should use that authority through enforcement of its easement, an agreement that Enbridge has consistently violated. 

Specifically, the draft report on alternatives to Line 5 in the Mackinac Straits:

  1. Fails to follow the recommendations and standards outlined in the Michigan Petroleum Pipeline Task Force Report and should be withdrawn.
  2. Neglects to provide the state with an independent, fair analysis of the alternatives to Line 5. This report is clearly biased toward allowing Line 5 to continue to operate and/or allowing Enbridge to build new oil infrastructure and further expand its operations. That bias grows out of past, and potentially future, business relationships between Enbridge and the report’s authors. Clearly, the authors are not “wholly independent from any influence by Enbridge,” a standard for establishing credibility in the report’s findings that is outlined in the Task Force Report.
  3. Ignores using existing pipeline infrastructure as an alternative to Line 5 in the Straits, which was one of the alternatives the state required Dynamic Risk to analyze, and leaving it out is in conflict with Task Force recommendation 3 (b). It is unacceptable that the contractor eliminated this alternative in the early stages of analysis, and this must be remedied in the final report.
  4. Does not provide a worst-case scenario spill and cost analysis, which was one of the main objectives of this report and was specifically required by the state in its request for proposals under Section II-B. Instead, Dynamic Risk uses assumptions of risk that are woefully inadequate and are not credible. It estimates that:
    • Only 20-miles of shoreline would be impacted by a spill. This is 3% of the 720-mile area the University of Michigan found vulnerable to a spill in its 2016 study.
    • An oil spill would cost $100 to $200 million when Enbridge’s cleanup costs of its Kalamazoo River Line 6B pipeline oil spill in 2010 cost more than $1.2 billion.
  5. Overestimates an impact to propane supply, greatly exceeding what independent experts have determined would be necessary to provide the Upper Peninsula’s Rapid River facility with an alternative supply. The flawed report finds that up to 35 railcars per week or 15 truckloads per day would be necessary, while another study found it would take only one railcar or 3 - 4 truckloads per day to replace Line 5 propane supply to the U.P.
  6. Shows unfair bias towards building a tunneled pipeline. The report estimates the cost of a tunnel much lower than other estimates for this type of infrastructure; it fails to consider the risk of a spill to the Great Lakes, rivers and streams from other portions of the 64-year-old pipeline if the Straits portion were rebuilt; and it fails to look at the other health and environmental consequences of allowing Enbridge to build a tunnel and further expand its transport of mostly Canadian oil through Michigan for export. Dynamic Risk has a preference for new pipelines, which was evident when the firm aggressively promoted building a tunnel in its proposal to do this report, and its analysis is deeply flawed.

The magnitude of the risk of a spill is too severe to allow Line 5 to continue to operate in the Great Lakes. Michigan should not put the Great Lakes, our economy, health, drinking water, fisheries, and way of life at risk from a catastrophic oil spill any longer.

I urge you to act as legal public trustees of our waters and bottomlands, enforce the ongoing easement violations, and begin the process of decommissioning Line 5 in the Straits of Mackinac to protect the Great Lakes from a catastrophic oil spill. The State of Michigan has an independent legal duty to take this enforcement action based on Enbridge’s ongoing violations.

Please note that submitting your public comment here has nothing to do with the Line 5 ballot proposal that is being circulated.

 

4,583 COMMENTS
Goal: 5,000 comments

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or Text SHUTDOWN to +12314804112 to sign

Showing 4297 reactions

  • signed 2017-07-23 20:44:16 -0400
    Shut it down.
  • posted about this on Facebook 2017-07-23 20:41:11 -0400
    SIGN THE PETITION to tell the State of Mich. the only acceptable way to protect the Great Lakes is Shut Down Line 5.
  • signed 2017-07-23 20:40:54 -0400
  • posted about this on Facebook 2017-07-23 20:37:11 -0400
    SIGN THE PETITION to tell the State of Mich. the only acceptable way to protect the Great Lakes is Shut Down Line 5.
  • signed 2017-07-23 20:36:57 -0400
    MARGARET GOULD
  • signed 2017-07-23 20:15:30 -0400
    SHUT IT DOWN
  • signed via 2017-07-23 20:09:51 -0400
  • signed via 2017-07-23 19:56:46 -0400
    Please protect one of the biggest bodies of water the great lakes of freshwater that we need to survive
  • posted about this on Facebook 2017-07-23 19:49:51 -0400
    SIGN THE PETITION to tell the State of Mich. the only acceptable way to protect the Great Lakes is Shut Down Line 5.
  • signed 2017-07-23 19:48:47 -0400
    The evidence is not debatable. Please shut the line down immediately. The people, the water, the water dwellers, the birds and the plants deserve to be protected. Deciding against shutting it down puts money and oil over people and everything great about our state. Do not do this. Do not risk our lives for a few dollars. We need you now! Protect our water! Water is life!
  • signed 2017-07-23 19:43:54 -0400
  • signed via 2017-07-23 19:34:09 -0400
    Shut it down
  • signed 2017-07-23 19:30:19 -0400
  • signed 2017-07-23 19:24:38 -0400
  • signed 2017-07-23 19:17:25 -0400
  • signed 2017-07-23 19:16:43 -0400
    JULY 23, 2017…COMMENT FROM 2 YEARS AGO AND AGAIN 1 YEAR AGO REMAINS VALID. URGENCY HAS HEIGHTENED….AMAZEMENT AT INACTION OVERWHELMING. GOVERNOR SNYDER AND AG SCHUETTETHE LACK OF ACTION ON YOUR PARTS IS BURNED INTO OUR PSYCHE.


