Enbridge’s threat today in a letter to Gov. Whitmer to ignore terms of a 68-year agreement and Michigan laws and keep operating its dangerous Line 5 oil pipelines in the Straits of Mackinac beyond the state’s May deadline for ceasing operations is an attempt to bully Michigan’s governor and completely ignores her duty to protect the Great Lakes.
The Canadian oil transport giant’s desperate attempt to weaponize United States federal courts and bludgeon Michigan with an army of corporate lawyers is a delay tactic that will ultimately fail.
Enbridge would like to ignore its multiple and incurable violations of its easement agreement and Michigan’s laws protecting the Great Lakes. Those are the basis for Gov. Whitmer’s decision to revoke the state’s 1953 easement agreement with Enbridge, effective in May.
Burying Michigan in an avalanche of legal maneuvers and threats is an insult to every Michigan resident who cares about the Great Lakes State. The fact that it comes as Michigan residents are in the midst of the worst public health threat in our lifetime is not just a distraction but an outrage.
UPDATE January 12, 2021, 12:25 PM from DNR Director Dan Eichinger:
“This letter is Enbridge’s attempt to power wash the unacceptable, ongoing, and very real threat posed by the company’s operation of the dual pipelines in the Straits of Mackinac, their history of violating the terms of the 1953 Easement, and their current noncompliance. Enbridge cannot unilaterally decide when laws and binding agreements apply and when they do not. We stand behind our efforts to protect the Great Lakes and all who depend on them, and we stand behind the substance of the November 2020 revocation and termination of the Easement. We look forward to making our case in front a judge, not via letters and press releases.” - Dan Eichinger, Director, Michigan DNR