Enbridge and other agencies held an oil spill drill this past September 24. They are working very hard to focus the public discussion around cleanup, not prevention, of an oil spill in the Straits of Mackinac. Here is a roundup of the coverage in the news media.
Concerned citizens and stakeholders gathered at the Straits of Mackinac on that day in a call to shut down Line 5 before ice covers the Straits this winter. Read about the many reasons Oil & Water Don't Mix and others feel now is the time to shut down Line 5 because Oil & Ice Don't Mix.
Detroit Free Press
St. Ignace News
A very interesting and detailed article including these highlights:
• Enbridge says Line 5 is past its life expectancy
• Ice carving – During a winter response to a spill under thick ice, long slots would be cut out of the ice and booms would be placed in the water to block the oil.
• Still “not comfortable”? – Coast Guard Commander Teschendorf said he considered the exercise a success. He declined to comment on whether the drill made him more comfortable with the Coast Guard’s ability to respond to a spill in the Straits.
• 30% earns a passing grade – During a spill, recovering 30% of spilled oil is considered a good response. =
• Perhaps by Thanksgiving – In about two months, Enbridge will issue a summary of lessons learned and drill details, company spokesman Michael Barnes said.
• Show boats – The 18 boats and equipment deployed last week was more than would be seen during a real spill
• Miscommunication – Greg Carter, manager of emergency preparedness for Enbridge, alluded to the need for better integration of the command center and the operations and logistics unit in charge of deployments
• Blown away – Workers struggled against strong currents and wind that morning.
Mlive Opinion Piece
Thank you to Phil Parr of Lake Charlevoix Brewing Company for his great comments at Thursday’s press conference.
Mackinac oil won't mix with water - the lifeblood of craft-brew business. Here’s an opinion piece from his partner Rich Bergmann.
Great Lakes Echo
Viewpoint from Enbridge's CEO, who receives $12 million in annual salary running the multibillion-dollar company: “Everyone needs insurance,” said Al Monaco, the chief executive officer of Enbridge. “This isn’t cheap insurance either.”
(Note that Enbridge CEO Al Monaco's $12 million salary is 12 times greater than the $1 million insurance coverage required by the state's 1953 easement permitting Enbridge to use state bottomlands in the Mackinac Straits)
National Coverage from Daily Kos
They covered the press conference held by Food & Water Watch, The Sault Tribe of Chippewa and Ottawa Indians, and Oil & Water Don't Mix.
Note the quotes Enbridge’s cleanup contractor as if he’s a member of the public, rather than on the payroll.