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Enbridge assurances don't ease pipeline fears

Pipeline symposium draws big crowd of concerned citizens to Petoskey. Enbridge offers assurances but few tangible answers.

“For decades Enbridge has sent thousands of gallons of oil each day through the Straits of Mackinac. It's called "Line 5," and it carries oil from Superior, Wisconsin -- to Sarnia, Ontario. That pipeline is causing anxiety among many people in Michigan. They're worried about a worst-case scenario, where a major rupture in the pipeline could send thousands of gallons of oil pouring in to the Straits.

"Some things can't be replaced," says Matt Crehan. "And if you go ahead and pollute that big of a water supply, the chances of ever bringing it back to normal are slim to none." Crehan drove from Grand Rapids to the meeting in Petoskey, where he's carrying a sign that says Line 5 is a "ticking time bomb."

Enbridge says the crossing is safe.

"The pipeline is in very good condition," Brad Shamla says. He's the Vice President of U.S. Operations for Enbridge.

Gail Gruenwald, Executive Director of Tip of the Mitt, says it's hard for the public to get a straight answer about pipeline safety. "There's a huge amount of secrecy in the oil and gas industry in general," Gruenwald says. "And it raises a lot of issues about transparency and regulations for the public." - Interlochen Public Radio, June 26, 2014

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