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Petoskey News: No Way to Move Oil Under the Great Lakes Without Risk

Enbridge's aging Line 5 oil pipelines in the Mackinac Straits are risky business. Reforms are needed at the state and federal level regarding pipeline regulation and oil extraction and transport. 

Tip of the Mitt Watershed Council policy specialist Jennifer McKay shares her organization's views and proposed reforms

On the federal level, we would like to see the following:

— Development of a permitting process for the siting of new oil pipelines that considers the long-term impacts to the environment

— Dedicated and sustainable funding to the Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration, the agency responsible for pipeline safety

— Increased transparency regarding pipeline infrastructure and oil transportation

At the state level, we have been working to:

— Obtain a pipeline water crossing survey to assess the risks of existing pipelines running under the state’s rivers, streams, and lakes

— Improve the permitting process for new oil pipelines

— Require approval of all spill response plans by the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality

With respect to Line 5, the petroleum pipeline owned and operated by Enbridge Energy Limited Partnership that runs through Northern Michigan, the Watershed Council is working to:

— Obtain results of in-line inspection reports to confirm the integrity of the pipeline

— Increase emergency response capabilities including equipment, training, and personnel

— Have the State require an open, transparent, and public review process to re-evaluate provisions such as operations and maintenance and insurance liability

— Encourage the development of a decommissioning plan

Read the full article here

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  • published this page in News 2015-06-23 16:12:32 -0400

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