The following is in reaction to the Michigan Public Service Commission’s ruling today regarding the scope of review for permitting required for Enbridge to replace and relocate its decaying Line 5 oil pipelines crossing the Straits of Mackinac with a proposed 18- to 21-foot diameter tunnel housing a single new pipeline.
FLOW and other organizations and tribes have formally intervened in the MPSC contested case process for siting the tunnel and pipeline to assert that Michigan law requires a comprehensive review of the project’s necessity, impacts, and alternatives in the context of climate change and the ongoing rapid transition to renewable energy sources.
“FLOW applauds the MPSC’s careful commitment to science, sound economics, and the public interest,” stated Liz Kirkwood, executive director of For Love of Water (FLOW). “The Commission’s decision is significant because it recognizes that the Michigan Environmental Protection Act applies to consideration of greenhouse gas emissions that would be spurred by Enbridge’s proposed oil pipeline tunnel. The MPSC clearly understands the need to accelerate the energy transition, adopt clean energy solutions, and avoid the environmental and economic impacts of legacy fossil fuels.”
Jim Olson, FLOW’s founder and legal advisor, said, “The MPSC’s decision demonstrates true leadership to address the transport and consumption of crude oil and the devastating effects crude oil has on the climate and the Great Lakes, infrastructure, and our quality of life in the 21st century.”
Background on Line 5 and the MPSC
See FLOW’s ongoing coverage of the Michigan Public Service Commission review of the Enbridge oil pipeline tunnel proposed for the Straits of Mackinac here:
- March 9, 2021 – FLOW MPSC App for Leave Brief on Appeal from Remand Ruling 2021.03.09
- Jan. 15, 2021 – FLOW MPSC Brief on Remand January 15, 2021
- Nov. 10, 2020 — FLOW Appeals ALJ’s Decision on Proposed ‘Line 5’ Oil Tunnel
- Oct. 28, 2020 — Line 5 Oil Tunnel in the Great Lakes: Is the Die Cast for the Next 99 Years?
- Aug. 21, 2020 — Tribes and Environmental Groups Will Help Decide Fate of Proposed Line 5 Oil Tunnel in the Great Lakes – FLOW
- June 30, 2020 — MPSC: Proposed ‘Line 5’ Oil Tunnel in the Straits of Mackinac Must Undergo Full and Vigorous Public Review – FLOW
- May 28, 2020 – Decision Time Coming on Line 5 Oil Tunnel – FLOW. Thousands urge MPSC to bring Enbridge under rule of law to protect the Great Lakes.
- May 15, 2020 – FLOW Urges MPSC to Deny Enbridge’s Request for a Free Pass on Siting a ‘Line 5’ Oil Tunnel in the Straits of Mackinac – FLOW. Proposed project purports to be maintenance, attempts to sidestep the Great Lakes Submerged Lands Act and public trust law.
- FLOW’s archive on the MPSC and Enbridge’s proposed Line 5 oil tunnel: https://forloveofwater.org/?s=MPSC
For more information, see FLOW’s Line 5 fact sheets and blogs:
- FLOW’s Program on Line 5 in the Straits of Mackinac
- FLOW’s Fact Sheets:
- FLOW’s Blogs: Line 5 Blog Coverage