This Week Monday is a new, regular online newsletter from Oil & Water Don't Mix with fresh facts and actions in the citizens' movement to protect the Great Lakes, Michigan, and our climate from the Enbridge Line 5 oil pipeline. Get This Week Monday in your inbox by signing up at Oil & Water Don't Mix.
Dr. Edward Timm
Tonight: A Really Big Show
The Straits of Mackinac Alliance is hosting the first of three free webinars tonight, Monday, Oct 12, at 7 p.m. Dr. Edward Timm, a Professional Engineer and retired Dow senior engineer, will focus on the findings of his five-year-long examination of Enbridge's underwater section of Line 5.
Register for tonight’s show here and you can also get details of future webinar topics this month.
Big Deadline for Enbridge’s Line 5 Oil Tunnel
With just a week to go before an Oct. 19 deadline for public comment, experts and Michiganders by the hundreds have already sent messages to the administration of Gov. Whitmer urging a rejection of Enbridge’s proposed permits to construct a Line 5 oil tunnel in the Straits of Mackinac. Haven’t submitted your comment yet? Please sign this Oil & Water Don’t Mix petition today to the Dept. of Environment, Great Lakes, and Energy (EGLE). A permit decision is expected in December. Enbridge has a high hurdle to overcome after geologists, tunnel and water quality experts who studied Enbridge’s tunnel plan gave it a big thumbs down, warning that the tunnel plan may lead to long delays and catastrophic construction problems that could be life-threatening to construction workers and threatens the nearby existing Line 5 pipelines that still lay precariously at the bottom of the Straits.
Enbridge to Michigan Public Service Commission: Back Off
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Federal rules delegate to states decisions on where oil and other pipelines are located. So when Enbridge proposed relocating Line 5 to an area west of the existing Line 5 in the Straits of Mackinac and to put it underground in a $500 million, four-mile-long tunnel the Michigan Public Service Commission (MPSC) has the responsibility to examine the proposal in detail. At a Sept. 30 hearing, Enbridge outlined its case before Judge Dennis Mack. Bottom line: Enbridge thinks the MPSC has no authority to approve or reject the proposed tunnel and no authority to extensively review any environmental impacts from tunnel construction. An impressive array of organizations and tribal governments disagree. Judge Mack’s opinion is expected any day now. You can read the full transcript from the Sept.30 hearing here.
Enbridge: Don’t Blame Us for Climate Change
A question before the Michigan Public Service Commission is the environmental impact of keeping Line 5 operating for another 99 years, which is what Enbridge proposes for its oil tunnel. The Michigan Climate Action Network and Environmental Law & Policy Center have made a strong joint case that 99 years of transporting fossil fuels through Line 5 would have major environmental impacts, including the impact of greenhouse gases on our climate. The groups’ attorney, Margaret Kearney, cited Gov. Whitmer’s recently announced climate policies in making her case before Judge Mack: The governor’s actions, said Kearney, “demonstrate that including greenhouse gas emissions and their impact on climate change in making decisions is a smart thing to do. It is something that smart decision-makers do because greenhouse gases are pollutants that impact the environment.” Makes sense, right? Not to Enbridge.
Taking a page from the 1990s and Big Tobacco's denial of responsibility for its cancer-causing cigarettes, Enbridge--which made $50 billion dollars Canadian last year transporting fossil fuels--says it shouldn’t be held responsible for the climate impacts of its products. Enbridge told Judge Mack that it is consumers who use the oil who are at fault for climate impacts, not them. According to the Michigan Climate Action Network, an estimated 53 million metric tons of greenhouse gas emissions annually can be linked to Line 5.
Please consider supporting the citizens' movement to shut down Line 5 by donating to Oil & Water Don't Mix.
For comments, corrections, suggestions contact David Holtz at [email protected]