    October 15, 2015

    Governor Snyder and Attorney General Schuette:


    You have the political and moral authority to protect the Great Lakes and all natural life (including local communities and businesses, the “Pure Michigan” economy, commercial shipping, a vital fishery, and the drinking water supply for countless communities in Michigan) that depend on the Great Lakes for life itself.


    Our state is allowing the Line 5 pipelines to operate despite scientific professional concerns and questions about whether Enbridge, the pipelines’ owner, is complying with the terms of its 1953 easement or laws to protect the Great Lakes.


    Shut down the oil flowing through the Enbridge pipelines in the Mackinac Straits while the State and its Pipeline Safety Advisory Board oversee an independent risk assessment and alternatives analysis that should lead to decommissioning the Line(s) 5 and preventing a catastrophic oil spill in the Great Lakes.


    Pipelines don’t belong in the Great Lakes. Attorney General Schuette said, “Certainly, the Straits Pipelines would not be built today. Current technology has given us the ability to KNOW that an oil spill in the Great Lakes is not containable and “harmless” (the catastrophe enhanced by ice cover).


    The oil flowing through Line 5 pipelines is one genie that can be put back in the bottle if immediate action is taken by you.


    As a lifelong resident of the State of Michigan, I urge you to take swift action and use your authority to shut down Line 5 before this winter. Do not wait for a spill before taking action. A spill would be a bitter pill knowing that you had the positive solution and did nothing.


    Do what you know to be the right thing.


    Thank you.


    April 15, 2016

    My concern has not changed since October of 2015. It is further substantiated by additional exhaustive research performed by scientifically qualified professionals. Due to the violations of the 1953 Easement granted to Enbridge, please take action – shut down Line 5 in the Straits of Mackinac.

    Original petition statement:


    Governor Snyder and Attorney General Schuette:


    “You have the political and moral authority to protect the Great Lakes and all natural life (including local communities and businesses, the “Pure Michigan” economy, commercial shipping, a vital fishery, and the drinking water supply for countless communities in Michigan) that depend on the Great Lakes for life itself.


    Our state is allowing the Line 5 pipelines to operate despite scientific professional concerns and questions about whether Enbridge, the pipelines’ owner, is complying with the terms of its 1953 easement or laws to protect the Great Lakes.


    Shut down the oil flowing through the Enbridge pipelines in the Mackinac Straits while the State and its Pipeline Safety Advisory Board oversee an independent risk assessment and alternatives analysis that should lead to decommissioning the Line(s) 5 and preventing a catastrophic oil spill in the Great Lakes.


    Pipelines don’t belong in the Great Lakes. Attorney General Schuette said, “Certainly, the Straits Pipelines would not be built today. Current technology has given us the ability to KNOW that an oil spill in the Great Lakes is not containable and “harmless” (the catastrophe enhanced by ice cover).


    The oil flowing through Line 5 pipelines is one genie that can be put back in the bottle if immediate action is taken by you.


    As a lifelong resident of the State of Michigan, I urge you to take swift action and use your authority to shut down Line 5 before this winter. Do not wait for a spill before taking action. A spill would be a bitter pill knowing that you had the positive solution and did nothing.


    Do what you know to be the right thing."


    Thank you. Jill Lapham
  • signed 2017-07-23 19:08:53 -0400
  • signed via 2017-07-23 19:07:51 -0400
  • signed 2017-07-23 18:59:36 -0400
  • signed 2017-07-23 18:59:13 -0400
  • signed via 2017-07-23 18:58:18 -0400
  • signed via 2017-07-23 18:57:26 -0400
  • signed 2017-07-23 18:55:22 -0400
  • posted about this on Facebook 2017-07-23 18:54:31 -0400
    SIGN THE PETITION to tell the State of Mich. the only acceptable way to protect the Great Lakes is Shut Down Line 5.
  • @liladharma108 tweeted link to this page. 2017-07-23 18:54:29 -0400
    SIGN THE PETITION to tell the State of Mich. the only acceptable way to protect the Great Lakes is Shut Down Line 5. http://www.oilandwaterdontmix.org/comment_to_shutdown?recruiter_id=42149
  • signed 2017-07-23 18:54:04 -0400
    Please save the beauty that is the great lakes for future generations.
  • signed 2017-07-23 18:38:37 -0400
    Please shut it down!!
  • signed 2017-07-23 18:32:04 -0400
    Shut it down!!
  • signed 2017-07-23 18:29:22 -0400
  • signed via 2017-07-23 18:28:23 -0400
    Let’s not have a disaster before something is done to fix this!!

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